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Out superstar Lil Nas X covers Variety’s Power of Young Hollywood Issue, and inside he spills the tea on a plethora of topics, including becoming a self-made legend, finding love in a hopeless place, why he thinks bottom shaming is a form of misogyny, and why he had to hire more security after the release of his hit single Montero (Call Me By Your Name).

Get into the highlights below…

On His Approach To Pop Stardom:

“I’m always trying to give people a show, you know? While also pointing out the flaws in society. I have a goal in my head for where I want to be, but my entire life and career has been just going in and winging it. Some things work really well and some don’t work at all, and a lot of them are very much last minute — like, I planned the BET kiss literally a day or two before it happened. I just use anything that comes at me to my advantage, even things that others may see as a disadvantage.”

On Crossing PathsWith Beyonce & Dancing With Her At Her Halloween Party:

“She just said she’s super proud of me and to keep going; it was a next-level experience”

On His Love Life:

“I’ve had some good boyfriends and some bad ones. A lot of them were emotionally unavailable or had a lot of insecurity.” But he says he’s found someone special now. “I think this is the one. I can’t explain it — it’s just a feeling.”

On Learning To Love Himself:

“[Encountering homophobia] bred a lot of self-hate. But it also made me stronger. Once I was 17 or 18, I finally accepted it — like, for sure accepted it, slowly, more and more — and now I’ve grown into a person that is 100% open with it.”

On Not Speaking About Homophobia In Hip Hop:

“The honest truth is, I don’t want to speak on a lot of the homophobia within rap because I feel like this is a very dangerous playing field. It’s more for my own safety rather than anything else.”

On Hiring More Security:

“Yeah [I feel unsafe], a lot of times, absolutely,” he says. “Especially after [‘Montero’]. There was literally someone who chased my car a few days after that video came out, yelling, ‘F*ck you!’ or something. And that’s when I actually started getting security.” Although he’s not sure the video is what caused this stranger to pursue him, “I feel like it couldn’t be a coincidence.”

On His Forthcoming Album:

In the article he shares only general details about his album: In addition to being “much more personal” lyrically, it is as musically diverse as “7,” his 2019 debut EP, but “much more cohesive.”

On Almost Starring In Euphoria:

“I was actually going to do ‘Euphoria,’ but I didn’t want to take time away from finishing my album. I definitely want to get into acting, but I feel I have to give it my all, and I want to focus on music for right now. I want my first movie to be amazing.”

On How He Spent The Covid-19 Lockdown:

“I think I spent all of the pandemic making music and crying — no in-betweens. For the first month or so, I did not leave my house, and once I did, I was super overly critical of everything I was making. I was letting everything online get to me and feeling like things were over for me.”

On Her Being A Twitter Stan In Earlier Life Is Informing His Stardom Now:

“Being on stan Twitter as a whole, I learned a lot about the things that artists have to go through and also a lot of music industry history. It’s helping me a lot.”

On Bottom Shaming Within The Gay Community:

“I feel like even within the gay community, people see bottoming as a joke or something. And somebody who bottoms is beneath a top or something. The idea of that, I feel like, is a form of misogyny between men,” he said. “It doesn’t make any sense, and people attribute certain traits to whichever sexual position you decide to take. A lot of people say, ‘It’s just a joke.’ But all jokes have truths to them.”

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