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How Chappell Roan’s Music Has Validated My Experiences as a Queer Woman

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The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Cal Poly chapter.

Chappell Roan. The name on everyone’s lips in 2024. Taking over news headlines and headlining shows, the queer singer from Missouri, who now lives in Los Angeles, has been skyrocketing on social media. I found her like most people did— trending on TikTok with her songs “Casual,” “HOT TO GO!,” and “Red Wine Supernova.” Almost every song on her debut album The Rise and Fall of a Midwest Princess has trended online. She’s taken the internet by storm with her newest single “Good Luck, Babe!,” which was released in April and already has 80 million streams on Spotify, making it her most streamed song. 

There’s something special about “Good Luck, Babe!” that makes me feel more connected to this song than her others. Besides the song being unbelievably catchy, “Good Luck, Babe!” perfectly captures the feeling of being a girl’s experiment in terms of WLW dating. Don’t get me wrong – there is nothing wrong with exploring your sexuality, and everyone should pursue their own journeys of identity. However, that doesn’t take away the pain of being on the receiving end of someone testing their sexuality out on you. It can feel dehumanizing and heartbreaking, especially if you have strong feelings for that person. 

These are experiences I rarely see discussed online or in the media. Most queer representation in modern-day TV shows, movies, and books involve the classic relationship stereotypes of a butch and a femme, or a lesbian and the “straight” girl who falls for her. Although these stereotypes can be very real, oftentimes these pieces of media don’t get into the true realities of queer relationships. The gray-area labels, the casual hookups, and the true heartbreaks and joys that arise from these relationships. 

This new wave of representation reminded me of the online controversy over The Weeknd’s lyric “You said you might be into girls, said you’re going through a phase, keeping your heart safe,” from his feature on the French DJ Gesaffelstein’s song “Lost in the Fire.” Although I don’t think The Weeknd meant any harm by this, it was invalidating to hear because it ignores the trauma, love triangles, and utter heartbreaks that come from queer female relationships, in the same exact way that heterosexual relationships experience. This makes queer relationships feel less important and valued than heterosexual ones. This is not to say that queer relationships can’t be full of love, happiness, and softness, because they most definitely can. This is to say that they’re multifaceted, and can involve a wide range of emotions, from lust to love to a small crush to anger and heartbreak. 

Chappell Roan’s music includes lyrics that have truly spoken to the hearts of queer women, myself included. For example, her line “You can kiss a hundred boys in bars, shoot another shot, try to stop the feeling,” from her song “Good Luck, Babe!,” much more accurately expresses the feeling of growing up queer, being unsure in your identity, and trying to distract yourself from being true to yourself. 

  I highly recommend indulging in Roan’s drag queen-influenced queer pop extravaganza The Rise and Fall of a Midwest Princess. It tells the unheard trials and tribulations of queer women everywhere, and opens eyes to the ups and downs of gay female relationships, whilst also providing the listener with catchy instrumentals and beautiful vocals. I find Chappell Roan’s work in the queer music community to be groundbreaking and important for younger queer people to grow up with.

Sam Fickett

Cal Poly '27

Sam is a first-year student at Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo, studying journalism with a concentration in news. She is currently an editorial writer at Cal Poly's Her Campus. She is from Santa Clarita, California. In the past, Sam has been a member of the gun violence prevention group Students Demand Action, and hopes to get involved again in the future. In Sam's free time, she enjoys reading, getting coffee with friends, and going to the gym.