North Texas Daily

Indie pop artist BB Bean uses lyrical storytelling to share queer experience

Indie pop artist BB Bean uses lyrical storytelling to share queer experience

Indie pop artist BB Bean uses lyrical storytelling to share queer experience
April 06
14:21 2022

BB Bean, known as Bean Lyons off the stage, is a singer-songwriter and media arts freshman who covers everything from self-acceptance and lesbian stereotypes to Bianca Stratford from “10 Things I Hate About You.”

Their versatility is part of the reason their fans love them.

“I’ve been super invested in BB Bean’s music and have loved to see the growth of their musical career,” environmental science freshman Julia Hamm said. “I loved their song ‘Two Best Friends’ and am super excited to hear what they release next.”

In addition to being their newest song, “Two Best Friends” was Lyon’s first song to be played on the radio. As they were finishing the song, Lyons found a submission form on alternative music station KXT 91.7 to play new songs. The station got back to them and asked if Bean’s song could premiere on the station.

When the song was played, Lyons was in the Willis Library listening on one of the computers. Lyons said they were excited, but in disbelief.

“It was bizarre hearing my song in that context,” Lyons said.

“Two Best Friends” is about two friends who are so close they are almost like lovers. There is an unspoken tension between them, a sort of love that goes beyond platonic. Lyons said the song draws on a common struggle that is especially part of queer experience.

As a Black, nonbinary lesbian, Lyons said they are aware their own experience is not very represented in the music industry. Because of this, Lyons said said their biggest motivation is the idea of their music reaching people like them. While they are intentional in reaching the various communities they belong to, having to speak for all of the communities at once is overwhelming at times, Lyons said.

“A lot of people were talking about how they were happy, finally, to have sapphic music that wasn’t written by a white woman,” Lyons said. “My reaction is, ‘Oh gosh, I don’t know if I want all this pressure on myself.'”

For Lyons, the easiest way to make sure they do not feel too pressured is to focus on telling their experience. Their songs are informed by their own experience, but Lyons said they twist it into a slightly different story, as storytelling is what got them into music.

For as long as they can remember, Lyons has been writing poems and stories. Around the age of 12, Lyons got a ukulele and began making music. Later, they started to learn how to play the keyboard by ear and by 16 they started to upload music onto YouTube.

Inspired by artists such as mxmtoon and Conan Gray, Lyons said they knew they wanted to be an independent artists. Like other independent artists, Lyons writes and records their own music. They said the process of recording can take any time from two to six months. Lyons began producing thei music and around October 2020, they launched their Spotify account.

The care Lyons puts into their music does not go unnoticed, said business freshman Logan King.

“BB Bean’s music is not only extremely well produced, but also lyrically solid,” King said. “It is clear how much love and intention is poured into each song they write.”

In the future, Lyons is planning on assembling a band so they can play their songs live. They also currently have an EP in the works.

Featured Image: Bean Lyons poses in front of the Hurley Administration Building on March 29, 2022. Photo by Ileana Serrano

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Susan Moore

Susan Moore

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