Live Your Truth

He left his home country of Jamaica to go live in the Netherlands, a country he never heard of before. Subsequently, the universe led Sean-Claude to spaces, both mental and physical, he never expected to be. It took some getting used to, but finally he’s able to live his truth.

It was like a breath of fresh air for Sean-Claude to talk about his favourite tunes. Every day he, a trans, black refugee, has to face countless hardships, so freely talking about music was a lovely piece of escapism. It can be very tiring to be a political activist, so sometimes you just rather want to not think about any of the troubles you’re facing and talk about other interests. For him, the power of music as a way to relax and calm down proved stronger than ever.

What might be my favourite part of this episode was how our conversation kind of derailed. We started out talking about reggae and how it might be a little bit cliché for him to like this type of music. We ended up digging through festival line-ups and different booking deals. Let us know what you thought of this episode through the contact link below!

CW: Racism, Transphobia

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Flashback Track: Luther Vandross – Never Too Much
Queer Artist Spotlight: Frank Ocean – We All Try
Best Live Experience: Ziggy Marley – Rebellion Rises
Most Recent Discovery: Ari Lennox & J. Cole – Shea Butter Baby

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Be Gay, Do Crimes

Belgium and the Netherlands left Brenda in a bad place, both mentally and physically. Now, it seems like she’s adhering to a stereotype, but Finland is where this metalhead found some peace of mind. However, within the metal scene there still seems to be some room for improvement. Listen to her stories about what it’s like to be gay, a woman and a metal fan.

The Finnish language fascinates me endlessly. It probably was not the best idea to talk about this with someone who doesn’t speak Finnish as their first language. It was my only option at hand though, so I didn’t want to pass on this opportunity. In case you know more about gender in Suomi, and want to chat about it on this podcast, hit my up through the contact link below.

In the end, with all the different subjects like queerphobia and misogyny covered, we needed to make some cuts. For example, we didn’t even get around to talking about fat shaming or polyamory. Another excuse for anyone out there to get in touch so we’ll be able to cover these issues. Also, just in general, let us know your thoughts about the episode!

CW: Homophobia, Harassment, Misogyny

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Flashback Track: Metallica – Enter Sandman
Queer Artist Spotlight: Judas Priest – Breaking the Law
Best Live Experience: Gojira – Flying Wales
Most Recent Discovery: Mokoma – Laske hiljaa mielessä sataan

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I told ya I would talk a lot about Poland

It feels like the start of a second series. QueerSounds is back with Aga and their stories from Poland, both pre- and post the fall of communism. Let’s dive into how the recent history of this country effects the daily lives of queer locals now. To be honest, it’s not great.

The episode was running very long so I had to cut a considerable part about Polish healthcare workers who provide trans people with gender affirming procedures. Unfortunately, the details escaped me. Though, as complex as it might be, I would recommend reading up on it. On the other hand, it is also very understandable if you would rather avoid the queerphobia that is so wide spread in this country.

The music in the episode is probably one of my favourites because of the postpunk Aga brought to the table. It’s not a secret i’m a fan of punk music, so bands like Bauhaus and Republika are right up my alley. Remember, we’d love to year from you and your favourite music. Drop a line through the contact link below!

CW: Homophobia, Queerphobia, Harassment, Police Brutality

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Flashback Track: Republika – Smierc w Bikini
Queer Artist Spotlight: Janelle Monáe – Q.U.E.E.N.
Best Live Experience: Rammstein – Deutschland
Most Recent Discovery: Bauhaus – A God in an Alcove

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Keep me Caffeinated

As you might expect, hosting a podcast can be an expensive endeavour. RSS-hosting, Music Licencing, travel costs, the whole lot. It adds up. But good news! If you enjoy QueerSounds you can at least keep this podcast caffeinated. Go to https://www.buymeacoffee.com/QueerSounds to donate. Or keep your eyes peeled for a flashy plug-in on this website.

