The Musiq Scene is back, and celebrating Pride! June is an emotional month for us all, and both celebrating and reflecting on community, identity, and doing our part to make it better is what it’s all about.
I chatted with Ariana Castelli, a Brooklyn-born singer and songwriter in the electronic music scene. Her single Love is Love – notably remixed by Paige – explores the journey of coming out to friends and family. Ariana reflects below on how her identity impacts her process, and the responsibility she feels to her fans and the community to spread love.
Who and what is your inspiration and why?
Icons inspired me to want to sing and dance, but its life and people that inspire me everyday to write and make music. Though everyday we learn something new, I’ve felt and have seen so much; high and lows and struggles of all kinds and that’s the stuff I like to write about – the diary of my life. If I could touch lives like music and lyrics have done and do for me everyday, then my mission in this life would be fulfilled. Music is therapy.
Why is music important to the queer community?
I think music in general is such an important outlet in life, in whatever community you’re involved.
What do you hope to achieve as an artist?
Being an artist who writes my own music has its vulnerabilities; I expose myself as if I’m naked. Through all of this, I know I’m not the only one going through these moments of life. I hope to touch people and fans that can relate to each experience I talk about.
Did music play an integral role in your coming out?
Absolutely. I remember my first love and relationship during that time before coming and out listening to Melissa Ethridge’s “Come To My Window”… singing the lyrics over and over from the bottom of my soul.
Given challenges facing our country and community, in your opinion, what is most needed for the queer community now?
I think that though there are many challenges there have also been victories in the world. I have faith in the youth and people coming together as one. I believe this to be true through trying times of tragedy like Pulse or Paris; people came together no matter what gender, color, religion, race, or sexuality. Through all the hate we show that love can conquer all. What’s needed for the queer community now is to continue to stand up for our freedoms in this world and stay united.
As a singer and songwriter I feel the need and responsibility to be a voice for all the souls who can’t put into words how they feel, and for the rest of the world to see in the end we’re all the same no matter what walk of life we come from.