Having pride and confidence in yourself and your sexuality is important, which is why when you run across songs about girls liking girls, it can hit you hard on an emotional level. So in this article, we’re going to countdown our favorite songs on this unique topic, which hopefully you’ll find just as inspiring as we do.
Songs About Girls Liking Girls You’ll Love
Let’s kick this off with a song by Hayley Kiyoko.
Girls Like Girls by Hayley Kiyoko
Hayley Kiyoko’s “Girls Like Girls” broke ground with simple words: “Girls like girls like boys do, nothing new.” First rising to fame as a child actress, Kiyoko shifted to a focus on her solo music in 2013. But in 2015, she was ready to open up about a part of her life she had never publicly discussed. Her coming out song quickly became a hit and provided representation for her audience of younger fans that had grown up watching her on TV.
Rather than a melancholy, downtrodden track that focuses on the struggles that come with being gay, Hayley Kiyoko took a more confident approach. The lyrics tell of starting a relationship with a girl who already has a boyfriend, reimagining the “steal your man” trope often heard in songs. But the song’s playful and cocky lyrics don’t overshadow its true intentions or meanings. At its core, “Girls Like Girls” is a song of acceptance and joy.
She Keeps Me Warm by Mary Lambert
Upon first listen of this song, you might try to place where you have heard it before. Released in 2013, Miranda Lambert expanded her contribution to Macklemore & Ryan Lewis’ “Same Love” to create “She Keeps Me Warm.” After being asked to collaborate with Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, Lambert had little time to write the chorus of “Same Love” that would later go on to be a hit of her own. But she pulled through, writing lines that would form the heart of an anthem for gay marriage.
Keeping the chorus intact from “Same Love,” “She Keeps Me Warm” sets the lyrics against a more mellow backdrop. The new lyrics confess the things Lambert loves about her partner and her desire for their relationship to grow. But it’s still the chorus that gives the song its power: “I can’t change, even if I tried / Even if I wanted to.”
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Kissing Lessons by Lucy Dacus
Equal parts endearing, amusing, and bittersweet, “Kissing Lessons” recounts a tender memory from adolescence. In this confessional track by Lucy Dacus, she shares her experience practicing kissing in 2nd grade with her childhood friend Rachel. Dacus tells of tying her hair back, applying the aggressively saccharin lip gloss that ruled the early 2000’s, and having her first kiss.
Although the song is brief and unconventionally structured, she finds the time to walk the walk through the conflicting thoughts that arose during this vulnerable moment. Discussing the inspiration behind the track, Dacus said that as a child, she wasn’t “thinking in any way, ‘oh, this is gay,’” but looks at the kiss through a “different lens” after coming out.
The song was crafted with nostalgia in mind, clearly reflected in every step of the process from composition to release. Instead of immediately releasing the song on a streaming platform, Dacus debuted the single by posting flyers with a phone number that would play “Kissing Lessons” if you called, harkening back to the days of lining up outside of record shops or waiting by the radio to hear your new favorite song. From the lyrical content to the promotional release, the song forces you to revisit some of the painfully awkward and charming moments of youth.
She by Dodie
Right at the opening line of Dodie’s “She,” a devastating question is heard by a teenager questioning her sexuality: “am I allowed to look at her like that?”
This song describes a teenager’s first time falling in love with another girl. The original version, posted in a YouTube video recorded in Dodie’s bedroom, feels as though it was taken straight out of her diary. The EP version has a bit more flair, but while she smoothed out some of the raw edges, it still maintained the youthful clumsiness of the original version.
The adolescent songwriting shows throughout the track, resulting in lyrics that are naïve and unfledged. But although the song sounds a bit green, Dodie captured the conflict of unrequited teenage love in a way that a more season songwriter would have been too polished to. Both tender and cliché, “She” recounts a common coming-of-age experience for LGBTQ+ girls. If you’re looking for songs about girl crushes, you really can’t go wrong with this Dodie track.
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Come To My Window by Melissa Etheridge
Released shortly after Melissa Etheridge came out, “Come to My Window” is a rock anthem reminiscent of a sapphic Romeo and Juliet. The track was released in 1992, a time when LGBTQ+ musicians were encouraged to keep their sexualities a secret. But ahead of the release of her fourth album, Etheridge was ready to take the plunge. “Come To My Window” was met with praise from fans and critics and earned Etheridge her second Grammy Award for Best Female Rock Vocal Performance.
