Put on a flower crown, grab your diamonds and pearls, and crack open a Pabst Blue Ribbon — on ice. Ever since her debut album Born to Die was released in 2012, Lana Del Rey has acquired a cult following of vivacious fans. But what is it about the dreamy singer that has the gays screaming “icon” at her concert? We’ve broken it down to the five reasons why Lana Del Rey is literally everything to the gays.
1. The Queen of Being Misunderstood
Just like the LGBTQ community, Lana Del Rey is no stranger to struggle. Although her first album Born to Die debuted at No. 2 on the Billboard 200, its critical reception was overwhelmingly negative. Pitchfork called the album an “ultimate disappointment,” while a two-star review from Rolling Stone questioned her “dull” and “dreary” sound. After a couple shaky album promo performances in 2012 including her sleepy Saturday Night Live appearance, the future of the queen of melancholy was uncertain. Five years and four albums later, Lana Del Rey has proven that she can weather the storm that surrounded her early career.
2. Her Lyrics Take You There
Lyrically, her albums are what teenage angst and hot summer nights are made of. In a world that chastises men for exploring their femininity, Lana Del Rey’s music is an outlet for gay men to feel their fantasies. Listen to any one of her songs to find the perfect #gayboy Instagram caption. “I was filled with poison, but blessed with beauty and rage,” is a great choice for any well lit selfie. Not convinced? Open your Grindr at any gay club on a Friday night and you’re sure to spot Lana lyrics like “I gots a taste for a men who’re older” opening at least one twink’s bio.
3. Teaching the Children How Camp Is Done
Lana Del Rey is the new queen of camp. In late 2013, Lana Del Rey released her “Tropico” short film, a 27-minute masterpiece with intense visuals of sex, drugs, and glittery Hollyweird. References for Lana’s aesthetic can be found in camp classic films like John Waters’ Pink Flamingos (starring the drag icon Divine), or even from Cher’s most memorable costumes by the legendary Bob Mackie. It is because of the LGBTQ artists that came so boldly before her that Lana Del Rey can explore her own campy qualities.
4. She Defines Sexual Empowerment
It’s time to talk about the taste of Pepsi Cola. Lana Del Rey’s hypersexual expression isn’t afraid to take us all the way, and her sexual candor feels just as controlled as it does playful. Her Weeknd-assisted track “Lust For Life” peaked at No. 64 on the Hot 100, and has a passion-filled chorus where you just might “take off all your clothes.” Lyrics like “Let me put on a show for you daddy” from the sultry track “Yayo” is soaked in sexual submission that has the daddy-loving gays all riled up.
5. ‘Look At You Kids, You Know You’re The Coolest’
Lana has always shared a strong connection with her fandom. But it wasn’t until this year with the release of her song “Love,” that the subject matter became more about her beloved audience. “Love” is a beautifully-crafted message to her fans in which LDR understands our struggles, and validates our choices. For a generation of queer youth to hear their idol tell them that who they are is simply “enough” is nothing short of inspirational.
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