Cat Burns: 'There's Still So Much Queer People Need To Fight For'

"There’s a community waiting to hold you with open arms."
Cat Burns
Cat Burns
Adama Jalloh

It’s been an exciting 12 months for British singer-songwriter Cat Burns.

A year ago, you’d be forgiven for not having heard of her, but in the last few months she’s had huge success with her single Go (held off the top of the charts only by Harry Styles’ mammoth As It Was), collaborated with Sam Smith and performed everywhere from the Royal Albert Hall to James Corden’s US talk show.

Here, we speak to Cat about the first queer character she remembers connecting to, her personal coming out anthem and the LGBTQ+ artists who are “changing the way we view everything”...

Who was the first queer person you can remember looking up to?

I didn’t have a queer person I can remember looking up to when I was young, I only had my realisation when I was 19.

Cat Burns
Cat Burns
Adama Jalloh

What was the first LGBTQ+ TV show or film that you remember resonating with you?

It wasn’t necessarily an LGBTQ show, but Pretty Little Liars. The character Emily was a lesbian, which at my young age I didn’t realise I resonated with, but I had a real connection to that character.

Shay Mitchell as Emily in Pretty Little Liars
Shay Mitchell as Emily in Pretty Little Liars
Warner Bros

What’s a song you associate with your own coming out?

My song Free! And Dodie’s She.

What was the most recent LGBTQ+ show or film that made an impact on you?

I absolutely loved Moonlight. It was a coming of age story that had sexuality as a part of it. I also loved Atypical.

Who is your ultimate queer icon?

Marsha P Johnson.

Who is a queer person in the public eye right now that makes you excited about the future?

Lil Nas X, Maddie Zahm, Kehlani and so many people who are changing the way we view everything.

Lil Nas X performing at the Grammys
Lil Nas X performing at the Grammys
Emma McIntyre via Getty Images

Why do you think Pride is still so important today?

Because we are so far from where we need to be, Pride is still a protest march and there’s still so much we need to fight for.

What’s your message for the next generation of LGBTQ+ people?

Come out only when you’re ready and it’s safe to. There’s a community waiting to hold you with open arms.

Watch the music video for Cat Burns’ Go below:

Before You Go