The Queer Music Revolution in Vietnam

Proceedings of the 5th International Conference on Future of Social Sciences and Humanities

Year: 2023



The Queer Music Revolution in Vietnam

Ly Quyet Tien




In the first decades of 2000, Vietnam has witnessed the striking appearance of LGBTQ pop music into the local entertainment business. A series of queer songs have been written to express the LGBTQ fight for visibility, identity and sensibility.
Their lyrics are largely about same-sex love: intimate feeling, a sense of gay destiny, unashamed sexuality, personal suffering, and power of love. These songs encompass all human feelings:  passion, hate, sorrow, anger, worries, and happiness. Composed for singers on stage, MV and movies, this music is diverse in its forms and styles ranging from traditional yellow music to modern popular music.
Starting in the 2010s and growing in tandem with Vietnam’s LGBT movement, this music has revolutionized Vietnamese popular music, touched the heart and won the sympathy of both Vietnam’s gay community and the larger public, marking the rising queer voice, contributing to a flourishing of LGBT culture, diversifying Vietnam’s extraordinary musical treasure and revolutionizing the colors of Asian pop music in times of gender liberation.
The paper examines the background into which Vietnamese LGBT music was born and develops: its styles, themes as well as its own particular and similar features with the regional boys’ love pop music. The paper also studies its identity, diversity in the entertainment industry and its revolutionary role in the promotion of the welfare of the Vietnamese LGBT citizens by furthering the native LGBT rights movement.

keywords: queer, music, culture, Vietnam, revolution