We all know about the pink elephant in the room — the this that is obviously there, but which no one wants to talk about: The guy with the Make America Great Again cap at the Rose Room. The cocktail party guest who is casually talking to the person who is secretly sleeping with his partner. And gay folks in hip-hop music.

We know it’s there — Frank Ocean made us confront it. But for local artist Lady BSmoove — who we profiled last year — it was a mission to make sure being queer and into rap wasn’t just for celebrities, an oxymoron where the exception proved the rule.

Last year, she helped launch the Pink Elephant Hip-Hop Festival in Austin, and the event is back for a second go-round.

Billed as the nation’s largest annual LGBT hip-hop music fest, the weekend event brings together entertainers from all around the country. This year, 25 musicians will gather March 31–April 2 for concerts, panels and parties celebrating musicmakers who have been shut out from the mainstream. “Our purpose is simple: Create a place where music strengthens community,” co-founder Pierre Hill said.

— Arnold Wayne Jones

To learn more or purchase tickets, visit

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition March 24, 2017.