Queer Eye has a new trailer — with a fresh song from VINCINT.
The gay singer and songwriter recorded "Be Me" for the teaser of the new Netflix season, in which the Fab Five give "make-betters" to folks in Philadelphia, including a newly out priest. The song will also be available to download Thursday at 9 p.m. Pacific on iTunes, Spotify, and Deezer.
VINCINT, who recently celebrated the release of his debut EP, The Feeling, spoke with The Advocate about the inspiration behind the track, which will also soon be paired with a music video with the Queer Eye cast.
The gay entertainer also discussed the impact of the current health crisis on LGBTQ+ singers and how music can still uplift during the Pride season.
Read the conversation below, and don't miss VINCINT Friday at PRIDE's Virtual Prom, hosted by Todrick Hall and benefiting True Colors United.
The Advocate: Tell us how your musical partnership with Queer Eye and the Fab Five came to be.
VINCINT: I was sitting in my manager's hotel room in L.A. It was the day after my EP release show and he had just gotten a call saying that Queer Eye was looking for a new song. I suggested maybe I could write a new one for them. They told me that it needed to be done sooner rather than later and so I called the boys at [the musical group] Fly By Midnight. We went to the city that night. It said to write the song and sent over a version that night. And after a few versions and going back and forth we finally got the right version to them and they loved it.
What is the inspiration behind “Be Me”?
The inspiration for the song came from me sitting with the boys and talking through what it took for us to be where we are today. [We figured] out what made us strong and what helped us overcome and realizing that being ourselves on this journey that we’re all on together really was the foundation of us loving and being able to do [what] we love every day.
What is its message to the world?
I think the message to the world is that you can do whatever you want to do and be whoever if you want to be because you already are the person that you’re supposed to be. [You] just got to figure out how to be OK with that person and present that person to the world and know that it’s OK to be exactly who you are. You shouldn’t have to change or you shouldn’t want to change for the opinions or approval of others.
The song is the soundtrack of the trailer for the upcoming season, in which we meet the heroes: a newly out priest, a tall woman, and a mother, among others. What’s the significance of that pairing to you?
I think the pairing is serendipitous because each of their stories really plays into the meaning of the song. It’s finding out exactly who you are and realizing that the person that you are is never the issue or a problem. It’s the solution. It’s the answer.
A music video with the Fab Five is forthcoming! What can you tell us about it?
All I can say about the video is that it’s very cute and [there's] lots of little surprises in it. I’m excited to show everyone exactly what we got a chance to do on our own. And it’s also all shot on an iPhone and that’s the best part about it. We had to be creative in our own homes and it turned out perfect.
As a gay viewer, how did Queer Eye – the original series and the reboot — impact you personally?
I think for me, seeing five gay men on television being exactly who they are and holding nothing back and also inspiring was super impressionable on young me because I needed to see that kind of figure on television. [It made me] know that I could have that life and be happy and fulfilled in front of others and helping others as well by just being myself.
A running thread between the iterations is "All Things (Just Keep Getting Better)," the Queer Eye theme song by Widelife, which was originally performed by Simone Denny and later remixed by Betty Who. What is the message of this song to you, and why do you think it has longevity?
I think it’s lasted so long because of the messages in the title of the song. It adds and gives hope whenever you hear it. From the first line, it just [can] build you up and let you know that even if it’s not good right now, things will get better and they’ll keep getting better and it’s because of you that they do. It’s because of the mind-set that you have the things that you look forward to and the things you work hard on — the things that you love and people that you love. And it speaks to knowing exactly what the future will hold for you because you believe that things will be better.
What does it mean to you to be a part of this show’s legacy now?
It’s honestly surreal that I’m a part of this because I’ve watched the show from the very beginning with the original five, so to be a part of it now, it’s kind of incredible. I feel like I’m a part of this movement that has been helping people for the last 10 years. It’s insane to be a part of this and I think it’s so cool that I get to add my little piece to this part of history. I’m very honored.
The current health crisis has impacted all of us — but many entertainers like yourself make a living from live performances. How have you adapted during this extraordinary time?
It is such a crazy time and I think that because I do make most of my living touring, going out, and doing live shows I’ve had to make an adjustment for sure. I think it’s been a blessing for me to have so many opportunities come to me virtually and to be able to do them online and still connect with my fans and connect with people and different brands — that’s been helping to assist me. And just finding different ways to be creative and productive has been helping me make money as well because I am not just a singer, I'm a songwriter as well and have been writing for others. It’s been going well.
It’s almost Pride — but most celebrations have been canceled or postponed. How can music help keep the season alive?
Music right now is everything. It’s been keeping me happy and saving me every day from going on a spiral. It’s gonna be really important I think for people to hear music that uplifts them and makes them want to feel like they can overcome and push forward through all of this and see a light at the end of the tunnel when all this is over. And so music is the top priority right now I believe.
What are you listening to now?
Whitney Houston, Celine Dion, Aretha Franklin, Stevie Wonder, the O’Jays .... just stuff that brings my heart peace.
What’s next for you?
I’ve been writing a bunch and all this and kind of seeing where I wanna go next with music and what I wanna say, and right now it feels really happy and light and my teenage self again. I really wanna put that kind of feeling and vibe out to the world. I needed it for sure. It’s been helping me and I think it’ll help some others. So right now it’s music, and I hope and think people love it.