LOSANGELESBLADE.COM • JUNE 29, 2017 • 27
about it. For me, it’s a really emotional thing, but it’s been cool to watch it be special for other people. BLADE: In “Believer,” Dan apologizes to you for being a bad ally. What did that apology mean to you and what did you originally think of the idea that would become the LoveLoud festival? GLENN: Dan and I have known each other for 15 years but never really known each other. We’ve always known of each other, we’ve run in similar circles, we know each other’s siblings and things like that, but I think when both of our bands started to become successful, there was like an air of competition. I was deeply moved that he took the time to call me, and since then he’s been so inclusive in including me in the process of his faith crisis. I’ve gotten to be really personal friends with him, which is nice because he’s always been a person in my life, but not someone I knew in a deep way. He was also a fan of “Excommunication,” and to know that he was affected by it, and that he saw my struggles and validated that, was just a beautiful gesture. And then to include me on creating LoveLoud — the whole LoveLoud foundation is just its own animal now — it’s just a really pure thing. I know that there’s often, and even in myself, questions like, “OK, but you’re this straight white guy, do we really need you to save the gay people?” But to me, I’ve gotten to know him in a way that I see his pure intentions. It’s not perfect, but he’s got pure intentions to hopefully stay loud and make people feel faith. That’s the whole message of LoveLoud, and hopefully the message people take from “Believer.” I can validate and stand by Dan as someone who is truly an ally and it’s really cool to see him grow in that way. BLADE: How did LoveLoud affect or move people? Do you think “Believer” will do the same? GLENN: In the credits, there are videos that people have sent to LoveLoud and kind of tell about their experiences; those are really touching to watch. A lot of personal family members and friends in that community were really moved by the event. We tried to keep it an event where everyone felt included; we didn’t want to exclude (people who are) believing Mormons, religious or didn’t understand LGBT culture; we wanted it to be a space where we were all sharing stories and music, and that’s really what it became. To see it grow and become an even bigger platform this year is really exciting. The first year, it had no big sponsors, it was very grassroots, put together through the energy and focus of everyone involved. This year, there’s gonna be bigger acts and bigger sponsors. In a way, that just shows approval from people who want it to continue to grow. The whole point of LoveLoud is to make people feel like they have a place and to change people’s lives and hearts. It’s doing that so far and it’s really cool to see. BLADE: What message do you want LGBT teens struggling with acceptance to hear most? GLENN: Personally, if I were to have heard or even just seen examples of healthy, open LGBT people, that would have changed my life. … For me, I want young LGBT people to know that you are absolutely perfect the way you are, that we all are struggling to find a place in this world regardless of sexuality, and I want them to know that we are divine and being queer is a superpower. I shouldn’t feel like I’m a challenge. It took me way too long to accept that. I hope and wish that young people that have that chance would take it and live their lives to the fullest and not feel like they are made to be less than.
Tyler Glenn (left) with Dan Reynolds at the ‘Believer’ premiere party. Photo by Kristina Namelss courtesy StarPix for HBO
Losangelesblade.com, Volume 2, Issue 17, June 29, 2018