Windy City Media Group Frontpage News

THE VOICE OF CHICAGO'S GAY, LESBIAN, BI, TRANS AND QUEER COMMUNITY SINCE 1985

home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor
Donate

Sponsor
Sponsor

  WINDY CITY TIMES

Musician/ex-pro athlete Sami Grisafe talks Etheridge, Trump, Clinton
by Sarah Toce
2016-09-21

This article shared 1029 times since Wed Sep 21, 2016
facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email


Lesbian former professional athlete Sami Grisafe is aware of the fact that she sounds like another familiar voice when she sings—and she's fine with it.

"I am honored to be compared to Melissa Etheridge," Grisafe said. "She has such a strong voice, both as a singer and songwriter. I am inspired by her choice to use her platform to bring people together and create change for the better. Whether it be 'I Need To Wake Up' or 'I Run For Life' or her latest song inspired by the recent tragedy in Orlando, 'Pulse,' she creates music that shines a light on issues we can no longer ignore. I hope to have the same impact with my voice."

Grisafe not only hopes to have a similar impact as Etheridge—she already does. Her single "All-Un-American" has surprised all expectations, hitting the 50,000-view mark on Facebook and continuing to rise.

"I wrote 'All-Un-American' as a love song to the United States of America. Yes, I knock a certain somebody in the song, but that's because I believe his campaign is threatening the very things that make this country great," she said. "Yes, we have an unsavory history, as many nations do, but what we stand for, what we strive for, the words that we have chiseled in monuments and woven into our fabric are our moral compass. We should be working to get closer to achieving these proclamations, not recklessly abandoning them."

The songs asks a simple question: "Who do we want to be as Americans?"

"The song resonates with me, because America has lived up to being the land of opportunity for me. As a woman, I was given the opportunity, because of Title IX, to play football in high school which would later lead to playing for my country," Grisafe said. "As a lesbian, I have the freedom to marry, just as my straight friends do. As an artist, I have the freedom to write songs like this and not be persecuted. I love this country and I would rather fight for our potential, than cower to fear-mongering divisiveness."

Not to name names, but it's apparent who she's talking about throughout the song. Even so, she has fighting words for one Mr. Donald J. Trump—as any former pro athlete might.

"I don't hate you and I'm not delusional to think that I am in a place to give anyone political advice," she shared. "For me, it all boils down to this: 'What message will we send to young people in our country about what it means to be a leader?' We need to take a hard look at what we want to role model for our children. This is not a reality show. This is our future."

Speaking of the future, Grisafe works tirelessly to sculpt her own.

"Music helps me find clarity and peace," she said. "Anytime I am faced with something difficult in my life, I know it is just a song away from being understood. Sometimes it's through the process of writing a song that I can understand an obstacle, and sometimes someone else's song enlightens me. Either way, music clears my mind and fills my heart."

The former footballer broke the glass ceiling in her own life as a young adult.

"Football is a microcosm of life. You have big and small goals," she shared. "You put together a plan to achieve those goals. You have to work with people to execute your plan. Sometimes everything goes your way, sometimes it doesn't. Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose. I have never met an obstacle in life that I couldn't solve from my experience playing football. We're all trying to win at life, but like football, when it's all over and the clock reads zeros, all that matters is that you prepared to the best of your ability, gave it your maximum effort, learned from your mistakes, embraced your teammates and respected your opponents."

Football taught her many lessons, including: "One, think bigger than yourself. Two, hard work pays off. Three, fight for your dreams like you're inches away from them, because you just might be."

Grisafe's upcoming passages have roots in a list she builds on every single day.

"Every time I scratch something off of my to-do list it feels like five more things have been added in its place," she said. "I want to connect with millions of people all over the world through music, write books, act in thought-provoking films, produce documentaries that tell inspiring stories, mentor young people, help create a world that is more aware, proactive, and kind. I have many more goals, but that should keep me pretty busy for a while."

