Years & Years say it’s ‘sad’ more gay popstars don’t openly sing about men

Singer Olly Alexander says he uses male pronouns in some song lyrics but keeps others neutral

Years & Years have said it is “sad” more gay popstars do not openly sing about men.

The trio, who beat James Bay and Stormzy to top the BBC Sound Of 2015 poll in January, have spoken about the lyrics on their debut album ‘Communion’, which is released on Friday (July 10).

In a new interview with Digital Spy, frontman Olly Alexander explained that “all the songs are about sex or relationships” but that he only made gender specific references on a few of the tracks, sticking with a neutral ‘you and I’ for the others.


“It was important for me to get some male pronouns in some of the songs,” he told the site. “So I did it for ‘Real’ and ‘Memo’, and then one song on the deluxe. It is kind of sad to me that we don’t have gay popstars singing about men using a male pronoun, but that could change hopefully.”

“I’d like to hear a gay artist express their sexuality in a really open way. That’s something I’ve sort of tried to do a little bit on this album, but to be able to talk about sex is possibly new for gay artists, so I’d like to see that in the mainstream.”


“I’ve thought a lot about this, that relationship of ‘you and I'”, he continued. “I think that’s just how I learnt to use my voice as a songwriter, like whenever I write a diary because I wanted to hide who I was writing about, it would always be ‘you and I’.”

“I can’t speak for all gay people,” he added. “Because there are so many different issues, and experiences, and different shapes and sizes. But I can speak for myself, and that is what I’m doing.”

Years & Years recently announced a UK tour for October and November. The dates include a show at London’s O2 Brixton Academy on October 28 and follow a successful performance at Glastonbury Festival which saw fans shut out of the John Peel tent due to huge crowds.