Gay Country Artist, Steve Grand, Takes Youtube by Storm
Summertime, whiskey, lust, longing, and rejection mark all the key ingredients of an unrequited summer love gone wrong. They also underlie the story behind the song and video for Steve Grand’s latest, and first, YouTube sensation “All American Boy”.
What makes the video “radical” is that Grand is an up-and-coming country artist who is unapologetic about the fact that he’s gay. The song follows a crush developed on a male friend of his and the accompanying video features footage of Steve making his move only to be turned away, left to watch as the object of his affection grinds with the blonde by the campfire.
The song and video have accrued over 630,000 views as of this writing. In addition to being catchy as hell– the song also further affirms what proponents of equality have said all along. Regardless of your gender identity or sexual orientation, we’re all the same. Rejection sucks and even the most innocent summer love can serve as fodder for your next single.
While the internet is abuzz over Grand’s video, he joins a legion of other gay artists who are proud and out. From Rufus Wainwright to Jenny Owens to Adam Lambert and Tegan & Sara, this is one taboo that’s quickly fading further aided by recent artists like Lady Gaga and Macklemore who’ve taken to defending the rights of others through song.
While Grand failed to win over his American Boy, this song/ video marks a victory in the artist’s own evolution. After coming out as gay when he was in 5th grade, Grand’s parents put him through five years of straight therapy. Now 23, Grand is able to embrace his identity while leveraging an experience had at a summer camp when he was 13 to speak to the sort of bittersweet loss sure to resonate across the spectrum.