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National Pride Month feature: Gay and Lesbian musical artists


alphanguy74

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I was going to do this last week, and it slipped my mind with my hectic work schedule. Each day I'll post a video of a gay and lesbian recording artist, and we can discuss. My first is Johhny Mathis, since he was one of the first to come out, in 1982 in a people magazine interview. He said he's been very low key over the years, because after that interview, he would get threats every city he went to if he gave interviews ahead of time. He's loved by many... and now things are going better for him in that regard. This has always been one of my favorite performances by him. He's always dressed in suits, it's nice to see him in something casual:

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He was probably one of those used as a cautionary tale, which is a shame. He was so popular and then all but vanished. For some time I even thought this was an urban legend, or one of those "did you hear" stories.

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Great topic alphanguy!

On the current side of things and very much a hot topic in the music industry is Tom Gabel's announcement, the lead singer of popular punk rock band, AGAINST ME!, that he is transgender, having dealt with gender dysphoria since childhood. Gabel plans to transition to living as a woman and eventually take the name Laura Jane Grace. With wife and child, his wife has publicly supported his decision.

"The cliché is that you're a woman trapped in a man's body, but it's not that simple. It's a feeling of detachment from your body and from yourself. And It's shitty, man. It's really [[email protected]#$%^&*] shitty." Gabel describing gender dysphoria.

I know probably all of you have never heard of Against Me!, demographically or otherwise, but this news just blows my mind and having come out recently as well, my respect for Laura is infinite and hope her fans accept the change as the band is said to continue with her as lead. What will happen to not only their sound, but support, should be interesting to see unfold.

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I never knew that Johnny Mathis was gay.

How could you not! laugh.png

I think these were his two giant hits. Certainly his "Misty" is the definitive version

<iframe width="640" height="480" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/NexJ-GBH4UA" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

I think Chances Are is a really good song that showcased his voice nicely

<iframe width="640" height="480" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/aM-UIpxW1tc" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

I hope this topic eventually gets to Johnny Ray.

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"Wonderful Wonderful" was also a big hit.

I never knew about Johnny Ray. For some reason I always thought he was British. What a sad life. It just reminds me of how much of a fantasy world the TV/movie magazines are (he has big stories in some of the 50's issues I have).

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Tonight we have Klaus Nomi. What an unusual character! Operatic countertenor and all. Unfortunately, he died of AIDS in 1983. He was born in Germany in 1944, and first got notice qas one of David Bowie's backup singers on Saturday Night Live in 1978.

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I'm amazed that Johnny Mathis came out as early as 1982! I'm racking my brain but I can't come up with any Swedish artist who was out that early. Apart from Alexander Bard and Jean-Pierre Barda from Army of Lovers, the first major Swedish artist who came out must have been Eva Dahlgren in 1996.

This is her biggest hit, from 1991, "Vem tänder stjärnorna" ("Who kindles the stars" in English)

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Tonight we have George Michael (I had to skip last night, I had a migraine). Of course, he was outed in a very public and humiliating way, Boy George said he woke up to the news on CNN and jumped out of bed screaming "What fuc$ing justice!" Because he said that Michael was apparently quite stuck up in real life. I always loved his music and had a crush on him for the longest time, but lost interest because he stopped putting out nproduct and stopped appearing in his videos, and when he did, he ALWAYS dressed in black, I kept wondering if he was going to a funeral, or if Johnny Cash ad taken over his body. This song he put out right after the scandal was GREAT, and edgy, and gave me hope, cause he was IN THE VIDEO, and not in black (Except as the pervert cop) The mirror ball urinals with flashing phallic CFL's inside them is a RIOT! And the song itself had a great groove, sounded like it came right off the soundtrack of a blaxploitation film.

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I loved all three Wham albums. George Michael also seemed ashamed of those songs once the 90's rolled around, and that's another thing that pissed me off. I was like "You just wrote the damn things less than 10 years ago!" Tonight, we have K.D. Lang. She started out in country, and then had greater success in more pop/crossover type songs:

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My parents, particularly my mom, were big KD Lang fans early on, back when she sang for free on the street corners in Edmonton where we lived. Her first album was a homage to Patsy Cline, and even though my mom's not a big country fan in general, she's always said she prefered her when she was country.

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Eric, you mentioned Patsy Cline, tonight's featured lady is someone who was supposed to be Patsy's successor after she died... but didn't quite make it..... Wilma Burgess. Owen Bradley discovered her, and after losing Patsy, he was looking for someone similar in sound to produce. Wilma had a degree to become a P.E. teacher (I know, how stereotypical) and then Owen convinced her to come to Nashville and record. She never hid herself and refused to sing gender specific lyrics, except on a couple of occasions as a trade off compromise for a couple of songs she really wanted to record. She placed 15 songs on the country charts over her career, and later on, opened the Hitching Post, Nashville's first Lesbian bar, where she performed every weekend through the late 80's and 90's until her death in 2003.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eitkflvfin4

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