This afternoon I took sheet music to “If I Were a Boy” by Beyoncé to my voice lesson.
My teacher hadn’t heard it before, so I played it off of my phone as we followed through with the music. At the end she said, “Okay, cool. Some of the lyrics are a little weird, but I like this song.”
I sang through the song as she plunked the notes. We repeated a few times, and we were about to put the song away when she said, “Really think about how this song relates to you as you’re singing it. Think about the character. How would it feel to be boy? Maybe you’d be able to break some of the rules you’re grounded to and not get in trouble? I mean, what does this song mean to you?”
If I point one way and run, maybe she won’t notice…
“Think about that for next time,” she said.
Oh, thank god. Rhetorical.
The reason I connect so much to this song, obviously, is because I do know how it feels to love a girl. I know how it hurts. I know how to listen to her. I can relate with every line in the song. I don’t know if Beyoncé knew it, but she so casually, discreetly wrote a song for straight and gay women alike. Thanks, Bey.