She skyrocketed to international stardom in 2008 with her tongue-in-cheek/mouth hit, I Kissed a Girl.
Now, almost a decade later, Katy Perry is revealing the real-life inspiration behind the track that launched her career.
“Truth be told, I did more than that!,” she quipped while accepting the National Equality Award 2017 Human Rights Commission Gala in LA.
"I'm just a singer and songwriter, honestly," she went on. "I speak my truths and I paint my fantasies into these little bite-size pop songs. For instance, 'I kissed a girl and I liked it.'”
The 32-year-old, whose parents are both pastors, also spoke of her religious upbringing, recalling how she tried her to quash her curiosity by praying “the gay away at Jesus camps”.
It was only after making the leap from gospel to mainstream pop that her preconceived views shifted. “I found my gift and my gift introduced me to people outside my bubble and my bubble started to burst,” she said, adding that as a result, she’s now found her tribe.
"These people were nothing like I had been taught to fear," Katy says. "They were the most free, strong, kind, and inclusive people that I have ever met. They stimulated my mind, and they filled my heart with joy, and they danced with joy while doing it.
“These people are actually, magic, and they are magic because they are living their truth."
While she ultimately chose to forge her own path aside from that of her parents’ religious beliefs – they’ve since asked Christians to pray for their daughter, not judge her – Katy reassures that for the friends she’d made, she wouldn’t have it any other way.
“The path of discovery has made me, has tested me, and forever changed me. You don’t get to choose your family, but you can choose your tribe,” she said.
“I stand here as real evidence for all that no matter where you came from it is about where you are going, that real change, real evolution, and that real perception shift can happen, if we open our minds and soften our hearts.”
This story originally appeared on Now To Love