From traumatic events, some of the most beautiful art can be crafted. With that in mind, OUTMusic Award winning singer/songwriter Justin Utley just released “Survivors”, which is the debut single from his soon-to-be-released third studio album, Scars.
Recorded in Salt Lake City, “Survivors” is an anthemic pop track, written by Swedish songwriting duo Linda & Ylva, that has been reworked and expanded upon by Utley to craft a torch song-esque anthem that includes his rallying cry against conversion therapy, the disproven pseudoscientific practice of attempting to change an individual’s sexual orientation using psychological and spiritual interventions.
The video to “Survivors” is extremely emotional, and also features a collaboration with the University of Utah Chamber Orchestra, as well as an orchestral version that will be featured on the forthcoming album. “Survivors” is being distributed independently and is available on Apple Music, Spotify and all digital platforms. During the month of July, all proceeds from “Survivors” will be donated to the Born Perfect Campaign, an organization working to ban conversion therapy.
“Survivors” is about facing and overcoming insurmountable odds and learning to thrive in the face of adversity,” explains Justin Utley from his Salt Lake City home. “It’s about survivors of abuse in all forms and how it takes a great deal of effort to move forward in life while carrying the heavy burden of trauma.
Justin Utley lessons on survival come first hand. Growing up in a devout Mormon home, he initially believed his same gender attraction was an addiction, disorder, and learned behavior. He was then required to undergo two years of faith-based conversion therapy, even taking medications prescribed to help suppress the feelings.
Justin Utley’s experience with discrimination, religious bullying, his own internal homophobia, and suicide are all depicted in the music video for “Survivors.” It features a little girl (played by Justin Utley’s niece!), confronting a fight or flight moment, who learns that she has the power to survive, thrive, and learn to fly. It perfectly echoes Utley’s life mantra: even if you can’t see a silver lining, you can make one.
Justin Utley’s “Survivors” is available on Apple Music, Spotify and all digital platforms. During the month of July 2019, all proceeds from “Survivors” will be donated to the Born Perfect Campaign, a survivor-led movement working to end conversion therapy.
Visit Justin Utley’s website: https://www.justinutley.com/
Follow him on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/JustinUtley/
Born Perfect Campaign: http://www.nclrights.org/our-work/bornperfect/