“It ain’t about who ya love/it’s all about do ya love”
- From “Do Ya Love,” Michael Franti and Spearhead
#NiceUp And Dance: Queer-Friendly Reggae-Plus Playlist
There’s nothing that touches your body, mind and spirit quite like Reggae—same with all musics inspired by or related to it.
If you’re at all lyrics-conscious, finding queer-friendly Reggae and Dancehall music can be a bit of a minefield to say the least (not even going to get into live shows right now!) But if you proceed carefully, you’ll find that many Reggae and related jams songs apply to us whether or not the creators intended to include us in their musings.
(Plus you know we’ve got some Diana King up in this mix—the Strong Diva among Divas who recently came out to the press.)
This playslist includes bits and pieces of Reggae or Reggae-influenced tracks—there’s some Dancehall, Ska, Dance, Pop, Soul, R&B, and many songs here are simply “irie for irie’s sake.” Too, there are some uplifting, empowering cuts up in this: a Diva over here, a Diva over there….
Many of these performers are in the community or advocate for LGBTQ folks. Some songs were just co-opted for goodness’ sake. All and all, these tracks flow with that Nice Up And Dance Vibration, so we got you!
Erykah Badu – On & On Reggae Remix (A7 Remix) – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J6hIdyLjy2g
“On and on, and on and on, my cipher keeps moving like a Rolling Stone:” it’s a keep ya head up jam if you’ve ever heard one.
Lauryn Hill – Lost Ones (reggae version by reggaesta) – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yCsgMypQfQ0
Speaking of keeping your head up: we love you, Lauryn, peace and blessings. Much, much love. Lauryn Hill is one of the best rappers and/or toasting musicians in the game (and one of the most underrated—ironically).
Boy George – Turn 2 Dust OFFICIAL VIDEO – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UdnAqR2nqZU
Personal life aside (his violent incidents in the past were made very public), this track is a beautiful plea for getting spiritually aligned and replacing all hatred with love. The queer aesthetics in the video and diversity of dancers, singers and performers drive the point home with that much more inclusiveness. Nice one, George.
Mista Majah P The Maverick – Gay Marriage – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HiC6Sq3hrU4
You may know Mista Majah P from our earlier feature: he’s an openly-out, lion-hearted and prolific Reggae artist who advocates on our behalf via activism and in song regularly.
Beautiful how he reclaims the words “Legalize it” in the context of same sex marriage. You go, Brother.
No Doubt – Settle Down – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pb_zZ3xItPI
Fashion-diva and totally O.G. Ska-Pop Diva Gwen Stefani is a queen: what more do you need to know? Now get to skankin’…. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Skank_%28dance%29)
Bob Marley – One Love - www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ou5pzKuKP8w
Ziggy Marley – Set Your Piggies Free – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z7pU-ygiFPk
Adorable. True! Totally naturalist and organic. Love.
Michael Franti & Spearhead – Say Hey (I Love You) - www.youtube.com/watch?v=ehu3wy4WkHs
Speaking of walking around the world in naturally bare feet, Michael Franti’s all about it—he’s well-known for staying well-rooted, down to his strong, bare feet. Born and raised in San Francisco, Michael Franti is a regular advocate for many humanitarian causes, including LGBT advocacy.
Lauryn Hill – Lost Ones - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=56wrMKBLUvA
The Specials – Free Nelson Mandela – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AgcTvoWjZJU
Activism and love is powerful. Music helps support that power. This tune is forever uplifting.
Diana King ft GunJun – Yu Dun Know – Reggae Music Video – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZzP4cypb35c
This song doesn’t mess about. Of course she’s singing from a regal throne in this video. Yes, but of course.
Big Mountain – Baby I Love Your Way – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J5VQV8jTl5Q
Classic slow jam, plus: smiles for miles just waiting to happen.
And all the rest of the goodness…!
Michigan And Smiley-Nice Up The Dance Part 1+2. – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i-n2kElk_1A
Beyoncé – Standing On The Sun (SOS Reggae Mix) -http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ONZWRTACXHo
Ziggy Marley – Tomorrow People – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pnYfENJZVuI
Jimmy Cliff – I Can See Clearly Now - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0jsw_r0hILQ
Bob Marley – Iron Lion Zion - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tESLeLhYg0M
Matisyahu – King Without A Crown – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-w1Va4DqDWs
Private Domain and Pato Banton – Absolute Perfection -http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RjcHzRey7tw
Zap Mama – Rafiki - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H6onXt2bwDY
Michael Franti & Spearhead – Do Ya Love - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rNo41BY-Xc0
“Sunshine and loveiness/ain’t nobody feelin’/no ugliness tonight.”
Michael Franti & Spearhead – Skin On The Drum - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Z8qpqOlwic
“I keep on living with the fullness of The One/like the heat on the sun/or the skin on the drum.”
Michael Franti & Spearhead – All the Freaky People - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=580NWAdGaAo
Zap Mama & Erykah Badu – Bandy Bandy - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aEj9QZakbxU
Erykah Badu & Stephen Marley – I’m In Love With You - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lF0TzvImsl0
Luscious Jackson – Don’t Look Back - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g3tuSNMO-u4
Check out the entire playlist here:
May the irie, chill forces be with with you.