The majority of American voices were ignored this past Tuesday, making Donald J. Trump the 2016 presidential election winner—a painful reminder how the electoral count is terribly outdated and the United States are in fact the Divided States of Racist, Xenophobic, Homophobic Misogynists. But with all backwards political shifts comes a flux of powerful, passionate art, and the spigot has already begun to flow.
Cue Shamir Bailey, the queer Vegas-based singer/songwriter, whose viral ear worm, “On The Regular,” transformed him into a critics’ baby before releasing his debut full-length, RATCHET. As a musician of color and one that sings in a femme falsetto, Bailey’s a much-needed artist under Trump’s regime, now using lyrics as his weapon on a track, “BREATHE,” which he uploaded to his unofficial Soundcloud.
“It’s hard to believe that we couldn’t see the doom that we have ahead of us,” he sings above a swirling, sludgy instrumental. “But it’s hard to breathe when death’s at eve, but I let go and I know I’m in a better place.”
The track’s release follows a personal Facebook post, where Bailey challenged straight white men and women to fight for marginalized Americans: “Am I giving up? No, but this is not my battle or your battle. I’m speaking to LGBT, black, POC, women—this is not our battle. We fought endlessly, but we are still the minority. To my straight white males and women who are disappointed in this outcome, this is your fight. Welcome to the fight that I have had to fight my whole life. Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not going down gracefully, but this is not our mess to clean up, but I will gladly hand you the broom.”