Big Freedia Talks Pride Month and Her "Surreal" Feature on Beyoncé's "Break My Soul"
Big Freedia has plenty to celebrate this Pride Month. On Monday, it was revealed that the legendary New Orleans bounce artist is featured on yet another Beyoncé song (her first was "Formation") for the "Renaissance" singer's latest dance anthem, "Break My Soul." Thanks to a sample from Freedia's "Explode" and a renewed interest in house music, the anointed Queen of Bounce is feeling extra grateful for the moment she's having right now.
"I'm honored to be a part of this special moment, and I am incredibly grateful for all God's blessings."
"It feels surreal to be on a track with Beyoncé once again," Freedia tells POPSUGAR. "I'm honored to be a part of this special moment, and I am incredibly grateful for all God's blessings." Since the release of "Break My Soul," there's been an outpouring of fan love for Freedia — specifically for her contribution to the song's already-iconic hook. "Release ya anger, release ya mind / Release ya job, release the time / Release ya trade, release ya stress / Release the love, forget the rest," Freedia proclaims amid Beyoncé's vocals.
The upbeat track's arrival comes just in time for Pride, which Freedia always honors as an out-and-proud queer artist. How does she recognize the month-long celebration of LGBTQ+ love, acceptance, and individual expression? "I tour cities across America (and the world) and shake, of course!" she says. "My Pride shows are incredible, because so many of the fans are there to celebrate the same thing. The energy is really exciting!"
To kick off Pride Month, Freedia joined more than 150 LGBTQ+ stars and influencers — including Raven Symone, Hayley Kiyoko, and "RuPaul's Drag Race" alum Eureka O'Hara — for the first-ever nationwide Pride Eve celebration, led by Inviz.tv.
"Pride and Pride Eve means remembering those who sacrificed to change laws and open doors for the LGBTQ+ community."
According to Invisible Narratives copresident Catherine McEvoy, the company's Pride Eve event came together in just 60 days, and the response from stars — like Freedia — who wanted to participate was more than they'd anticipated. "[Our team] was making calls, and everyone was just spreading the word," McEvoy tells POPSUGAR. "We didn't have much time, and to our surprise, it was really overwhelming how supportive everyone was and how eager they were to lean in and support this initiative."
"Anything I can do to get people excited about Pride, I am up for," Freedia says. "Pride and Pride Eve means remembering those who sacrificed to change laws and open doors for the LGBTQ+ community. It's a time to mark and celebrate the contributions and progress that we've made."
At a time when LGBTQ+ rights are being threatened by violence across America and states are restricting trans youth's access to gender-affirming healthcare, Freedia notes that young people still give her hope that things can change for the better. "All over the world, I see that they are activated to make change," she says. "I know the news is anxiety-producing, but we can't let that get to us. I know people on the ground who are demanding change."
For those looking to help protect the rights of individuals in the LGBTQ+ community, Freedia suggests looking toward the many organizations — such as GLAAD, the Trevor Project, the Black AIDS Institute, and the National Center for Transgender Equality — already putting in the work. "[There are] so many ways to get involved," she says. "Start with your own city."