Pride

First Out: New Music From Brittany Howard, Joy Oladokun, Kim Petras & More

Brittany Howard
Rich Polk/Getty Images for ESSENCE

Brittany Howard attends the 2020 13th Annual ESSENCE Black Women in Hollywood Luncheon at Beverly Wilshire, A Four Seasons Hotel on February 06, 2020 in Beverly Hills, California.

With election results still being tabulated, LGBTQ people everywhere are feeling more stressed than ever -- so why not try and destress with some new tunes from queer artists? Billboard Pride is here to help with First Out, our weekly roundup of some of the best new music releases from LGBTQ artists.

From Brittany Howard's incredible Rogers & Hammerstein cover to Joy Oladokun's hopeful new single, check out some of our favorite new releases this week.


Brittany Howard, "You'll Never Walk Alone"

In a time of confusion and fear, Brittany Howard wants to remind you that there is still plenty to hope for. On Election Day, the rocker teamed up with Johnnie Walker and Anomaly New York for their new political ad, that sees the singer giving a stirring performance of the Rogers & Hammerstein classic "You'll Never Walk Alone," from their 1945 musical Carousel. Themed around staying optimistic in dark times, Howard's soulful voice pierces through, as her bluesy cover rages through doubt and cynicism. As Howard reminds us on the song's refrain, "Walk on with hope in your heart/ And you'll never walk alone."

Joy Oladokun, "Look Up"

Still in need of some hope? Joy Oladokun has you covered with her stunning new single "Look Up," a soothing lullaby for your anxious nerves. The singer-songwriter, who has always excelled at providing messages of empathy and compassion with her touching musical stylings, becomes a guru of sorts as she asks the listener to wipe away their fear and find their own happiness. From the gentle guitar strumming, to lyrics that let you know that "trouble's always gonna be there," but you shouldn't "let it bring you to your knees," "Look Up" is a must-listen for those in need of an emotional reset.

K/DA, "Villains (feat. Kim Petras, Madison Beer & League of Legends)"

The virtual League of Legends girl group K/DA has become known for their stunning production over the past year or so, but their newest track is sure to turn some heads. On "Villains," featuring pop stars Kim Petras and Madison Beer, the group embraces their evil side as the croon over a driving beat their intention to rule the world. "Type to make you cry, type to put a price/ All up on your head, do just what I said," the group sings. "I'm a straight up villain."

Various Artists, Happiest Season (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack)

Even with the election still taking up rent-free space in all our heads, a number of queer stars are ready to look forward to the holidays. On the soundtrack for the upcoming queer holiday film Happiest Season, a number of LGBTQ artists offer their takes on new and classic holiday offerings. Whether it's singer-songwriter Shea Diamond giving a much-needed thank you to "Mrs. Claus," Carlie Hanson celebrating the festive time of year with her "Chosen Family," or LP offering her take on the Christmas classic "Silent Night," the new soundtrack serves as a showcase of queer talent to brighten up your holiday season.

Katya, "Come In Brazil (feat. Alaska Thunderfuck)"

RuPaul's Drag Race superstar Katya is ready to kick-start her career as a solo artist, with a little help from her fellow All Stars 2 alum Alaska Thunderfuck. On "Come In Brazil," the sexed-up new single off of Katya's upcoming EP Vampire Fitness, the drag stars go searching from Rio de Janeiro to São Paolo for some hot guys that they can hook up with for the evening. It's sexy, it's campy, and of course, it's the kind of hilarious content that we've come to expect from Katya.

Serena Isioma, "Stop Calling the Police on Me"

With her mesmerizing, heartbreaking new single, Serena Isioma is asking nicely for the last time for people to "Stop Calling the Police on Me." The single, which is the latest from the singer's upcoming EP The Leo Sun Sets, sees Isioma bluntly letting those who would oppress her know that their "concern" is only putting her life at greater risk. "'Stop Calling the Police on Me' is about searching for peace outside of the society that doesn’t understand you," she said of the track in a statement. "There was a heavy police presence in my household growing up. It was very toxic. Eventually, I stopped coming home altogether. I was much happier hanging out with my friends."

Apollo Flowerchild, "Bloody Hands"

Of course, as this week draws to a close, the word that best describes the mood would likely be "uncertainty." So it's only fitting that up-and-coming artist Apollo Flowerchild fit that theme with their latest offering, "Bloody Hands." The hypnotic single (which is the first released from label Trans Trenderz recent collaboration with Studio G Brooklyn) sees Flowerchild embracing that unease with vigor — their haunting vocals soar over an acoustic melody, as they sing "“I’m regretting every choice/ Destroying all the things that I hold dear/ And a dark cloud hovers near.”