During the summer of 2010 — the “Summer season of Summer season,” because it’s retroactively been dubbed — few songs sounded as great admire the season as Most productive Flee‘s honeyed “Boyfriend.” These two-and-a-half of minutes of hazy surf-pop breezed by in a bolt of oceanic sun, with singer Bethany Cosentino apparently pining for a man with the innocent attraction of a middle-college crush. “Sooner or later I’ll originate him mine and we’ll be collectively the complete time,” she sings. “We’ll take a seat and ticket the crack of morning time and survey into each other’s eyes.”
The charisma of romance and liberated love that dwell in Cosentino’s gliding chorus did no longer most absorbing make clear summer; additionally they led the music to become an unexpected LGBTQ+ anthem at some level of the final decade. Followers had misheard (and eminent) its foremost hook as “I wish she used to be my boyfriend” and used it to soundtrack wedding proposals and custom playlists. “This album actually helped & healed me via the toughest time of my existence when I was outed & kicked out of my dwelling on the age of 18,” a fan named Lauren tweeted at some level of Pride Month.
But in June, Cosentino revealed the music’s painful backstory on Twitter. “‘Boyfriend’ is honestly about a co-dependent, addictive, unhealthy obsession with somebody so I’ll GLADLY hand it over to the LGBTQ+ community to originate it their have. For true,” she wrote. “Take it. It belongs to you now.”
“To see of us capture it and flip it into this music that they’ve used in relation to proposing to their boyfriends, proposing to their girlfriends, serving to them reach to terms with their have sexual identity… I’m if truth be told admire, thank God that you guys took this and made it your have, due to this of I abhor it,” Cosentino informed MTV News with fun. “That if truth be told makes me most absorbing if truth be told feel if truth be told most absorbing, to clutch that one thing that I created that came from … an unhealthy express has been taken and reworked into one thing that is if truth be told definite and healthy for of us.”
When she performs the music now with Most productive Flee’s other half of, the multi-instrumentalist Bobb Bruno, she channels that positivity. It’s possible you’ll perchance well per chance also hear it on a livestream celebrating the 10-One year anniversary of Loopy For You, the album “Boyfriend” kicks off, tonight (August 14) via Seated, as well to on an as much as this level version of the music the place Cosentino makes use of inclusive language. “I wish she used to be my female friend,” she sings, also the use of the be conscious “partner” as well to they and them pronouns. The music used to be a 24-hour queer on August 7 for charity; Most productive Flee raised over $2,000 straight for the Trevor Venture.
“Or now no longer it’s if truth be told a bummer music,” Cosentino talked about. “But when I deem it now from this express of of us the use of it as an anthem for themselves and for their sexuality, and for their songs that they positioned on playlists for their partners and issues admire this, this music has an complete contemporary which methodology for me.”
The final decade-prolonged scamper of “Boyfriend” finds that an artist’s intent is better one element that performs into a artistic work’s reception, particularly in an age of social media-boosted fan edits and wish-success remixes. Or now no longer it will doubtless be a most absorbing instance of an artist celebrating this pivot and leaning into a closer belief of themselves that incorporates time and growth. That is one thing Cosentino’s pal, former tour mate, and livestream visitor Hayley Williams is conscious of properly.
The duo grew to become associates in 2012, and 5 years later, Most productive Flee and Paramore shared a North American 2017 lumber, including a Nashville cease the place Williams and Cosentino sang “Boyfriend” collectively onstage. “That tour, I judge, if truth be told bonded us in a methodology, due to this of we had been both going via breakups, and we had been both going via most absorbing unpacking heaps of trauma and issues that you ticket on the time you did no longer judge had been extensive immoral and unhealthy,” Cosentino talked about. “But in hindsight, it’s possible you’ll perchance well properly be admire, oh fuck. I judge that most absorbing experiencing that time with her used to be if truth be told mighty.”
In 2018, while performing with her band, Paramore, Williams announced they’d be successfully retiring “Misery Industry,” a signature music, from their dwell location. On the center of the decision used to be a line in its 2d verse — “Once a whore, it’s possible you’ll perchance well properly be nothing extra” — that, as she’d grown into her have feminism within the decade for the reason that music’s free up, she no longer felt contented singing. “I perceive it’s one in every of the band’s greatest songs but it must no longer be used to advertise the relaxation having to enact with feminine empowerment or solidarity,” she wrote on Instagram earlier this One year, when Spotify incorporated the music on a “Girls in Rock” playlist.
The benefit of social media permits artists to inform why “growth and progression,” as Williams wrote, can lead to a reevaluation of their work. Cosentino understands, and even after 11 years on Twitter, she still rides for being ready to spread positivity via the platform, even as she deeply is conscious of its faults. “It’s possible you’ll perchance well per chance also attach knowledge on the market so quickly and it will reach all these of us,” she talked about. “You might additionally uncover very quickly who you know is a chunk of shit and has immoral strategies and politics.”
There might be a third option: Tweets can spark steady dialogue between artists and fans, particularly as fans reach out in earnest with particular questions. One such fan referenced “Misery Industry” in a July tweet directed at John Darnielle, who’s been the say within the serve of The Mountain Goats for nearly 30 years. His 1994 music “Going to Georgia” is a fan favorite, fiercely cherished for its compelling mini-yarn about a man with a gun exhibiting as much as see an unexplored “you” personality and the hovering drama in Darnielle’s vocal provide. But he’s since disavowed it, asserting the music glamorizes toxic masculinity — a conclusion the tweeter named Christie asked him to reexamine.
“Howdy @mountain_goats as a girl and feminist going to georgia is a extensive frigid music, one in every of your coolest if truth be told, and it is top to re-avow it,” the fan wrote. “Same to @yelyahwilliams with misery enterprise.”
Darnielle answered with candor, as he’s in total carried out when beforehand asked concerning the music on Tumblr or when fans attach a query to it at concert events. “Yeah I mean you would must’ve had my trip of some of the most the bro-iest of bros sharing their reactions to it over a length of twenty years to if truth be told see it from my POV,” he tweeted. “I procure the place it’s possible you’ll perchance well properly be coming from but you see how our perspectives are necessarily diversified, yeah?”
“I originate now no longer play ‘Going to Georgia’ anymore due to this of I am unable to if truth be told reconcile how buoyant it’s miles with how great I abhor its narrator,” he beforehand elaborated. “After I wrote it, I loved that stress, but I was extra of an aesthete then and now I judge extra with my intestine. My intestine tells me the complete address ‘Going to Georgia’ is bogus, so as that is that.”
Time moves on, and signifiers commerce. “Misery Industry” and “Going to Georgia” procure retired; “Boyfriend” turns into an LGBTQ+ anthem. Meanwhile, some remain fixed. Snacks — Cosentino’s cherished fluffy orange cat and Loopy For You quilt massive title — remains Most productive Flee’s mascot properly into his golden years. He’s even obtained his have merch, naturally, as she’s had him for 12 years and counting.
“He has some health concerns and stuff, but right here is the most time I’ve ever spent with him,” Cosentino talked about of the previous 5 months. Most productive Flee had a 2020 tour lined up in toughen of their 2020 album, Continually The next day, they usually did play a temporary bolt of exhibits sooner than COVID-19 shut down the music industry. But the begin schedule has had its advantages, ones that lift those balmy days of summer 2010. “Or now no longer it’s good to most absorbing take a seat spherical with Snacks and ticket TV the methodology that it used to be within the early days. He’s the most absorbing.”