Well, that and re-inventing the internet with her music.

"It's hard to anticipate any kind of traction on the internet," she said. "You never know what will 'hit' and what won't. At the same time, I had confidence in the talent of the musicians, the producers involved and the quality of production, both the song and video. Working with producers Colin Wolfe ( Dr. Dre, Michael Jackson, Madonna ) and Evan Ryan as well as the incredibly talented musicians ( Evan Ryan, Keaton Simons, Edouard Korvin ) and videographer, Zach Ginnever, was a powerful experience."

The video for "All-Un-American" itself made for quite the entrance.

"The music video features archival footage of the Rosa Parks and the fall of the Berlin wall as well as recent events including a Black Lives Matter march and Chicago's 2016 Pride Parade with pictures of those murdered at the Pulse Club in Orlando. I knew that we had a strong song musically as well as a provocative message within the lyrics and visually through the music video."

Mission accomplished.

And her message to the countless families left behind following the Orlando Pulse nightclub attack?

"We've never met, but I know you. You are my parents, my brother, my grandparents, my girlfriend," she said. "You are the people in my life I love with all my heart. Your tragedy is our tragedy. Our tragedy as a community, our tragedy as a nation, our tragedy as the human race. May we all learn from your strength and love. May we remember your loved ones for the beautiful people they were, not as nameless victims."

Make no mistake about it, Grisafe will be voting for Hillary Clinton in the 2016 General Election.

"I am pro-Hillary," she shared. "Full-disclosure: I was a Bernie supporter at the beginning of this election. I was inspired by his dedication to the people and his unwavering tenacity to stand up for the hardworking American. I don't believe his campaign ended in vain because Bernie's ideas are now influencing some of Hillary's plans. Hillary Clinton has made mistakes in her career, but so has every person who has been put in a position to make difficult decisions. It's easy to stand back and criticize someone's work in the comfort of our ignorance, righteously in hindsight. None of us know what she knew: the pressure, the consequences, the options she had in the heat of the moment."

Then, she came up with an analogy only Grisafe could pull off.

"I liken it to the Monday morning quarterback, which pales in comparison to running a country, but a subject I feel comfortable with none-the-less. Every quarterback is criticized about decisions they make in a game. 'Clearly, that receiver was open, why didn't you throw it to them?!' The fact of the matter is every leader wants to do a good job. They want to win the game. But there is so much more happening during in the moment than the bystander knows. There are personal dynamics, history, stat quotas, and the ever-ticking clock. The point is, if we are going to have someone lead our country, I would much rather play a quarterback who has lost a couple championships than someone who has merely watched a game from the box seats."

Learn more about Sami Grisafe and listen to "All-Un-American" here: https://www.facebook.com/SamiGrisafeMusic.


This article shared 1029 times since Wed Sep 21, 2016
facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email

  ARTICLES YOU MIGHT LIKE

Gay News

Billie Jean King to receive Muhammad Ali Award on Dec. 7
2021-12-02
Tennis icon Billie Jean King will be honored with the Muhammad Ali Legacy Award presented by Alkaline88 at the 2021 Sports Illustrated Awards on Tuesday, Dec. 7. The honor celebrates individuals whose dedication to the ideals ...


Gay News

ART 'Frida: Immersive Dream' coming to Germania Place in 2022
2021-11-30
Lighthouse Immersive, North America's leading producer of ground-breaking experiential art exhibits, and Maestro Immersive Art announce their newest immersive art installation, "Frida: Immersive Dream." This exhibition will run at Lighthouse ...


Gay News

THEATER 'Wicked' returning to Chicago in 2022
2021-11-30
The blockbuster musical Wicked will return to Broadway In Chicago's James M. Nederlander Theatre, 24 W. Randolph St., on Sept. 28-Dec. 4, 2022. Now the fifth longest-running show in Broadway history—and featuring songs such as "Popular" ...


