Pride Month is officially here, and to celebrate, Billboard Latin has compiled a list of 11 LGBTQ Latin artists we’re currently obsessed with. But before we introduce the 2023 Latin Pride list, let’s trace back to some of the artists who had long kept their sexual identities a secret and became a new beacon of hope for the new generation of artists.
Most notably, Puerto Rican superstar Ricky Martin became one of the first mainstream Latin stars to come out in 2010. “I am very proud to say that I am a fortunate homosexual man,” he expressed in an open letter that he wrote on his website.
A couple of years prior, RBD member Christian Chávez used the group’s website to express that he “was not prepared to speak in fear of rejection, of criticism, but especially for my family and its consequences,” but that it was “time to grow up, not only as a human being but also as an artist.” In the lengthy letter, he asked his fans to not judge him for his honesty and to feel proud of who they are.
In addition to Martin and Chávez’s act of bravery, other Latin stars used social media to share their personal stories. Fifth Harmony alum Lauren Jauregui, for example, penned an open letter on Billboard during the 2016 presidential election, where she talked about her sexuality: “I am a bisexual Cuban-American woman and I am so proud of it. I am proud to be part of a community that only projects love and education and the support of one another.”
Earlier that year, Latin pop crooner Kany García revealed that she was in a relationship with another woman on Instagram, while acts such as Raymix and Pablo Alboran opened up as well during the 2020 global pandemic.
“It’s like if I had taken a ton off my shoulders,” the former said during the Coming Out Latin panel at the 2021 Billboard Latin Music Week. “I can now sing how I really feel and change the lyrics to make my love interest male instead of female. Also, I’m not the only one on the planet that’s living this and that’s the beautiful part about this all. If I was able to do it, you can too. Be free and enjoy life because we’re not here forever.”
Below, check out a new generation of LGBTQ stars:
An LGBTQ icon, the Brazilian superstar has openly discussed her bisexual identity. “I kissed a girl before I kissed a guy,” the “Envolver” singer said during an interview with the Los Angeles Times. “I only told my mom after I kissed a guy, because … I didn’t know how to feel. I thought there was something wrong with me for wanting to kiss a guy and a girl. But my mom just said, ’So what?’” Up next for Anitta: she’s set to drop a “lusty duet” with Sam Smith. Read more about the upcoming collab here.
Recommended Song: “Me Gusta” ft. Cardi B & Myke Towers
Jhonny joined Grupo Firme — led by his younger brother Eduin Caz — in 2019 as one of the band’s vocalists. Since he’s marked a before and after for regional Mexican music. The band created a safe space for the LGBTQ+ community within a realm of Latin music that hasn’t always felt welcoming to it. Jhonny is openly gay and proposed to his boyfriend onstage at one of the band’s concerts in 2021. “You can go to one of our concerts and see rainbow flags, trans flags — something you’ve never seen at any other regional Mexican concert,” Caz previously told Billboard. “It’s a message to the industry that no matter how you want to live your life and how you express yourself, we all enjoy music the same way.”
Recommended Song: “Enloquéceme”
Born in Sonora, Mexico, Michelle Maciel describes himself on social media as a “Pisces, musician, and student.” On his Spotify profile, he simply states “Break my heart for art,” which is very reflective of the type of music he sings about—love, infatuation, and heartbreak. His suave, bad-boy look and dulcet vocals back up edgy fusions of indie pop, urban ballads, and Regional Mexican music, as heard in viral singles such as “eScoRpión :)” with newcomer Ramon Vega, and his two Eden Muñóz collaborations: “No Sabia Cuanto” and “CCC.” With over one million followers, Maciel has gained a solid fanbase on TikTok thanks to his video reactions, dance trends, and overall engaging content for today’s youth.
Recommended Song: “CCC” featuring Eden Muñoz
In 2021, Peruvian singer-songwriter Nicole Zignago shared a set of photos on Instagram with her girlfriend, Mexican athlete, and photographer Fernanda Piña. “How important is love in all its forms? How important is it to recognize yourself with who you have next to you? How important is it to be honest? How important it is to let yourself be. You are my destiny and constant reflection! Loving is fine. With you everything is fine,” she captioned the heartfelt post.
