📍 South-West, UK
Celebrating Pride month, we caught up with a series of artists on what’s happening in and around their local scenes where music and LGBTQ+ communities collide. 🏳️🌈
Next up, we go behind-the-scenes with Grove and Diessa, the duo behind BAAST based out of the South-West, UK. We talk about the power of radio, starting their new Queer & Questioning show and getting involved with Nottingham’s much-loved Queer Noise Club.
Tell us about how music and the LGBTQ community come together in your city?
In our hometowns in the South-West there’s a total disconnect between the music and LGBTQ scene, which meant that in our earlier years we both felt disillusioned with how our music and our queerness go together. When BAAST first formed, we were making weird noisy angsty stuff about identity. It didn’t feel like there was really a space for it to reside in our local area so we started looking further afield.
Diessa moved to Sheffield last year and has gotten involved with the LGBTQ music scene around the North and Midlands. It’s growing and really flourishing right now with some amazing artists and DIY nights popping up (big ups Queer Noise Club!).
Grove has been between London and Bristol going to a wealth of similarly dutty underground QPOC events, enjoying the freedom within these spaces and feeling constantly inspired. We’re now bringing all that inspiration into our upcoming EP <3
Tell us about your Queer & Questioning radio show and other projects.
The show is the culmination of us both feeling much more comfortable in our queerness. Having explored more and more LGBTQ music-makers we thought it’d be amazing to showcase dope music for everyone, specifically fellow LGBTQ folk to enjoy. We wanted it to be relatable in some sense. Talking about our own experiences is hopefully of some interest too.
Grove: I know my Dad has actually learned a load about queerness as a result so far hahahah. And I know I definitely wanted to hear something like it growing up, so there’s the element of being the change you want to see.
Diessa: For sure Queer & Questioning has been a great way to “come out” more publicly and embrace the bold ‘n brash sides of queer identity on my own terms 🙂
As well as Q&Q, Grove co-founded a LGBTQ collective in their hometown of Cheltenham which aims to bring together the queer creative scene, musicians, artists, poets, photographers and as many lil queers we can muster to form a counter-culture to the largely cis-het patriarchal structure of what is currently going on. There’s a load of shitty abusers in the scene that are getting away with their actions and actively thriving so counteracting that is a total necessity and statement.
Diessa has been super involved in the organisation of Queer Noise Club in Nottingham, soon also starting up in Sheffield, bringing hedonistic cathartic noise to the north! Shared cultural spaces are so important for safe healing, exploration, growth and escapism from the outside world.
Thinking about the global LGBTQ scene, how does what you’re doing on a local level feed into what’s going on around the world right now?
I guess all change in the global LGBTQ scene starts at grassroots and we think the fact we’re being loud and outspoken in our queerness it has a knock-on effect in someone else feeling empowered by that, the same way we have been empowered in the past year or two by other creators, friends and partners. <3
We want it to be known that we don’t tolerate abusers or people who associate with them. People who think they’re safe in their pack of fellow abusers/enablers and will all succeed together despite their awful actions will be held accountable. It’s heartbreaking that a significant number of people we know in the LGBTQ community & beyond have been affected by shitty people.
That aside, we honestly just love a good dutty party with duttier tunes, love being around people who’re open and respectful and considerate and love feeling at home for the time our weird little community comes together.
100% queer culture is about genuine people and genuine counter-culture, not corporate pride or pink capitalism. We are proud anti-capitalists and think that the only true form of emancipation for queer people globally is in a post-capitalist world 🙂