Janelle Monáe Reveals She’s Dated Women And Men
The interview covers a range of topics, from Janelle’s alter ego Cindi Mayweather, to her experiences in therapy, her friendship with Prince and her Baptist upbringing in Kansas City but we focused primarily on her quotes about her sexuality and her new album Dirty Computer.
The publication pretty much opens with Monae’s admission that she has been a lover of ladies as well as men:
“Being a queer black woman in America,” she says, taking a breath as she comes out, “someone who has been in relationships with both men and women – I consider myself to be a free-ass motherfu**er.” She initially identified as bisexual, she clarifies, “but then later I read about pansexuality and was like, ‘Oh, these are things that I identify with too.’ I’m open to learning more about who I am.”
This should probably come as a surprise to no one. But hey you never know.
The writer does a great job of unpacking Monae’s veiled references noting,
She always ducked questions about her sexuality (“I only date androids” was a stock response) but embedded the real answers in her music. “If you listen to my albums, it’s there,” she says. She cites “Mushrooms & Roses” and “Q.U.E.E.N.,” two songs that reference a character named Mary as an object of affection. In the 45-minute film accompanying Dirty Computer, “Mary Apple” is the name given to female “dirty computers” taken captive and stripped of their real names, one of whom is played by Tessa Thompson. (The actress has been rumored to be Monáe’s girlfriend, though Monáe won’t discuss her dating life.) The original title of “Q.U.E.E.N.,” she notes, was “Q.U.E.E.R.,” and you can still hear the word on the track’s background harmonies.
The story also addresses her new music on Dirty Computer:
They’re the unfiltered desires of an overthinker letting herself speak without pause, for once. And she wants to help listeners gain the courage to be dirty computers too. “I want young girls, young boys, nonbinary, gay, straight, queer people who are having a hard time dealing with their sexuality, dealing with feeling ostracized or bullied for just being their unique selves, to know that I see you,” she says in a tone befitting the commander patch on her arm. “This album is for you. Be proud.”
Within the story it’s revealed that Monáe grew up in a massive, devoutly Baptist family in Kansas City, Kansas and that she hasn’t told the fam about her sexuality:
“I literally do not have time,” she says, laughing, “to hold a town-hall meeting with my big-ass family and be like, ‘Hey, news flash!’ ” She worries that when we visit Kansas City tomorrow, they’ll bring it up: “There are people in my life that love me and they have questions, and I guess when I get there, I’ll have to answer those questions.”
Over the years, she’s heard some members of her family, mostly distant ones, say certain upsetting things. “A lot of this album,” she says, “is a reaction to the sting of what it means to hear people in my family say, ‘All gay people are going to hell.’ ”
Her family pleasantly surprises her in the story by being only positive and welcoming and we think the rest of the world will too.
You can read the writeup in it’s entirety HERE.
Is anyone will be surprised by Janelle’s revelation?