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Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2022-08-31



Out singer Anne Steele reacts to Orlando tragedy with 'Love'
by Sarah Toce

This article shared 590 times since Wed Aug 17, 2016
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"When the Orlando shooting happened, I wasdevastated—as we all were," Anne Steele said."I didn't know how to react. I was on my way to Rehoboth Beach, Delaware, to do a concert at The Blue Moon and my wife, Kelli, and I listened to the coverage all the way there. Iknew I had to get on stage that next night and do a show and speak to our community in a way that would bring us all together in ourmoment of grief."

Steele took hold of the one resource she continually has access to in her arsenal when all else fails—the gift of song.

"As a singer, I know that my first reaction is to respond with music," she said. "Music unites and binds us. I knew that after that show, I needed to create something that would be able to give back to all the victims and their families. I couldn't understand how they could even survive the day, let alone the life that was ahead."

The unplanned journey to pen an inspirational tune led the New York resident to Nashville.

"I have a really good friend named Shane Stevens who is a very accomplished out singer/songwriter and I immediatelyreachedout to him in Nashville," she said. "I told him what I wanted to do and what kind of song I wanted to write. Iwanted to focus on the outpouring of love and acceptance that happened after the Pulsetragedy. I wanted to focus on the fact that the people in that club that were taken were young and dancing and feeling like they were in their safe place of acceptance and community and that they were ripped away in their'sanctuary.' That resonated to me."

The concept of coming together in light of tragedy also resonated with the What's Mine ( February 2015 ) powerhouse.

"I wanted to create a dance song that would encourage our community to continue to gather and celebratetheir lives by remembering what was lost, while still celebrating who we are as a community," Steele said. "Shane reached out to Stephony Smith, an incredible singer/songwriter, and asked her to collaborate with us on this track. The final piece was finding Grammy winning Engineer/Mixer Jonathan Crone, tocreate the most incredible dance track for our lyricsand melody. Together I believe we have created a perfect tribute to those we have lost, yet will never forget and will continue to honor."

Steele spent two years in Nashville post-college and welcomed the reunion.

"I have always loved the musical energy that comes from thisincredible city," she said. "I have been collaborating withseveral different songwriters and am currently working on my next record. I feel like every time I go back to Nashville I grow as an artist and a songwriter. I plan on spending a lot of time there in the coming year and hope to release a new record soon. We arewriting new things every day and can't wait for people to hear what is coming next for me."

Steele and her wife of three years, R Family Vacations co-founder Kelli Carpenter, have found a sweet spot in their life with their four children.

"I am inherently a positive person and so is my wife," Steele said. "Although you have to explain things every day to your children about terrible things that happen in our world, we continue to live in the light and positive of what the world has to offer. We just watched Hillary Clinton become the first woman to benominated for President of The United States! It's a beautiful time to show our two girls that anything is possible for them. We have four fantastic, smart, kind, loving children and we just strive every day to expose them to all the good in the world."

As much as they shower their children with love, it goes both ways.

"I never knew love like I do now after falling in love with my wife Kelli," Steele shared. "She shared her beautiful family with me, and that made me understand a completely different level of love. There is nothing that comes before Kelli and the kids. All priorities change when you love someone like that."

Steele and Carpenter spend a good chunk of time on the road.

"I am very fortunate in that, because of mywork and the work that my wife does, we do travel quite extensively throughout the year," Steele said. "A bit of our travel is within the United States, but we do travel a lot internationally as well. We arecontinually exposed to other cultures and I am often struck by how people find joy in their lives. As I stated before, I am someone that finds joy in my life pretty easily. I grew up without a lot of access to travel or financial means, yet my mother taught me that those things are not what truly makes you happy. Finding joy in the simplest things can make a full life. Every moment can be a chance to discover something new and magical. As I now travel the world with my wife, I can appreciate that we all find joy on our own path."

The Love is Louder project seemed the perfect fit for the inspirational single.

"I have a friend, Courtney Knowles, that I have known for a long time. Love is Louder is a nonprofit movement he started with The Jed Foundation and actress Brittany Snow to support anyone feeling mistreated and misunderstood," Steele explained. "It was initially an anti-bullying campaignprimarily. The reason I have grown so completely connected to this movement is because of the message that has grown from it. Themessage that if you turn the volume up on the love, that it is louder than hate, bigotry, racism, homophobia, fear, and hurt. That if we focus on the love—nothing can stop us. That together, we can make a better world for all of us. That is why I wanted to focus on love for the single, 'Love Can Take Us There.' It's easy to get wrapped in the sadness and unfairness of it all, but how will that help us and move us forward as a people? Instead, I chose to embrace the potential of what we can be together."

Learn more about Anne Steele by visiting her website, "Love Can Take Us There" is available on iTunes at

This article shared 590 times since Wed Aug 17, 2016
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