Drag queen and environmentalist Pattie Gonia dropped a new queer anthem — and we’re all crying

Pattie Gonia sings in her new music video, dressed in a gold, feathery outfit in the woods

Beloved drag queen, environmental justice advocate, and artist Pattie Gonia has released a new song that builds on the work she has done for years: honoring the LGBTQ+ community and its relationship to the planet.

The song, “Made It Through The Night,” and its accompanying music video, act as an anthem for the queer community. The hero image is Pattie (whose off-stage name is Wyn Wiley) dressed as a bird, which ties in elegantly with the message of the track.

“Scientists agree: Birds sing to each other in the morning to tell each other that they made it through the night,” Pattie begins the video. “I think that queer people do the same.”

She continues: “Pride is our bird song. We are here. We made it through our night.” 

Her classic red wig is adorned with metallic gold and red feathers, which match with a pair of earrings and fall down the length of the drag queen’s neck, resembling the plumage of a colorful bird.

A bird with a meaningful song to sing.

From there, a piano melody kicks off the song, with images of both Wiley presenting as Pattie Gonia, and as himself. Other clips include historic footage of Pride events, and — of course — birds, and other elements of natural beauty.

“I can’t explain it but I wouldn’t change it / We sing cause we made it / We made it through the night / No one can erase us / We’re here and we’re staying / We sing cause we made it / We made it through the night,” the chorus of the song refrains, with trilling strings and an accelerating beat.

The song — which was produced by Grammy-award winning producer Tyler Chester, and features performances by violinist Paul Cartwright and drummer Amy Wood — is especially poignant this week.

The release of “Made It Through The Night” comes a mere days after the death of Nex Benedict, a non-binary teenager in Oklahoma who was brutally beaten in a school bathroom and died the following morning.

In an Instagram post paying tribute to Benedict, Pattie Gonia wrote “our existence is resistance.”

Pattie Gonia’s work to create safe, joyful spaces for the LGBTQ+ community in the outdoors has been in progress for years, including drag shows that highlight the urgency of climate change, Pride gatherings in national parks, and other musical works — like a recent project with Yo-Yo Ma and Quinn Chistopherson.

The drag queen was also recently named one of National Geographic’s 2024 Travelers of the Year.

Beyond a hike in Yosemite, or an upbeat drag show, Wiley’s new song provides another important avenue for members of the LGBTQ+ community to rally together. 

“It’s 1:45AM and bawling my eyes out tears of joy as a black queer environmentalist,” a viewer wrote in the comment section of the music video.

“You, my darling, Pattie Gonia, are something special,” another shared. “Thank you for sharing this beautiful message and art with us, your queer siblings!” 

“I’ve been listening to this song on repeat and it makes me cry every time,” another commenter added. “I love feeling the strength of our community through this song.”

Header image courtesy of Pattie Gonia/Wondercamp

Article Details

February 22, 2024 12:43 PM
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