In the wake of teen suicides nationwide, it's easy to wonder where these teens can turn. For the first time that I can recall, pop radio may hold the answer.
OK, I may be putting pop songs on a pedestal, but pop stars are releasing songs that people can dance and sing along with but also encourage young people who are bullied without being schmaltzy. And while these are not the newest themes, as Christina Aguilera and Cyndi Lauper would be quick to remind you, this is the first time I've seen a recurring theme of singles and album tracks that are directed at bullied youth (and LGBT ones in particular.)
That naughty trash-pop minx Ke$ha tells Entertainment Weekly that her mini-album Cannibal's lead single "We R Who We R" is intended to be a pride anthem, a "celebration of any sort of quirks or eccentricities." It's also a lot of fun to dance to, as well:
Meanwhile, Katy Perry's tumultuous relationship with the gay community takes a turn for the better with the "Fireworks" - a Jack Kerouac-referencing ditty of empowerment, with boys kissing in the video:
Over in P!nk's world, one of two news songs included on the US release of her Greatest Hits... So Far!!! album is "Raise Your Glass." Besides quoting the Joker, this anthem for underdogs and sundry other "dirty little freaks" continues P!nk's strong commitment to gay rights. She performs the song at a gay wedding in the video for the song:
The Facebook Generation's songwriter of record, Taylor Swift includes the song "Mean" on her platinum-selling disc Speak Now. It's a simple tale of childhood bullies left in the dust as Taylor goes on to selling a million-plus CDs in a week. "Someday I'll be big enough that you can't hit me" the country-pop cutie sings, and I pray that troubles kids are singing along. Because it's true!
I'm still on the fence about Eminem and Lil' Wayne's Haddaway-sampling single "No Love" The video is heartbreaking, but as usual Wayne and Em can't control their potty-mouth, including both racial and homosexual slurs in the rhymes. Thoughts?
Let's clean our ears out with some very positive music from Broadway cast members! The proceeds from the iTunes downloads of "It Gets Better" directly benefits The Trevor Project, the only national suicide prevention hotline for LGBT youth. It's very inspirational and catchy, too!
And we cannot forget the classics, Cyndi Lauper's "True Colors" has been a source of inspiration for gay people for years. In support of the "It Gets Better" project, the Gay Men's Chorus of Los Angeles performed the song. Truly beautiful!
Of course, you know Lady Gaga will be weighing in soon...