Throughout Pride Month, PAPER is asking LGBTQ+ leaders to curate a playlist that make them feel proud. Whether the songs are pop bops, emotional ballads, or just plain bangers, we want to hear from some of the community's foremost figures: what songs make you feel prideful?
Related | 5 Bops That Make HaraJuku Feel Proud
This week, one of New York City's LGBTQ nightlife gatekeepers, Ty Sunderland, is taking the reigns. For the past couple of years, the only name on everyone's lips in Manhattan has been Ty Sunderland. His China Chalet party, Heaven on Earth, has spanned both land and sea and he's been making strides DJing parties for brands across the United States. There are very few people who have as busy of a Pride month as he does, with gigs back-to-back-to-back, but he took some time away from the 1's and 2's just for us. Now, he's telling PAPER about the five songs that make him feel proud.
1. "We R Who We R" by Kesha
This is a bop that often doesn't get the attention it deserves as a gay anthem. It's truly about embracing who you are, or rather who you and your friends are, over a banger of an electro dance beat. What's not to love? For me, the song came out around the time that I came out, so it holds a special place in my music library and fuzzy Jack Daniels-fueled memories.
2. "You Make Me Feel (Mighty Real)" by Sylvester
Sylvester is the quintessential queer icon and this song is a mega club banger for me. Every time I put it on the whole club bursts with energy. Also all royalties from his work go to San Francisco-based HIV/AIDS charities, so stream away sis!
3. "Stronger" by Britney Spears
I doubt Britney anticipated this to be a gay anthem, but it is for me, and it's a good one. There's so much strength in admitting to yourself and to the world who you are, and this song really resonates this theme. I mean she's barely singing. She's basically screaming in your ear that she is stronger than yesterday.
4. "Sweet Spot" by Kim Petras
Okay, this is a full-on banger in a world where the girls aren't making many bangers anymore. It's "Music Sounds Better With You" updated to 2019 and I stan so hard. I just can't wait to hear it all Pride week. I will be playing it at every gig I have until further notice. So bring out the confetti cannons; pop set, house set, doesn't matter. You're getting "Sweet Spot."
5. "Science" by Allie X
"Science" makes me want to make a whole playlist of bass heavy sexy-pop. It's by far my favorite track on Super Sunset. It might not be a club banger, but it is def a super bop. Enjoy responsibly.
Photography: Megan Walschlager