- GLAAD and Sony Music Group Announce “ICONS,” a Three-Part Interview Series Featuring Rising LGBTQ Musicians and Songwriters
- Mar 06, 2023
Isaac Dunbar, INIKO, and MK xyz will be this year’s featured artists in second installment of the series
New York, NY (03/06/2023)—GLAAD, the world’s largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) media advocacy organization and Sony Music Group (SMG) today announced “ICONS,” an uplifting and intimate three-part episodic video series designed to advance LGBTQ inclusion in music and amplify LGBTQ voices in the industry. Isaac Dunbar, INIKO, and MK xyz will be this year’s featured artists in the series.
Building on the two companies’ ongoing partnership, “ICONS” will bring together LGBTQ musicians, songwriters, and producers across generations for culture-driving conversations about the history of LGBTQ inclusion in music and the future of the industry. Artists will discuss the personal connection that exists between queerness and craft, how LGBTQ artists have shaped music, where we are today, and what it takes to break through as a queer music artist.
“ICONS” debuts on GLAAD’s YouTube Friday, March 10, featuring these rising LGBTQ icons in the music industry:
Isaac Dunbar (He/Him), premiering Friday, March 10
Isaac Dunbar is a songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, and producer based in New York. Isaac’s keen emotional intuition and artistic acuity belie his age, and at just 19 years old, he has asserted himself as the rare talent who gleefully defies genres, rules, and eras all at once and has received recognition from various media outlets such as TIME, Billboard, and The FADER. He has released several projects, including the 2022 Banish The Banshee EP via RCA Records, which explores themes of self-love and healing. Inspired by musicians such as Lady Gaga and David Bowie, Isaac uses his music to inspire others to be themselves. He is nominated for the 34th Annual GLAAD Media Awards for Outstanding Breakthrough Music Artist.
INIKO (They/Them), premiering Friday, April 14
Iniko is a singer, multi-instrumentalist, and songwriter from Brooklyn, New York. Known for their cosmic music and unique style, Iniko makes music for soul searchers. By fusing sinewy vocals, the musicality of a poly instrumentalist, and their adventurous imagination, their music tackles themes of anxiety, damaged romance, and philosophy with warmth and whimsy. Their song “The King’s Affirmation” went viral on TikTok and represented their growth as an artist. Iniko identifies as nonbinary and wants to use their music to stand up for their peers in the queer community. They are currently working on a new project that reflects both their journey and experiences with others. Iniko has 2 million TikTok followers and is signed to Columbia Records.
MK xyz (She/Her/They), premiering Friday, May 12
The 25-year-old triple-threat R&B artist from Jacksonville, Florida, is known for her unique expression of individuality and refusal to be labeled. Born to dancer parents, she has been performing since age three and drew inspiration from famous entertainers such as Chris Brown, Ciara, Aaliyah, Toni Braxton, Sade, and Michael Jackson. Dubbed by Wonderland as a rising R&B star “for her fierce lyricism and captivating dancing ability,” MK xyz is undoubtedly an artist to watch. After releasing her debut single “Pass It” featuring G-Eazy, MK xyz has received critical acclaim from outlets such as Wonderland, Flaunt, Bustle, Lyrical Lemonade and more. MK xyz is signed to EPIC Records.
GLAAD and Sony Music Group’s partnership was announced last year, and “ICONS” is one of several initiatives aiming to further Sony Music Group’s diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts and redouble the company’s commitment to inclusiveness.
“The impact of queer artists across history and their influence to shape the landscape of music and the industry at large is undeniable. It’s as important to honor the trailblazing legacies of LGBTQ icons in music, as it is equally imperative that we elevate new voices in music who have unique backgrounds and stories to tell,” said Tony Morrison, Senior Director of Communications at GLAAD.“‘ICONS’ establishes this path forward to increase the visibility of queer artists, and Sony Music Group continues to be a valuable partner to help lead the way for diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging throughout the music industry.”
“We’re thrilled to announce the continuation of our partnership with GLAAD through the launch of “ICONS.” This interview series will be a powerful platform for raising awareness and inclusion of LGBTQ artists and songwriters and their contributions to music,” said Tiffany R. Warren, Executive Vice President, Chief Diversity, and Inclusion Officer at Sony Music Group. “We believe that by exploring the impact that LGBTQ artists and songwriters have had on music, we can foster a deeper understanding of what it takes to break through as an LGBTQ artist. “This series is a testament to our commitment to advancing diversity, equity, and inclusion while breaking barriers in the music industry. We’re excited to bring this series to the world.”