Sam Quealy Wants To Be Your Valentine

Sam Quealy Wants To Be Your Valentine

By Erica CampbellFeb 14, 2024

Sam Quealy’s latest kinetic, self-described “chaotic hot girl banger” is an ode to the beauty of queer, unapologetic love. The Paris-based Australian pop star recently dropped her debut album BLONDE VENUS, and today on PAPER she’s premiering her “VALENTINE” and sharing how the track and visuals came to life.

“'VALENTINE' serves as my love letter to the LGBTQIA+ community,” Quealy tells PAPER. “I wanted to write a song emphasizing the importance of love in all forms with no labels or boundaries. I feel like "valentine" is the perfect cute way to describe someone you have feelings for. It’s also about learning to love yourself for who you are. My trans, queer and nonbinary friends inspire me daily, so I wanted to make this love letter to them and to myself.”

In the video, Quealy embraces the chaos of New York City, crawling on subway car floors, dancing on overpasses and dramatically twirling around in Time Square. “It’s one of the things I love most about NYC,” she says of filming in busy streets and packed trains. “I could be dressed as a giant pigeon in NYC and literally nobody would care,” she says, adding, “We basically just ran around the whole city being feral.”

Quealy worked with director Matt Sparks on the visuals for “VALENTINE,” leaning into a “simple honest storyline.”

“It's just me having my camp Carrie Bradshaw moment while falling in love with the city and falling in love with myself,” she says. Some may say that Valentine’s Day is too commercialized to focus on the true depth of love, but the bold singer begs to differ. “For me, Valentine’s Day continues to serve as a reminder of the importance of love and connection, especially in challenging times,” she says. “It’s not just about romantic relationships but love for humanity and yourself.”

The singer also tells us that love without boundaries is more important now than ever. “There are still so many hate crimes against the LGBTQIA + community,” she says. “I want anyone who listens to my music to be able to love without fear of judgment and be respected.”

Soon Quealy embarks on the European leg of her first headlining tour. “I've been training like crazy for that and added a lot of new material,” she says. “I describe myself on stage as 'Jessica Rabbit at a rave,' super glam but super nasty and very high energy. I love sharing my music through live performances. I think it’s something that can't be matched.”

Photography: Ben Jastremski