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An unstoppable force versus an immovable object. As long as racism is still a thing, Axmed will keep on fighting it. Partly by reclaiming his Somali background and by lifting up other queer black people. But most of all by reclaiming all parts of his identity at all times. From there, positive remarks from other Somali people always remind him what he’s fighting for. Encounters like those are affirming as wel as simply heartwarming.

Obviously, all the artists picked today are from Somali descent for a reason. This country’s musical history is underappreciated, and often ignored. There are so many cool Somali artists, ranging from modern day rap, to a long history of jazz artists. One of them even ended up having a political career. Check out the episode to learn more.

Next to this impressive list of his country’s musical culture, Axmed also enjoys Techno and House parties. Fed up with Amsterdam’s club culture, its lack of black queer safe spaces in particular, he co-founded Dance With Pride. This grass roots initiative, aptly labeled ‘A Proud Reunification of Dance Music and Queer Culture’ isn’t afraid to get political either. They party one minute and call out racism another, which is something other organisations should join them in. Especially because this concerns the city that hosts the biggest annual Dance conferences.

CW: Racism, War, Assassination and some Sexual Content

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Flashback Track: Faadumo Qaasin Hilowle – Waa Habeenkii
Queer Artist Spotlight: Sadeeq Ali – Get The Cake
Best Live Experience: Saado Cali Warsame – Yaa Kuu Warama
Most Resent Discovery: Sun – Honeycomb

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It’s a Really Weird System

With her own full transition being over and done, Sophie Schers mainly focuses on the struggles of others by changing the system from within. Both though the city council and nationally operating lobby groups she fights for the rights of trans people, disabled people, women, and so on. Sounds impressive, but being able to retreat into a nice family home or a vacation in Sweden offers some well needed moments to charge back up.

TW: mentions of fascism, racism, transphobia

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Flashback Track: Herman van Veen – Zo Vrolijk
Queer Artist Spotlight: Ah-Mer-Ah-Su – 7-15-13
Best Live Experience: Regina Spektor – Samson
Most Recent Discovery: Nadja Evelina – Beach House

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9: Not the Easiest Google Trip

TW: Explicit mention of racism, exoticism, depression

With mind all over the place and dito music taste, Jace is just trying to figure it all out. Childhood trauma and systematic oppression, on top of a good whole dose of being queer. It’s understandable why they’re having a hard time putting thoughts into words.

Flashback Track: M.I.A. – Paper Planes
Queer artist Spotlight: Black Dresses – Death/ Bad Girl
Best live experience: PUP – DVP
Most recent discovery: Vektor – Recharging the Void

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8: Reclaim pop Music

How pop music became Queer culture? Well, it’s always been Queer culture. Manju Reijmer explains perfectly how he, a brown cis gay man, can identify with straight blonde pop princesses. As well as how he helps the Dutch Public Broadcasting Network acknowledge social issues through web-series.

Flashback Track: P!nk – Like a Pill
Queer Artist Spotlight: Alan Manken – Proud of Your Boy
Best Live Experience: Moses Sumney – Make Out in My Car
Most Recent Discovery: Mike Jack Dean – Bij je Zijn

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7: For Everyone Represented by Me

It’s a song as old as queerness itself. Whenever we don’t feel catered to by whatever type of media, we go out of our way to create our own representation. Heck, that’s in part why this podcast came to be. With Romy, an androgynous person of colour (living that afab with a low voice due to a cold lifestyle), this is just as much the case.

Flashback Track: Wham! – The Edge of Heaven
Queer artist Spotlight: CupCakke – LGBT
Best live experience: Hudson Mohawke – System
Most recent discovery: The Internet – Come Over

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6: I Can Take This

Not the protest march type, Lu Lodi tries to help trans and other queer people in whatever way she can. Just acknowledging each others existence can seem small but carries huge power. This Brasilian support group host knows that like no other.

Flashback Track: Bia Bedran – Pedalinho
Queer Artist Spotlight: Tami T – Trans Femme Bonding
Best live experience: Broken Social Scene – Forced to Love
Most recent discovery: Lizzo – Juice

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