girl in red lesbian queer pop rock singer montreux jazz festival
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July 13, 2022
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girl in red rocked the Montreux Jazz Festival and our world

Do you listen to girl in red? Because we definitely do! More than queer lingo, it’s an injunction, and if you still have missed girl in red, which is pretty hard nowadays with her songs always trending on TikTok and her name used as a queer signifier, now it’s your time to redeem yourself.

Casual in her own merch t-shirt that she defends wearing because of a stained wardrobe, Marie Ulven arrived on the Lab stage of the Montreux Jazz festival full of energy. The venue is full of pride flags, with an overwhelming majority of young women. Nothing surprising though, when we know the music of “La fille en rouge”, as she adorably translated for the French-speaking audience.

For queer women my age, girl in red was probably the background music of their first love. It was certainly mine when the single that got her famous, “i wanna be your girlfriend”, was released in 2018. Marie Ulven was still in high school, producing her first tracks in her bedroom after learning the guitar pushed by “The Perks of Being a Wallflower”. Now undeniably a queer icon, the Norwegian singer-songwriter is the safe space for thousands of young queer people across the world.

With a certain nonchalance and a stream-of-consciousness way of talking, Marie Ulven has something of a rockstar. In her new album, “if i could make it go quiet”, she has moved towards more upbeat songs, with punk-rock influences. Always very honest in her lyrics, she tackles her OCD and her fight with intrusive thoughts in “Serotonin”, jealousy in “You Stupid Bitch.” and longing with “hornylovesickmess”. She recently released the music video of that last song, which was directed by none other than Hunter Schafer. She is known to give it all in her concerts, and that one was no different, with her stage diving to end the show.

The 23-year-old even admitted that she hadn’t realized how big the festival was, having a realization moment when she wanted to buy a Keith Haring poster and realized that it was, in fact, the 1983 edition of the Montreux Jazz's poster. This raw honesty is what makes us love the artist even more, and what makes her so relatable for a whole generation of queer individuals tired of appearance and shallow empowerment through a thick layer of rainbow paint. girl in red is continuing her “make it go quiet” tour next year in Europe in 2023, check out the dates and stream her last album!

Pictures © FFJM 2022 Emilien Itim

Article by Chloé Bruère-Dawson

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