Monifah talks being gay in the music industry

Monifah's "In Her Skin" Showcase

Monifah had already woven herself into the tapestry of R&B music history with her slew of ‘90s R&B hits. The singer made another major impact on the music scene when she came out as a lesbian last year and shared her relationship with her longtime girlfriend, Terez, on TV One’s “R&B Divas.” Now, in a new interview, Monifah is opening up about her experience of being gay in the music industry.

While chatting with the Huffington Post, Monifah discussed the different reactions to the coming out stories of Frank Ocean, Jarron Collins and Brittney Griner and explained that, although gay and bisexual women in the industry do have a different experience coming out than gay and bisexual man, it’s not an easier thing either.

“I don’t know if it’s easier. I just think it’s different. It’s a boys club. First of all, people directly go to the act of sex when it comes to homosexuality, which it’s not what it’s about. So of course it’s going to be a bigger deal about Jason Collins or Frank Ocean because it’s a guy,” Monifah explained.

“I also applaud them for their bravery and for paving the way for that next guy and for kids. So that they know that they’re not alone,” Monifah added. “And so that they know … they have every day and extraordinary people who look like them, that feel like them and that they can identify with. That’s what’s important.”

Monifah also discussed her coming out story and explained that she did it to live her life in the most authentic and fulfilling way.

“I didn’t come out to get accolades. I just showed my truth. I wasn’t trying to be a pioneer. I knew that it would help somebody and it has definitely helped me live my best life,” said Monifah.

The R&B songstress also explained that she wasn’t the only lesbian singer in the R&B scene in the ‘90s.

“Oh yes. There were a lot of women that were dating each other on the scene in the ‘90s. There were executives saying not to mess their money up and to keep it on the low [on both sides of the coin for the men and the women],” she explained.

And Monifah certainly wasn’t alone. Check out some other gay and bisexual R&B stars from throughout the years below. –nicholas robinson

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