Out singer/songwriter Jordy is on a career high. After gaining national attention via appearances on The Today Show and Good Morning America—as well as becoming a TikTok sensation, playing a series of music festivals, and releasing his debut album in 2021—Jordy’s back with his sophomore full-length Boy (300 Elektra Entertainment). Just in time for summer (and Pride), Jordy’s brand of honest and uplifting queer pop is just what we need at this difficult time for the LGBTQ community.
Jordy made time to speak with OutSmart ahead of his Pride Month appearance in Houston at Rainbow on the Green at downtown’s Discovery Green.
Gregg Shapiro: Jordy, the last time we spoke in April 2021, some incredible career events had just occurred for you. You signed with 300 Entertainment (now 300 Elektra Entertainment), you performed on The Today Show, and your song “Long Distance” had become a breakout hit. When you look back on that time, what stands out the most to you?
Jordy: It was such a crazy time for me. I had been putting out music for years, but all of a sudden, things were happening so incredibly quickly. I think it was a good reminder from the universe that I was doing all the right things—writing music that was honest and authentic to me and sharing it with the world. I’m so grateful for that time in my life. It was such a stepping stone.
Two years later, do you feel like you’ve had the chance to fully absorb the events of the recent past?
I try every day to live as presently as possible. I think it’s so easy to forget to celebrate the victories along the way because we, as artists, are always thinking about what’s coming next. But when I think about what I’ve accomplished over the years, it makes me emotional. I’m doing what I’ve always dreamed of doing, and there’s not a day that goes by when I don’t think about how grateful I am for that.
You went to college in Boston, as I did (at Emerson College), and I was wondering if you were able to take advantage of the city’s renowned music scene while you lived there.
I was an a cappella boy! [Laughs] At BU, I was a member of the “treblemakers” and I truly have the fondest memories. I learned how to perform, how to sing in more of a pop lane after being classically trained in high school, and I made friends that will be my friends forever. Eventually, I started writing a bit and gigged around Boston and Cambridge, which was also really fun for me. I wanted to establish myself as a solo artist, and that was really the beginning of it all. I love that city so much.
Me, too! This interview is taking place while you’re in Europe, where last night you performed at the Night & Day Café in Manchester, England.
It’s all just so crazy. Playing Birmingham and London already, it’s been insane to see the turnout and the people screaming the lyrics back at me. I get so stuck in my bubble of LA that I forget the music is being listened to by people all over the world. It’s so cool, and also fun to hear people singing my songs with a different accent! [Laughs] I cannot wait to come back.
Your new album, Boy, was released a few weeks ago. What was the best part of the experience of making Boy for you?
Honestly, working with my best friends. I feel so lucky to work with stupidly talented people, but even luckier that they are the people I love the absolute most—some who have been with me since my very first single. It’s so special. It was also a very cathartic experience writing about my life over the past couple of years. Growing up is so hard, and being able to write about that in the music was so therapeutic. I am immensely proud of the project, and so happy it’s out for people to enjoy.
At a time when the subject of mental health is a large part of the national conversation, some of the songs on Boy, including “Good Not Great,” “Boy (Intro),” “Hypothetical Party,” “Dry Spell,” “Love You and Let You Go,” sound like you’re being honest about your own struggles. What do you hope to achieve by sharing songs such as these?
I think when I was young, I just wanted to feel heard and seen. I was closeted and insecure and so emotional in a time when it wasn’t “cool” for boys to express that. When I write music, I want my listeners to feel seen in a way I wasn’t. All those songs express very true parts of myself, and I wanted to be as vulnerable as possible so that my fans felt less alone after listening to the record. We’re all human, and we deserve to experience art that honestly represents our journeys.
“Story of a Boy” includes your queer interpolation of Nine Days’ “Story of a Girl,” but the song is taking on added meaning as it has become a kind of anthem for the trans community. What does that mean to you?
It’s been such a humbling and emotional experience for me. The trans community is under attack right now. They need their voices lifted. They need protection. So, for this trend to happen organically during this time is incredibly powerful. At first, I thought it was cool that I was taking the original song and making it my own, which is the gay experience, but now it’s taken on a whole other meaning. Meeting trans fans at shows and hearing how much the song means to them is why I do what I do. Tell your trans friends you love them. They need it.
“luv u, bye” is a hot dance track that sounds like it could be a hit at tea dances. How would you feel if the song was embraced by DJs and became a club hit?
I would love that! Let’s make it happen! [Laughs]
You’re playing some upcoming Pride festivals, including ones in West Hollywood, Houston, and Chicago. As a native of the Chicago area, what does it mean to you to be performing for your hometown crowd?
Every time I get a chance to perform in Chicago, it warms my entire heart. That city is my home and my heart. And to be representing my city and the queer community all at the same time is truly a dream come true. Pride can’t come soon enough!
When you perform in a state such as Texas, where the LGBTQ community is under threat, do you feel a responsibility to use your platform as an artist to speak out against injustice?
Absolutely. Every show in those states is an act of protest. I will sing every song proudly and speak on behalf of my community without fear. We need to be loud. We need to speak up. And I am honored to do that for my community. It’s my duty as an artist.
What: Rainbow on the Green outdoor concert with JORDY and Z’maji
When: June 23, 7:00–10:00 p.m.
Where: Discovery Green, 1500 McKinney St.