Flawless Sabrina Stars in Bleachers' "Don't Take The Money" Single Art

Flawless Sabrina Stars in Bleachers' "Don't Take The Money" Single Art

The Bleachers frontman Jack Antonoff taps a queer icon for his latest single.

The Bleachers frontman Jack Antonoff taps a queer icon for his latest single.

Text: William Defebaugh

Last week, Bleachers—fronted by Jack Antonoff, the musical mastermind behind many of your favorite pop songs—released the first single from their upcoming sophomore album. Co-written by Lorde, "Don't Take The Money" is an irresistible, '80s-tinged power ballad that would feel right at home playing in the climax scene of a John Hughes movie. The official cover art for the single shows Antonoff posing with a quizzical expression and an elderly woman resting on top of his head, her face out of the frame. Antonoff has since taken to Instagram to post the full photo (by Michael Bailey-Gates), revealing the woman to be none other than Flawless Sabrina.

In case your unfamiliar with Miss Sabrina, Diana Tourjee described her best in her moving tribute for V99: "Sabrina is now 76 years old, something like a seer, and the androgyne who owned and operated a national organization for gender-nonconforming people back when being queer was considered both a mental illness and a crime. In the 1960s, Sabrina was a central figure in a renegade transgender movement that traveled the American underground. Through her drag organization, the National Academy, Sabrina came head-to-head with a monolithic American majority that loathed gender diversity."

It might seem an odd pairing at first glance, but then again, Antonoff (and his girlfriend, Lena Dunham) has been a vocal ally for the LGBTQ community for years. Most recently, he announced that $1 of every concert ticket he sells will go towards homeless LGBTQ youth through his foundation, the Ally Coalition. Check out the full photo below, along with the singer's first post explaining the backstory of "Don't Take The Money."

hi. today i'm releasing the first song from an album that has taken every piece of me to make. there are endless things i'm dying to tell you about the past two years of making this album - some incredible and filled with joy, some deeply painful. but i'll wait on that because today is just about this introduction. don't take the money is the front door to this house. it's a big strange house but this is how i believe it should be entered. dttm is something i say in my head a lot. it's not about actual money. it's about following a light. a gut feeling. not following a deep gut feeling destroys your art and the people around you. so i say it in my head constantly. sometimes about something very specific relating to music, sometimes about a bigger question about marriage or depression :):). point is, it's become my phrase to stay on track. specifically in don't take the money i'm taking about my relationship. verses go through the past, pre is an explosive fight and the chorus is that moment when you hit rock bottom and everything is clear. you know that feeling? when you've tried your best to destroy yourself and someone else but it's too strong to be destroyed? when you've tried to fling you a your partner out of an emotional window but you keep landing in heaven? that's when it's all clear. as much as i say don't take the money in my head, i also can beg it of the people i love. that's what i'm doing in that chorus. beyond the lyrics, so much of everything i'm working on is meant to have an intense push and pull between euphoria and sadness. dttm is the front door because it hold both of those feelings so specifically. that is the core of bleachers. ok. i'm in bed and just woke so i'm very clear right now. no strange baggage yet from the today. i've missed sharing music with you. sometimes you have to go into a hole and gather things before you present them. gotta find things that are the ones you need to present. i'm ready to show you all the ideas of gathered. here's the first - and here's tour dates so we can celebrate it all together. much more to come. god this is such a bizarre and wonderful feeling. ranting. sorry. love you very much. jack x dttm x

A post shared by jack antonoff (@jackantonoff) on

UP NEXT

Björk’s New "Notget" Video is a Bizarre, Light-Filled Virtual Reality Experience