SMILE at Whomever You Like! (Week 24 – 2015)

This week’s SMILE topic is LGBT related music/music videos from around the world. It would have been easy to do a post about just LGBT related songs and fill it with songs from American artists, but there are some amazing songs from all over that people might not even know about because they come from countries that aren’t viewed as very “gay friendly.” Enjoy! (Warning: these videos can be hard/sad to watch.)

To get it out of the way because it’s very depressing, I’m going to start with Hozier‘s Take Me To Church (lyrics). While the song itself is basically against religion, the music video is pretty clear in it’s LGBT intent. Hozier is from Ireland, which recently became the first country in the world to make marriage equality a constitutional right, and has said the video was done as a protest against Russia’s anti-gay laws.

K.will‘s Please don’t… (케이윌 – 이러지마 제발) (lyrics)(Korean) deals with another difficulty facing LGBT individuals and comes from South Korea. The country isn’t “anti-gay”, they do have LGBT festivals and the infamous “Homo Hill”, but they are seen as largely non-gay friendly because there are no laws against discrimination based on sexuality. They are slowly working on things though, showcased by the drama Seonam Girls High School Investigators featuring the first lesbian kiss on South Korean TV.

A nearby country with the same troubles is China; representing them is Jolin Tsai‘s We’re All Different, Yet The Same (蔡依林 不一樣又怎樣) (lyrics)(Mandarin). Despite what many people seem to think, homosexuality is not illegal in China; however, they also don’t have any laws against discrimination based on sexuality and use heavy censorship on positive depictions of LGBT couples in the media. Jolin, though, is the “Queen of C-Pop”… basically, you can’t stop her. This MV is so touching too, I love it!

Next up is Russia; yes, Russia. This is Ruki Vverh‘s On tebya celuet (He Kisses You) (lyrics)(Russian). While Russia might have some backwards ways of approaching things, like creating anti-gay laws but widely embracing gender-bending or flamboyant stars, it is important to note that not every Russian is against LGBTs. This electro-pop duo was the big thing in the 90s in Russia and this song/music video is their most iconic work. Not only does it feature an openly gay couple, but it also celebrates drag, and shows the closet thing you’re going to get to a gay sex scene on Russian TV.

Lastly… honestly, I can’t help myself ^^;;;

What are some non-American LGBT songs that you know of? Share them in a comment, and be sure to include any suggestions you may have for future SMILEs!

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