Ari Straprans Leff, best known to the world as Lauv, is an American singer and songwriter. He was born on August 8, 1994, in San Francisco, California before moving to Atlanta in Georgia, and finally settling in a Philadelphia suburb. Ever since he was young, Lauv already had a strong interest in music. He took piano and guitar lessons and even started writing his own songs at 14 years old.
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After finishing high school, Lauv studied at New York University’s Steinhardt School with a degree in music technology. He was also a student intern at Jungle City Studios, where prominent artists like Jay-Z and Justin Timberlake recorded. Around 2014, the aspiring singer adopted his now-famous stage name, Lauv. The name is Latvian for “lion”, which also pays homage to his family’s heritage.
Before his big break, Lauv wrote songs for other artists, including Charlie XCX and Demi Lovato. In 2017, he released the single “I Like Me Better,” catapulting him to overnight success. The single paved the way for international stardom, allowing Lauv to release his first unofficial album, “I Met You When I Was 18” (The Playlist). He then published his debut album “How I’m Feeling” in 2019.
Thanks to the success of his debut album, Lauv was able to collaborate with many famous names, like LANY and K-pop sensation BTS. As the singer enjoyed his newfound success, more eyes were glued to his personal life. Fans are dying to know all the behind-the-scenes details about his relationships, including the answer to the question: is Lauv gay? Here’s what the public knows so far.
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Lauv on Relationships, Mental Health, and Sexuality
In 2018, Lauv sparked dating rumors with another singer, Julia Michaels. Fans grew even more curious after the I Like Me Better singer posted an out-of-the-blue juicy post on Twitter:
Not long after that, Michaels commented on an Instagram post: “I love everything about you,” naturally referring to her rumored beau.
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While the duo never officially released a statement about their relationship, the chemistry was undeniable. The couple shared a duet, “There’s No Way,” and Michaels made a surprise appearance at one of Lauv’s concerts. Unfortunately, the couple wasn’t meant to be and the pairing fizzled out before the end of the year. Michaels clued in fans on their break-up by posting an Instagram story that stated:
In 2019, Lauv released a single he wrote with Troye Sivan called “I’m So Tired.” Aside from the catchy tune, many fans noticed the close friendship between the two singers. Sivan came out in 2013 and was openly gay, and his duet with Lauv only prompted more speculation regarding the latter’s sexuality. More talks piled up after the singer opened up about his friendship with Sivan in an interview with Gay Times Magazine.
Lauv maintained that he and Sivan were just friends. He also considers himself an LGBTQ ally in the same interview.
When it comes to updates about his love life, Lauv doesn’t shy away from showing off his new girlfriend, Sophie Cates, who’s also a singer and songwriter. The couple met early in 2021 and has been inseparable ever since. Cates co-wrote the song “All 4 Nothing” (So In Love) and starred in the music video.
Is Lauv Gay?
No, Lauv is not gay. While there were dating rumors between Lauv and Troye Sivan, the singer maintained that they were just friends. However, he considers Sivan’s friendship to be important to him, especially since he sees himself as an LGBTQ ally. Lauv is currently dating fellow singer Sophie Cates.