Gay News

Billy Masters
2021-11-29
"The obvious one would be A Little Night Music. I know I could do that role very well now that I've gotten to this stage in my life, and you know it's a beautiful song in there. It's perfection."—Sarah Brightman reveals ...


Gay News

SHOWBIZ Netflix, Kal Penn, Dennis Rodman, 'The Voice,' 'Euphoria'
2021-11-28
Video below - Terra Field—one of the Netflix employees who organized the walkout around Dave Chappelle's comedy special The Closer—has resigned from the streamer, Deadline reported. Field, along with B. Pagels-Minor, organized an ...


Gay News

Broadway titan Stephen Sondheim dies at 91
2021-11-27
Stephen Sondheim, one of the giants of Broadway songwriting, died Nov. 26 at his home in Roxbury, Connecticut, according to media reports. He was 91. Among the works in the legend's oeuvre are Company (1970), Follies ...


Gay News

EVENTS John Grumpy Co. presenting 'Black Sunday' Nov. 28
2021-11-24
John Grumpy Co. is hosting "Black Sunday," which will take place at HVAC Pub, 3530 N. Clark St., on Sunday, Nov. 28, 9 p.m.-2 a.m.. This event will feature celebrity DJ Jamal Smallz. "Black Sunday" will ...


Gay News

MUSIC Grammy nominations announced; GLAAD comments
2021-11-24
On Nov. 23, the nominations for the 64th Annual Grammy Awards were announced. John Batiste, the musician who also serves as the bandleader on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, led among all nominees with 11 ...


Gay News

MUSIC Controversial rapper DaBaby postpones shows
2021-11-24
DaBaby's return to touring following fallout for making anti-gay comments at the Rolling Loud music festival in Miami this past summer has been postponed, The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported. The rapper's been promoting his "Live Show ...


Gay News

SHOWBIZ '9-1-1,' Billie Jean King, Lena Waithe, singer Mary Lambert, White Party
2021-11-21
Actor Rockmond Dunbar left the Fox show 9-1-1 after four seasons over a vaccine mandate, Deadline noted. His gay character, Michael Grant, was abruptly written off in the Nov. 15 episode, leaving fans of the first-responder ...


Gay News

Rainbow Railroad plans 'When I Am Free' benefit concert to get LGBTQI+s to safety
2021-11-20
--From a press release. Videos below - Chicago, IL (November 12, 2021) - The annual Chicago 5 Lives Fundraiser hosted by Rainbow Railroad is proud to return this year with "When I Am Free", a benefit concert offering attendees a premier evening of ...


Gay News

VIEWS In defense of the word 'lesbian'
2021-11-19
When I decided to come out to my mom, I wanted to wait until I could say the word "lesbian" out loud. But as I sat her down, I tripped over the long string of letters. "Mom, I'm gay," I blurted ...


Gay News

MOVIES 'Dante and Beatrice in Florence' Nov. 28-Dec. 5
2021-11-19
Porchlight Music Theatre is partnering with Hershey Felder Presents: Live from Florence and its second season of productions. The launch of this new season from Hershey Felder is the new musical film Dante and Beatrice in ...


Gay News

LGBTQ+ equality in nine Illinois municipalities detailed in Human Rights Campaign Index
2021-11-18
--From a press release - WASHINGTON — Today, the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) Foundation, the educational arm of the nation's largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ+) civil rights organization, in partnership with The ...


Gay News

Biden nominates second lesbian as federal judge
2021-11-18
U.S. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer recommended that President Joe Biden elevate the Manhattan federal judge overseeing the sex-abuse trial of British socialite Ghislaine Maxwell to the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, Reuters reported. Biden ...


 



Copyright © 2021 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 
 

TRENDINGBREAKINGPHOTOS







Sponsor


 



Donate


About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Advanced Search     
Windy City Queercast      Queercast Archives     
Press  Releases      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast      Blogs     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Privacy Policy     

Windy City Media Group publishes Windy City Times,
The Bi-Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.