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Beyond “Do You Listen to girl in red?”: 5 Underrated Queer Women in Music to Check Out

Listen, I love girl in red and all the other popular sapphic artists as much as the next lesbian. But it’s always great to branch out and support some lesser known musicians as well. Here’s a list of five of my favorite LGBTQ+ women in music with under a million monthly Spotify listeners.

1. Carlie Hanson

Charlie Hanson began posting covers on YouTube in 2014, gaining popularity when a cover she posted on Instagram went viral and being contacted by a talent agent soon after. A few years later, she began touring with Troye Sivan on his Bloom Tour. Her music has also been shared by Taylor Swift on a playlist of songs she was loving at the time. All in all, Carlie has a strong pop sound, making her a great artist to dance around your room to.

Monthly listeners: 888,663

Perfect for fans of: Lorde, Avril Lavigne, Troye Sivan

Starter songs: Back in My Arms, Side Effects, Good Enough

2. Leanna Firestone

Leanna Firestone is a 20 year old singer-songwriter who gained popularity posting videos of her singing her (mainly original) songs on tiktok. From there, she began releasing music, including her debut EP “Y/N,” which came out in 2021. Her songwriting is phenomenal; conveying emotions of love and life beautifully. Most of her songs are heartbreaking in their messaging — making them all too easy to cry to — but her happier songs will still hit you right in the feels in the very best way. Be sure to check out her music on streaming platforms but also on TikTok, where she often post snippets of unreleased songs.

Monthly listeners: 342,822

Perfect for fans of: dodie, Olivia Rodrigo, Ricky Montgomery

Starter songs: Two Week Notice, Hide, Closure

3. Pixie Labrador

Pixie Labrador is a Filipino singer, songwriter, and producer. Her music career began when she was only 15, captivating audiences, mainly in the Philippines, with her gorgeous lyrical style and empathetic descriptions of heartbreak. Her goal has always been to challenge the underrepresentation of sapphic artists in Filipino music, something she continues to promote with her growing success. With her music being so soothing and thoughtful, her songs are perfect for both a relaxing rewind and and high focus study session.

Monthly listeners: 159,992

Perfect for fans of: Hozier, Mitski, Luz Corrigan

Starter songs: Even If I Tried, For You, What’s It Like

4. Julianna Joy

Julianna Joy might be my personal favorite on this list. Julianna is 19, though she’s been writing songs since she was 10. She released her first EP entitled “cherries,” in 2020. Her music is difficult to place into any one category, consisting of songs inspired by the mix of genres she grew up on and capturing both feelings and colors, attempting to represent her synesthesia. With such an interesting sound and recent launch to her career, Julianna is definitely one to keep an eye on.

Monthly listeners: 83,140

Perfect for fans of: Conan Gray, WILLOW, Maisie Peters

Starter songs: Nevermind, Cherry Bomb, Palindrome

5. Cassidy King

Cassidy King would describe her music as electric indie-pop. Similarly to other artists on this list, she released her debut EP “Not So Picture Perfect” fairly recently, in 2020. The music on this EP focuses on telling the story of falling in and out of love with a woman. Cassidy’s sound is always fun for listeners, making her music a great soundtrack to keep you jamming out.

Monthly listeners: 61,924

Perfect for fans of: Hayley Kiyoko, King Princess, Billie Eilish

Starter songs: Safe Places, Abigail, Four in the Morning

Emma Bergman

Bowling Green '25

Emma is a freshman, double majoring in psychology and Spanish. She's a bonified Swiftie, a former theatre kid, and an avid reader. Her favorite topics to write about include media, mental health, and LGBTQ+ life.
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