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    HomeNewsCity of West Hollywood Presents Sophie B. Hawkins Live at 'Free Myself:...

    City of West Hollywood Presents Sophie B. Hawkins Live at ‘Free Myself: A Conversation and Concert’

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    The City of West Hollywood will close-out Pride Month events with Free Myself: A Conversation and Concert with Grammy-nominated singer/songwriter Sophie B. Hawkins. Hawkins is a 2021 recipient of a City of West Hollywood Rainbow Key Award.

    This first-ever combined Lesbian Speakers Series and Summer Sounds event is free and will take place on Sunday, June 25, 2023 beginning at 4 p.m. at Plummer Park, located at 7377 Santa Monica Boulevard. Seating is not provided; picnic blankets, low chairs, and picnic snacks are encouraged. RSVP is requested via Eventbrite at https://summersoundsweho-2023jun25.eventbrite.com.

    At 4 p.m., the Lesbian Speakers Series conversation will focus on the topic of visibility for lesbian/queer women in the music industry with insights and stories from Sophie B. Hawkins’ more than three-decade-long career. Free Myself is the title of her sixth studio album, which was released in Spring 2023 to rave reviews.

    At 5 p.m. Hawkins and her band will perform her greatest hits and some brand-new favorites to launch the 2023 Summer Sounds Free Outdoor Concert Series.

    Sophie B. Hawkins’ acclaimed 1992 debut album Tongues and Tails achieved massive global success and earned her a Grammy nomination for Best New Artist, vaulting Hawkins into the limelight and revealing her as a cultural luminary way ahead of her time. Hawkins broke new ground when she used a female pronoun in a romantic context in her iconic 1992 hit song, Damn, I Wish I Was Your Lover (“…I sat on a mountainside with peace of mind, And I lay by the ocean making love to her with visions clear…”), the first time a same-sex pronoun was used in a mainstream major record label release. She also challenged the norms of gender expression and sexual orientation at a time when political, social, and sexual labels were more rigid. When asked by a New York Times reporter in 1992 if she was gay, she answered, “omnisexual,” which under the culture and politics of the time could have effectively ended her career before it even began. She defied categorization and embraced her individuality by embodying a daring fluidity as a musician, working with some of the most creative musicians of the era on her debut album. Hawkins’ first record label showcase concert was held at The Roxy in West Hollywood.

    Hawkins’ ever-evolving career has included releasing six widely beloved albums, breaking chart records with her smash hit As I Lay Me Down (which held the record as the longest-running single on the Billboard Adult Contemporary chart), four worldwide hit singles from her second album, Whaler, songs in cultural touchstone TV shows and films (from recent hits Stranger Things, Euphoria, Ozark, and PEN15, to landmark series Beverly Hills, 90210, Dawson’s Creek, Community, The L Word and more), and she played the lead role starring as Janis Joplin in the critically-acclaimed musical Room 105, which made its stage debut at Macha Theatre on Kings Road in West Hollywood in 2012 and the show was extended multiple times before touring nationally. Hawkins is a long-time supporter of animal rights and environmental causes, as well as a social and political activist, supporting events promoting women in music and LGBTQ equality.

    The City of West Hollywood’s Lesbian Speakers Series began in the fall of 2015 and is an ongoing series of free talks, performances, film screenings, and readings featuring phenomenal lesbians and queer women. The City of West Hollywood’s Summer Sounds Free Outdoor Concert Series is organized by the City of West Hollywood’s Arts Division. Information about the remainder of the 2023 season can be found on the Summer Sounds web page.

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