Today, on America’s birthday, singer Joy Villa, famous for wearing a bold Donald Trump dress to the Grammy Awards, just dropped a new song, “Make America Great Again!” The song is trending high again today and previously hit #3 on Amazon pre-sale in less that 24 hours.
“I wanted to make it a love song to America and make it more of a unified country and more of a unified viewpoint that we need love, we need tolerance, we need respect America,” Villa told Bold. “Why are we in this mess that we can’t even listen to each other? … I just wanted to give something of hope and value.”
A strong supporter of President Donald Trump, Villa is a Millennial woman of African, Italian and Choctaw Indian ancestry. And in Los Angeles, no less — hardly Trump’s base. After she owned the Grammys red carpet, her album “I Make the Static” hit the #1 spot on iTunes and Amazon and #12 on Billboard.
“I’m not a politician,” Villa said. “I’m not running for office; I’m not saying you have to vote a certain way. I think it’s very important for me to separate myself and say that’s never been my message.”
Comparing her work to “Yes We Can” a song produced by Black Eyed Peas frontman will.i.am, released in February 2008 supporting the historic presidential campaign for Barack Obama, Villa said she wouldn’t find any fault with an artist for being pro-Obama, though she hoped progressives would be more open to hearing the other side.
“I want there to be room for everyone in the law, without violence, without attacking,” Villa said. “Instead of having violent imagery or assassination, why don’t you just do something like the Black Eyed Peas, lifting up your cause instead of being against something? Talking about Red and Blue States, I think there’s a purple circle were some of these values will overlap, and that’s where I’m hoping we can spark some change and conversation.”
Villa said she was discouraged by imagery and violent protesting she has seen from people on the Left following Trump’s November victory, from Madonna threatening to blow up the White House to Kathy Griffin holding a mock severed Trump head and Shakespeare actors in Manhattan depicted a Trump stabbing (at taxpayer’s expense).
“I wouldn’t literally try to silence anyone, but I would like to have more encouragement of positive dialogue,” Villa said. “And if you’re an artist, that’s what you do. You’re a musician, that’s what you do. I don’t think you can separate your art from your political views if those are super strong to you … Every artist, every celebrity has a responsibility to ask ‘Is this going to cause more harm, more fear, and pain rather than more love or respect?’ You can move people’s opinion and move people toward your cause in a really beautiful way, or you can put people into pain and fear and suffering, and it won’t necessarily help your cause. Art is supposed to inspire and make us think, not make us fear for our lives … Artists have a responsibility for what they say.”
Villa said artists historically had to decide between the “pocketbook or the heart,” though she thinks the Internet has opened artists to directly reach fans.
“It’s a different time for music because there’s no record label that can control you in the way they used to,” Villa said, who also said she’s not opposed to record labels and is in fact speaking to several right now.
“You always open yourself up for attack when you did something strong like I did, and like I do with this song, but I’m an independent artist,” Villa said. “But [record labels] are professionals, and they look at the numbers. The success doesn’t lie, no matter who you voted for. It’s not affected me at all, I don’t worry about ‘Is this going to make money or not?’ I think ‘Is this something I want to leave a legacy behind? Do I want to be talking about butts and drugs and getting crunk in the club?'”
Villa has been working with members of the Trump campaign and recently visited the White House to meet Ivanka Trump. She said she hopes her song can serve as a unifying salve in the wake of a divisive election.
“It’s America’s birthday, and it’s such a great holiday, and this is a love song to America,” Villa said. “In the lyrics, it’s not negativity, it’s ‘Where have we gone astray?’ but there’s also a message of hope. We can still make America great again. We can still overcome whatever differences we have.”
Carrie Sheffield is the founder of Bold. She is passionate about storytelling to empower and connect others.
Lovely, on this 4th of July most people are less concerned with politics. They are about coming together for a better today and tomorrow.
Some people are incapable of putting aside their differences. So they can’t see past today.
Odd that she doesn’t mention her devotion to L. Ron Hubbard and his brutal successor, David Miscavige. Or am I being too negative bringing up Sea Org slavery, disconnection and harassment of anyone who speaks out against their policies? Well, Trump and Hubbard have many parallels, so I suppose I shouldn’t be surprised. It seems that Ms. Villa (now Mrs. Overgaard) started out as a Bernie supporter, but saw the possibility for another fifteen minutes of fame by wearing yet another controversial, if somewhat more modest, outfit on the Grammy runway (she is “Grammy considered” after all) and running with the publicity and damn the consequences.
She is just a minor flunky to L. Ron Hubbard and his dying cult of followers. I could be mean and make comments about her looks but that might give drag queens a bad name.