“Society has long been built around subconscious gender constructs and even within the LGBTQ community, we are only just beginning to unravel our learned opinions to perceived gender norms,” Jack Tracy says. Jack Tracy’s new single, “Prince,” is an 80s synth pop anthem that shines the spotlight on toxic masculinity within the gay community. In “Prince”, Jack Tracy urges his masculine partner step away from stereotypes and embrace his feminine side. He believes the only way the world can evolve is through mindfulness; reflecting why we take on the gender roles we play. “If reexamination of expression is going to start anywhere, it should be within the LGBTQ community,” he asserts.
Directed by JJ Bozeman, the music video for “Prince” echoes the song’s critique of gender labels. It depicts disgruntled boyfriends and girlfriends as they drag their male lovers into an art installation where the men are confronted with gender deconstruction. Bozeman, an actor who most recently starred in the film, Snowflake, appears in drag in the video. Another actor, Haulston Mann, who starred in the third season of the LGBTQ series, History, playing the role of a muscled-up, cocky, game-player, takes on an androgynous persona in “Prince”. Jack, of course, takes it one step further. He is portrayed in the video as a celestial angel prince. “The inspiration came from the way cupid is portrayed in Renaissance paintings,” he explains. “I really wanted to do a music video that worked more with imagery over narrative.”
“Prince” follows Jack Tracy’s previous releases from his Love Yah ep, the title track and “The Feels”. Where “Love Yah” was an upbeat club track, and “The Feels” was broody and dark, “Prince” sits right in the middle of the EP and, as Jack Tracy explains, “bridges the transition from the dance songs to the moody mid-tempos. If Love Yah was a theatrical show, ‘Prince’ closes Act One.”
He also hopes fans are willing to embrace a pop song that is about something other than partying or their own fierceness. “I want concept songs to come back into vogue,” he says.
Jack Tracy is the founder and owner of Necessary Outlet, a production company that has produced several LGBTQ works including the feature film, Snowflake; the audio drama podcast, Community; three critically acclaimed seasons of the web series History; and comedies Big Law and Millennial Memoir. Snowflake and all three seasons of History are now streaming on Dekkoo. Jack and JJ will also be premiering a brand-new weekly LGBTQ dating-themed podcast based off of Jack’s pandemic-era web series, called “Dying Along, Together” in June, featuring special guest stars Sherry Vine, comedian and drag-enthusiast Mano Agapion, and more. The first six episodes of the podcast will be exclusively sponsored by sexual wellness product-maker Satisfyer.
Love Yah, Jack Tracy’s third studio album, follows his previous albums, Older and For You.
“Prince” follows Jack Tracy’s previous releases from his Love Yah ep, the title track and “The Feels”. Where “Love Yah” was an upbeat club track, and “The Feels” was broody and dark, “Prince” is an 80s synth pop anthem that shines the spotlight on toxic masculinity within the gay community. “Society has long been built around subconscious gender constructs,” Jack Tracy argues. “Even within the LGBTQ community, we are only beginning to unravel our learned opinions and kneejerk reactions to perceived gender norms.”
In “Prince”, Jack Tracy urges listeners to step away from stereotypes and embrace their feminine sides. He believes the only way the world can evolve is through mindfulness; reflecting why we take on the gender roles we play. “If reexamination of expression is going to start anywhere, it should be within the LGBTQ community,” he asserts. We spoke with the out artist from his Manhattan home.
How has your life been impacted by toxic masculinity?
Jack Tracy: In many ways I was fortunate to realize I was gay from a young age. However, realizing I wasn’t a normal boy, and seeing it as a zero-sum game, I almost completely abandoned any masculine interests and always thought of myself as one of the girls. It impacted me in dating during my 20s and 30s when masculinity was most prized. I was often deemed to be too queeny by my peers and men I was interested in. It warped my view on what I found to be attractive.
How should the LGBTQ community re-examine expression this Pride?
Jack Tracy: Outside of the progressive Twitter verse, I think most gay men still see themselves in a gender binary of heterosexual norms. Bottoms are the women and tops are the men. Things like that. I think we have a lot to think about in parallel with the non-binary conversation as we each individually decide where we fall on a spectrum.
Are you doing anything to embrace your feminine side?
Jack Tracy: I’ve tried to start being bolder in my music videos, playing with more feminine looks and makeup. But I identify as a cis man so I never want to appear as if I’m coopting a trend. For me, it’s more about breaking down the ideal of the masculine as my preferred romantic interest and becoming more open to different possibilities.
Name three things that make you scream Yassss!
Jack Tracy: A great drag mix, a new Janet Jackson record, and gaining a new fan!
Jack’s Tracy’s “Prince” is being distributed independently and is available on Apple Music, Spotify and all digital platforms. Follow Jack Tracy on Instagram @ jacktracyofficial
words: Jorge Trevino
Follow on Instagram @ jacktracyofficial