JoJo Siwa claims she invented ‘gay pop’ and the internet isn’t having it

As part of JoJo Siwa’s controversial rebrand, she’s decided to ignore all of queer culture and deem herself the first ever gay pop star.

“I said, ‘I want to start a new genre of music,’” Siwa explained in an interview with Billboard. “They said, ‘What do you mean?’ and I said, ‘Well, it’s called gay pop.’”

Despite saying she wants to “start a new genre,” Siwa went on to list existing songs that, according to her, are already examples of gay pop, including “Applause” by Lady Gaga and “Can’t Be Tamed” by Miley Cyrus. (She adds her own new song, “Karma,” as an example too.)

“I am so excited to bring this version of pop music back,” Siwa said.


“I am so excited to bring this version of pop music back.” 💥 To celebrate the release of “Karma,” @JoJo Siwa joins #BillboardNews to discuss her new era and drastic rebrand, creating the new “gay pop” genre, her love of #MileyCyrus & #BillieEilish and more. Watch the full sit-down interview at #karma #jojosiwa #interview #popmusic

♬ original sound – billboard

To give Siwa the benefit of the doubt, is it possible she’s simply never heard of the plethora of queer pop artists working today, let alone all those who paved the way for today’s gay artists? 

Unfortunately, there’s photographic evidence that that isn’t the case. Siwa has met sapphic pop icons like Chappell Roan, Fletcher, and Haley Kiyoko — in fact, she met them all at the same time, as a widely circulated photo proves. As one user commented, “If this pic didn’t exist I’d fully be under the impression that JoJo Siwa had never met another gay person.”

Those three, of course, only scratch the surface of queer superstars making music these days. There’s also Reneé Rapp, boygenius, MUNA, girl in red, Lil Nas X, King Princess, Troye Sivan — there are literally too many to name, making Siwa’s statement all the more bizarre. 

Queer folks across the internet are well aware of this and are jumping at the chance to school Siwa on queer music history. From a slideshow of queer artists past and present to suggestions of where she should start on her queer listening journey, there’s no shortage of advice (or disdain) for her.

“Genuinely, that is so disrespectful,” one TikToker said of Siwa’s comment. “To come on here and say that you created gay pop music and blatantly disregard all the people that came before you is insane.”


#stitch with @billboard sorry but this pissed me off 🫠🫡 #jojosiwa #gay #popmusic #lgbt #wlw #karma

♬ original sound – Jenna

One iconic lesbian pop duo, Tegan and Sara, even responded to Siwa’s claim of inventing gay pop directly. That side-eye says it all.


#stitch with @billboard These gay popstars love Jojo.

♬ original sound – Tegan and Sara

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