9. Sara Quin
While Tegan and Sara are in the middle of writing their own albums, they make time to contribute their always-recognizable voices on other artists’ songs. This year, Sara’s hooks on Theophilus London‘s “Why Even Try?” showed off a different side of her, as the hip-hop track was something completely different from past performances. Her appearance with the MC on David Letterman was highly anticipated, and the recent announcement of an upcoming video has music fans excited to see the collaboration continue. Sara also shared her love of reading several times throughout the last few years in interviews with the CBC about her favorite reads, and on the 2011 panel for Canada Reads, where she defended Jeff Lemire‘s graphic novel, Essex County. In the past couple of years, Sara has also been responsible for the introduction of An Horse, an Aussie band she helped cultivate and get signed, and she produced the 2010 debut album from Seattle indie-folk punk Fences. The girl has quite a range, and great taste.
8. Tegan Quin
When you’re a twin, it can sometimes be difficult to be seen as your own person. When you’re a Quin, you see this can happen on an international scale, but that’s because your names are forever linked as one of the hottest bands in the world. Yet, in the past couple of years, we have seen the individual sisters that make up Tegan and Sara take on their own side projects that has given them more of a look into their individuality. Tegan lent her vocals to punk band Against Me!‘s 2007 album, and she produced Char2D2‘s Small Vampires EP, one of the best debuts of 2009. Tegan also contributed a track to Augusten Burroughs‘ album accompanying his memoir, A Wolf at the Table, and made special appearances as part of readings for the best selling author. Tegan also tweets on behalf of the band @teganandsara, so fans have been able to follow her individual thoughts, suggestions and links for a better understanding of who the first half of the entity that is Tegan and Sara really is.
An accomplished actress and musician, Leisha has always been fearless when it comes to being out. Whether it was on the songs she wrote and performed with her band The Murmurs (later Gush) in the 1990s or in her early roles as an extra in the coming out episode of Ellen or as one of the leads in the gritty NYC lesbian teen film All Over Me, Leisha has been active in cultivating queer culture. It was her role as the hilarious bisexual journalist Alice Pieszecki The L Word that solidified her place as a lesbian it girl in the new millennium, something she’s held on to by continuing to show up on our TV screens in shows like Drop Dead Diva and CSI, but mostly due to her new musical duo Uh Huh Her. The band’s debut album, Common Reaction, hit number 9 on the Billboard Heatseaker’s Charts in 2008 and their track, “Same High,” was featured in The Kids Are All Right last year. With a second album being readied for a late-spring release and a new horror film, Fertile Ground, on the horizon with Gale Harold, Leisha continues to be one of the hottest gay women in the entertainment world.