Janelle Monae doesn’t like to talk about her personal life, but she opened up a bit about her sexuality during a recent interview with Sway in the Morning to promote her new album, Electric Lady.
“Women are amazing…and so are guys,” she said. “There’s nothing wrong with being bisexual, there’s nothing wrong with being lesbian or gay. I am an advocate. I have friends who are in same sex relationships and I feel love has no sexual orientation. Live has no religious belief. Love is the purest and most important thing we can possess for ourselves and for others.”
The gay rumors have been circulating for a while but picked up a new life after tracks from Monae’s new project were released. In “Q.U.E.E.N.” she sings, “Am I a freak because I love watching Mary?” and “Hey sister am I good enough for your heaven?” And in “Givin Em What They Love,” she talks about a woman following her for some “undercover love.”
When Sway asked — bluntly! — if she likes men or women, Monae shied away from a straight answer.
“I keep my personal life very much to myself. I want everybody to focus on my music,” she explained. “I also don’t want to let anybody down. I want women to still be attracted to me. Go get my album! I want men to still be attracted to me so I have to be political in this. So I can’t really tell y’all!”
During an interview with Pride Source earlier this week, the 27-year-old songstress said she “actually have never heard [the gay rumors]” until now.
“This is the first time I’m hearing it. But I will say that a lot of my work always comes from an authoritative stance,” she told the site, “so it may not be about me; it may just be about a story, or something that I’ve witnessed, or my imagination. You just never know.”
She went on to say that goal for her new project is to unite various communities so she’s happy people are relating to the content. “I don’t think there’s anything wrong with being gay or lesbian or straight or black or green or purple, so I’m okay with that,” she said.
“I have songs on ‘The Electric Lady’ – from ‘Sally Ride’ to ‘Electric Lady’ to ‘Q.U.E.E.N.,’ and the list goes on – where I definitely thought of the gay community in terms of a community that is oftentimes discriminated against and marginalized,” she said. “Again, when I speak about the android, it’s the other. And I think, again, you can parallel that to the gay community, to the black community, to women – we have so many things in common, and we sometimes don’t know it when we allow small things to get in the way. So this music is meant to inspire and bring wings to those who are weak and grace to those when they are strong.”
“I’m a uniter,” she said. “I won’t allow myself to be a slave to my own interpretation of myself nor the interpretations that people may have of me. I just live my life, and people can feel free to discuss whatever it is that they think and use whatever adjectives they feel. It’s a free country.”
During a 2010 interview with Rolling Stone, Monae said, “The lesbian community has tried to claim me but I only date androids. Nothing like an android — they don’t cheat on you.”