The song describes the ache of wishing you could be with someone when you are apart and the relationship is difficult. Etheridge said that the bridge of this song is one of the best that she’s written, and for good reason. The bridge is stunningly performed, but the lyrics are as powerful as her vocals: “I don’t care what they think / I don’t care what they say / what do they know about this love anyway?” Underneath the veil of secrecy, “Come To My Window” is a song of longing and acceptance.
Hit the Back by King Princess
Looking for a more direct, risqué song? Look no further than King Princess’ mischievous track “Hit the Back.” While King Princess has never shied away from writing about her sexuality, this song elevates her openness to another level. The lyrics are filled with explicit sexual remarks and requests, well delivered in King Princess’ confident and flirtatious voice.
The upbeat, dance feel of the song complements the playful lyrics. While it is a stark contrast from some of the tender romantic songs discussed on this list, “Hit the Back” explores a much more fun aspect of queer relationships.
Sleeping Alone by k.d. lang
A slightly saucy song enticing a lover to spend the night, k.d. lang’s “Sleeping Alone” is equal parts sensual and amusing. The song never appeared on one of lang’s albums, however she released a version live from the Majestic Theatre. While the song isn’t quite as forward as “Hit the Back,” the double entendres certainly get a rise out of the audience.
Hoots and hollers can be heard from the crowd following the lyrics “how about a shower? / We could both blow off a little steam.” Delivered with a laid-back jazzy sound, many would swoon over the queer icon cheekily crooning that morning coffee tastes best “with a little cream.”
You and Me On The Rock by Brandi Carlile
Considering her recent performances of Joni Mitchell’s music, it’s no surprise that one of Brandi Carlile’s newest songs takes you back to the 70’s Laurel Canyon music scene. “You and Me On The Rock” centers around family, love, and weathering rough times together. Carlile wrote the playful folk tune about her wife Catherine and their rock-solid bond.
The lyrics are quaint and picturesque but work well with Carlile’s folksy charm. Her rough but effortless voice gives the song a casual flavor; it doesn’t sound like a perfectly crafted showstopper meant to woo a new love, but instead a simple celebration of the life they have already built together.
Released in 2021, this song captures something many couples are feeling in the pandemic. Quarantine offered a unique opportunity to strengthen relationships and discover new things about those close to you. After spending so much time together, Carlile’s lyrics “me out in my garden and you out on your walk / Is all the distance this poor girl can take without listenin’ to you talk” ring true for many. “You and Me On The Rock” is simultaneously a pandemic-romance anthem and a joyful reflection on the things that truly matter.
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Power of Two by the Indigo Girls
A song countdown about girls liking girls wouldn’t be complete without the Indigo Girls. The lesbian folk-rock duo have been collaborating since 1985 and have inspired a generation of LGBTQ+ musicians. Many of their songs look at love through an introspective lens, including the comforting ballad “Power of Two” which focuses on the sensitive, vulnerable aspects of a relationship.
Similarly to “You and Me On The Rock,” this song focuses on a lifetime of companionship rather than a fleeting romance. So much of loving someone is being willing to face hard things together, a concept well portrayed in “Power of Two.” The lyrics are reassuring and offer support and encouragement when it is needed the most.
The song was penned by Emily Sailers, who brought her delicate folk sensibilities to the track. The other half of the duo, Amy Ray, offered her alto harmonies to help ground the song. The Indigo Girl’s brilliant countermelodies not only are their signature sound but seem to reinforce the meaning of the lyrics. Almost 30 years after the song’s release, “Power of Two” has stood the test of time and still remains a charming love ballad.
Loving Her by Katie Pruitt
Written as a response to judgement about her girlfriend, “Loving Her” finds a way to handle religious backlash against same-sex couples with joy. The song’s country sound defies the stereotypes of both what people expect out of the genre and the type of music LGBTQ+ people should make.
The lyrics walk a fine balance of being sarcastic but not snarky and showing compassion but not bending to expectations. “Loving Her” steals the spotlight from hate and puts the focus back on what really matters. If you’re seeking a country songs about girls liking girls, give the Katie Pruitt track a try.
The songs on this list just begin to scratch the surface of LGTBQ+ music. Thanks in part to some of the trailblazers on this list, a new generation of musicians are stepping forward to share the love. Songs about girls liking girls are finally taking center stage and stepping into the spotlight. Here’s to the artists who have shared their truth, and to all of the great music ahead.
- This article was written by Carissa and edited by Michael.