Get Ready to Stan Benét

by | Nov 25, 2020 | QUEER RVA

Richmond-based musician Benét’s latest project, Stan Account, features tunes exploring their love and appreciation of some iconic TV shows. We have no choice but to stan.

Richmond musician Benét has been stanning for a long time now. It only made sense for their love of various musicians and television shows to spill over into their songs. That’s exactly what’s happened on their brand new release for Richmond’s own Citrus City, Stan Account.

Benét, who uses they/them pronouns, jokingly describes themselves as a stan — a slang term used for a person with an overzealous obsession for a particular piece of pop culture, which has more recently become synonymous with the word “fan.” It’s only natural that they’ve decided to commemorate that portion of their multifaceted life through their songwriting. In that vein, Stan Account acts as an homage to the television series that have impacted their life.

Stan Account is me paying respects to the shows that kept me company,” Benét said, “when I didn’t have much else to focus on.”

Photo by Lucienne Nghiem

Benét does not confine their artistry to any specific genre, describing their music as “the pop version of every genre.” Their latest EP consists of two songs, “Glee” and “Killing Eve.” Both are named after iconic TV shows, and both perfectly capture through Benét’s candid lyrics the cathartic nostalgia every pop culture fanatic experiences while watching their favorite shows. Make no mistake — these chill, melodic bedroom pop tracks are love messages from Benét to their favorite shows and characters. However, the lyrics are very universal, as in “Killing Eve”’s confession of love for another. 

Stan Account is also a reflection of Benét’s life journey as a stan from childhood to adulthood. They grew up watching “Glee,” but stanning “Killing Eve,” they said, is sort of a transition into adulthood. “The contrast between the tracks is a perfect example of the two stages of my life that I’m kind of paying respects to,” they said.

Fans of the shows should pay close to the lyrics, as both songs contain Easter egg-like references to the respective TV shows. The song “Killing Eve” is a reflection of the two main characters’ relationship during the show’s third season finale, while “Glee” is a particularly sentimental reflection of the show’s role as a childhood staple.

Growing up in a music-oriented family, Benét was constantly surrounded by music at home and at church; delving into a music career was a natural route for them. Besides obsessing over characters like Glee‘s Santana Lopez and Quinn Fabray, they would post cover videos performed from their bedroom. 

Indeed, Stan Account‘s album art teleports us right into Benét’s childhood bedroom. Illustrated by fellow Richmond musician Alfred, the cover emulates the innocence and simplicity of the two tracks.

Earlier this year, with the help of their friend and producer Cameron Smith, who also produced Stan Account, Benét released their first single, “Funny.” They said the response was welcoming yet shocking.

Part of Benét’s disbelief stems from the initial nervousness upon stepping onto the Richmond music scene. As a Black trans non-binary person, Benét said they did not initially introduce themselves as a non-binary person to the music world because there was not “a lot of representation in the area, or if there was, they weren’t really being uplifted.”

Since coming out, Benét said they have received love from the Richmond music scene and community, and want to use their platform to highlight other Black LGBTQ musicians.

“I’m hoping I’m actively trying to uplift the queer people in the scene,” Benét said, “and work with as many people that are like me.”

With the release of Stan Account, Benét wishes to work toward the career that they were destined to be since performing covers in their bedroom — a full time artist.

“I really want to continue to make a name for this city and work with people that have been pioneers in making the RVA music scene what it is,” they said.

Stan Account is available to listen on all music streaming platforms and physical cassette tapes are available for purchase on the Citrus City Records website.

Photos courtesy Benét

David Tran

David Tran

David Tran is a senior at Virginia Commonwealth University studying Print/Online Journalism. When he is not working on a story, he can be found trying out new vegan recipes or catching up on some readings.

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