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queer trap artist kevin fret shot dead in puerto rico

January 11, 2019
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Very sad news out of Puerto Rico. 24-year-old openly gay trap artist Kevin Fret was shot and killed in San Juan. Just the latest in what CNN is describing as a wave of violence in the city, Fret was gunned down by a motorcyclist while driving around the country’s capital around 5:30 a.m Thursday morning. Recognizable by his Latinx hip hop bops and unapologetic style, the “Soy Asi” rapper was making important strides towards de-hyper-masculine rap music by challenging the patriarchy and heteronormativity with his style and artistry. Described by manager Eduardo Rodriguez as “an artistic soul and a big-hearted dreamer,” Fret used his popularity and platform to advocate against bullying and uplift the LGBTQ+ community. As a rising star, this made him a target of homophobic antagonism, which he vocalized prior to his untimely death.

In the wake of his killing, the Puerto Rico Trans Youth Coalition wrote on Facebook that Fret’s murder might even be considered a hate crime. “With his colorful and empowered show, Fret disobeyed many of the expectations of hegemonic masculinity that dominate the trap genre,” the post reads in part. “Kevin broke many barriers and served as a necessary representation, denouncing without filter the homophobia of colleagues in artistic scenes notorious for their machismo and misogyny.”