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Jennifer Nettles Discusses Her Connection With the LGBT Community

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(Courtesy: Mercury Records)

(Courtesy: Mercury Records)

By Annie Reuter

In an interview with PrideSourcea Michigan-based publication that serves the state’s LGBT community–Jennifer Nettles opened up about lesbian rumors, being her authentic self and why she thinks the gay community has been so accepting of her music.

“I’ve really found that everybody just wants to be authentic,” she said. “That’s all I’ve ever wanted to do, and so what if I have a short haircut and someone assumes something one way or another. It doesn’t bother me. I don’t care.”

Related: Jennifer Nettles Says Sugarland Future Is Secure, Nobody Panic

She continued, “A lot of times we’re just trying to relate to each other and trying to figure out where we fit in. So if I have a short haircut and that makes me gay or straight or whatever to someone else, I don’t care.”

Nettles said she has always been grateful for Sugarland’s gay fanbase, but isn’t quite sure how it began.

“I don’t know if it was because I went to a women’s college,” she explained. “Again, I think there was a whole slew of different influences pieced together that allowed for my support within the gay community – but I like to think that it’s just because it’s good music, and everybody likes good music.”

Related: With ‘That Girl,’ Jennifer Nettles Offers Up a Response to Dolly Parton’s ‘Jolene’

For Nettles, authenticity is key, both to herself as an artist and to her fans, which is what she has tried to do with her music over the years.

“Within the gay community, the courage it takes to be one’s authentic self – even if you’re viewed as different – is inspiring,” she said. “Consequently there is definitely a connection in that degree of authenticity – and doing it because you gotta be who you are – that connects my music with the gay community.”

She also talked about feeling like an outsider, saying, “I’ll be honest, I don’t know if I’m comfortable with the discomfort and prefer to be there or if that’s just how I relate, but I end up in that role so much. I’ve always sort of been that way – an outside floater.”

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