Rising pop icon Hayley Kiyoko‘s most well-known song, ‘Girls Like Girls’ was released five years ago, on June 24th 2015. Five years after its release alongside the legendary music video, it still remains a must-listen this Pride Month. The video, a love story between two young women directed by Kiyoko herself, quickly went viral and today has well over 100 million views.
‘Girls Like Girls’ didn’t go viral simply because it’s a fantastic piece of pop perfection, nor did it go viral just because lesbian narratives were still a novelty in mainstream pop. No – ‘Girls Like Girls’ went viral because it struck a chord with all of the young people that finally felt represented in pop music, carried by the elementally simple yet revolutionary lyrics “girls like girls like boys do / nothing new”. This heroic song was the first time that Hayley Kiyoko had opened up about her sexuality in her music, and to this day elicits the same emotional response from fans.
‘Girls Like Girls’ is criminally under-appreciated and its effect on the pop music industry must not be underestimated. It was a turning-point in representation that paved the way for queer musicians to express themselves in the mainstream, and to this day Kiyoko uses her platform to raise awareness of issues faced by the LGBT community. She is a real icon who constantly challenges heteronormativity in the music industry, and she is someone we should all be celebrating this Pride Month.
Hayley Kiyoko’s ‘Girls Like Girls’ is available via Steel Wool Records.