Jeffery Straker is a well-known Regina musician, and his latest project is pretty personal.
He has put out a new music video for a song called Ready to be Brave. It's a coming out story of a young man from a Saskatchewan farm, and it's a theme that is close to Straker's heart.
Straker, a gay man, said that growing up, it was confusing trying to figure out what being gay meant.
"There were very few reference points as to what [being gay] was. And they were maybe a couple people who I heard, you know, whispered about being gay. But like, that's what gay was then. It was someone you whispered about in hushed tones, and that was it. And I didn't think I was that, but maybe I was," he said.
"I did know I was different ... It made the conversation with myself difficult."
Straker said he feels lucky that his coming out was met largely with support. But visible queerness in society is still met with a lot of resistance, Straker said. The video includes a kiss between two men and Straker felt it was important to include.
"We don't show a lot of same sex affection ... I don't even feel safe walking down the street holding hands with the boyfriend in Regina, and that's not me making things up and trying to be all dramatic. It's true. I really don't," he said.
And so the reason we did this in this video is it's just one teeny tiny step to hopefully kind of maybe normalize this a little bit more and let people know there's nothing to be afraid of here. It's just love. That's all it is."
Straker said he hopes young queer people in particular can resonate with the video.