In this week’s instalment of What’s Going On on this final Sunday of June, I’ve got more hot new party jams for you all to enjoy during your Pride festivities. Pride may look a little different this year in some places. There are some cities around the world that are celebrating as normal with a variety of events and there are places like here in Toronto that aren’t doing organized in-person celebrations. Today is the day of Toronto’s Pride parade and while it is digital for the second year in a row (thanks to the pandemic), you can still have a great time by adding the songs below to your Pride month playlists. As always, if you dig what you hear, be sure to follow and stream these artists.
Billy Porter – The latest release from the Red Hot Organization’s forthcoming album Red Hot + Free features all-around entertainer Billy Porter. “Caught in the Middle” is a cover of the 1993 Juliet Roberts dance classic. The Pose star sounds incredible, proving why he’s sustained such a lasting career in various facets of the industry. On what it means to be a Red Hot collaborator, Billy Porter says: “30 years ago no one even wanted to talk about HIV and AIDS let alone celebrate the community with music and dance. There has to be joy in the middle of the pain, and hope that things can and will get better. That’s why the work that RED HOT does is so important.”
Listen to Billy Porter’s new single “Caught in the Middle” below.
Lorde – Global pop superstar Lorde is back with “Solar Power”, the lead single from her hotly anticipated third album of the same name due out on August 20. A major theme of the album is an ode to the great outdoors and that definitely sums up the first single. “Solar Power” is laidback, sun-soaked, and maybe somewhat controversially reminiscent of Primal Scream’s “Loaded” or George Michael’s “Freedom 90.” Regardless of what other songs “Solar Power” may sound like, it’s the perfect song for chill moments at a poolside Pride party. Describing the single, Lorde says: “It’s about that infectious, flirtatious summer energy that takes hold of us all, come June…”
Listen to Lorde’s new single “Solar Power” below.
Lazarus Lynch – In my special Pride-themed edition of What’s Going On last year, I highlighted the track “I’m Gay” by celebrity chef and cookbook author Lazarus Lynch and this year, he’s out with his new single “Black Queer Anthem.” Just from the song title alone, you instantly know what you’re in for. The chant of “I’m Black, so queer, I’m Black, so Black” that repeats throughout much of the track just cements that even more. With the heavy distortion, marching beat, and sounds of news footage, “Black Queer Anthem” is just as much a political manifesto as it is an affirming self-love anthem.
Listen to Lazarus Lynch’s new single “Black Queer Anthem” below.
Pabllo Vittar – Brazilian drag superstar Pabllo Vittar just dropped her new album Batidão Tropical and with that comes the hot new single “Triste com T.” After getting her start on a reality TV singing show in 2014, Vittar has become a cult sensation all over the world and is poised to keep that going with Batidão Tropical. “Triste com T” is indicative of the back to basics approach that Pabllo Vittar took with the new album, focusing more on her Brazilian roots and the sounds she grew up on. The visuals, as always, are on point with a sleek, colorful music video that has the international drag sensation looking every bit a pop princess and busting out choreography.
Listen to Pabllo Vittar’s new single “Triste com T” below.
Rêve – There’s a new Canadian pop sensation on the scene and her name is Rêve. The Montreal-born singer is out now with “Still Dancing”, her debut single. Inspired by quarantine dance parties in Montreal, the euphoric club song is all about getting out on the dance floor even though we’ve all been dealing with major sadness and anxiety. On what “Still Dancing” is all about, Rêve says: “’Still Dancing’ is a song that was written during a time when misery needed company and couldn’t have any. It is a song dedicated to club kids, but also house music itself and its unique ability to transport us to euphoria even on our darkest days.”
Listen to Rêve’s new single “Still Dancing” below.