Recommended Song: “coRaZÓn fRíO” feat. Sofia Reyes
This Mexican-American singer-songwriter has never hidden who he is. The R&B artist — who was up for best new artist at the Grammy Awards this year — has also been very clear about what he’s into. See his response to a tweet that accused him of “queerbaiting.” Last year, the Indiana-born singer delivered Ivory, a very personal set that showcased Apollo’s strength in his vulnerability. It was named by Billboard as one of the best Pride Albums of 2022.
Recommended Song: “En El Olvido”
Spanish crooner Alborán is known for his timeless ballads such as “Prometo” and “Saturno” powered by his sweet and tender vocals. The Grammy-nominated artist came out in 2020 during a three-minute video he posted on social media. “Today, I want my voice to be louder and for it to have more value and weight,” he said in the clip. “I’m here to tell you that I am homosexual and it’s okay. Life goes on, and everything will remain the same, but I’m going to be a little happier than I already am.”
Recommended Song: “Si Hubieras Querido”
Born in Las Palmas Canary Islands in Spain, Ptazeta (real name: Zuleima del Pino Gonzalez) stepped into the Latin music world with her trap, reggaeton, and dembow fusions but also her queer and open-minded lyrics. “I want to normalize a woman singing to another woman and what that means to the community,” she previously told Billboard. Ptazeta has collaborated with artists such as Nicki Nicole, Farina, and Bizarrap, to name a few. Last year, she signed a record deal with Interscope Records.
Recommended Song: “Trakatá” feat. Farina
In 2020, Mexican electrocumbia singer announced he was gay in a nearly 5-minute video he posted on YouTube. “Officially announcing I’m gay” he captioned the clip with a smiley face at the end. “Everything seems fine,” Raymix then told Billboard. “Nothing has changed. I’m still me. Only I’m now a gay man.” Subsequently, Raymix — known for his cumbia anthem “Oye Mujer” — delivered the song “Llámame,” with a music video that, for the first time, featured a man as the artist’s love interest.
Recommended Song: “Llámame”
Snow Tha Product
Deriving from the underground hip-hop scene in San Jose, Calif., Snow Tha Product (real name: Claudia Feliciano) admits that being a gay Latin female recording artist is not always easy but through her art she can express herself freely. “I can speak about certain things even though I’m still not very forward,” she told Billboard. “I say things with a lot of double meanings but I feel like being able to talk about girls in my songs, at least people can understand me more now.” She also advises those who are unsure about coming out that “being honest definitely helps your art.”
Recommended Song: “Piña” feat. Lauren Jauregui
A force to be reckoned with, Puerto Rican artist Villano Antillano broke out in 2018 carving a lane for herself in a male-dominated genre as she normalized a queer perspective. A leading voice in the Latin queer and trans artists movement, Villano previously told Billboard, that there’s still work to do to create respect for queer artists in Latin music. “I have helped make queer musicians and artists more visible perhaps; but tolerance, respect and equality are not things we have at the moment. That’s just the truth,” she said bluntly.
Recommended Song: “BZRP Music Sessions #51”
Hailing from Añasco, Puerto Rico, Young Miko was discovered by Latin hitmaker Caleb Calloway, who produced her debut single “105 Freestyle” in 2021. Since, top-tier acts such as Yandel, Feid, and Arcángel, have reeled her in for collaborations, primarily thanks to her effortless ability to tackle sultry-yet-fierce rap bars as well as belt a sugary chanteo. In addition, the Boricua rapper has received the stamp of approval from big acts like Bad Bunny and Karol G. The former invited her to perform on stage during his packed Un Verano Sin Ti concert at the Coliseo de Puerto Rico José Miguel Agrelot. The latter invited Miko to take a shot together during her Calibash set in Los Angeles.
Recommended Song: “Lisa”