The Influence of WILLOW
Happy Pride Month, y’all! We’ve got some very exciting things coming up to celebrate this month at the station (check out the schedule here) including a new series on the blog! Similar to how we wrote about influential women musicians for Women’s History Month, some of us are writing about influential LGBTQ+ musicians for Pride Month! This is very near and dear to my heart so I couldn’t be more excited that this month has arrived and to be celebrating with all of you! To kick off this blog series, I wanted to talk about WILLOW who has made her way into the music I listen to like so many others have, through TikTok. I am undeniably on the gay side of TikTok and there are so many audios of songs by WILLOW that I hear all the time and it’s wonderful! Obviously I first knew her from “Whip My Hair” back when she was ‘Willow Smith’ but her music has evolved like crazy since then and is fantastic!
Her song “Wait a Minute!” is what first made its way onto my (and I imagine many people’s) TikTok which is such a bop! More recently “Meet Me At Our Spot” has made an appearance which I might like just a little bit better if I’m honest. I really love both of the albums that these songs come from, “Wait a Minute!” appearing on WILLOW’s first album ARDIPITHECUS and “Meet Me At Our Spot” being on WILLOW’s most recent album THE ANXIETY which was in collaboration with Tyler Cole. There’s a certain irony to THE ANXIETY which was released right before the pandemic began, and it definitely still feels very relevant as we continue to deal with the stress that COVID-19 has caused.
"t r a n s p a r e n t s o u l" featuring Travis Barker has also made its way onto my TikTok which I LOVE. Her albums WILLOW and The 1st are fantastic as well, I can’t forget that! Her music is very emotive with a solid range and always does a great job of showcasing her amazing voice.
Part of why I wanted to highlight WILLOW in this blog is because of how much she has accomplished at such a young age. Four full length albums before turning 21, that’s insane! And four incredible albums at that! On a personal level, listening to her experience as a bisexual woman as a bisexual woman myself makes me feel very represented. I haven’t really found many people who make music expressing romantic attraction to more than one gender and being able to jam to music like that feels really great. WILLOW also recently opened up about being polyamorous which carries an extra level of stigma for her as a woman of color. Regardless, it’s great to see her living her truth and helping to destigmatize polyamory.
Whether you identify with the LGBTQ+ community or not, I highly recommend checking out WILLOW’s music. She is incredibly talented and you are sure to feel the good vibes if you listen to her. Check out a playlist with some of my favorite WILLOW songs here!