Author: Darryl W. Bullock
Publisher: The Overlook Press
Category: Social Science
The most comprehensive history of LGBT music ever compiled, encompassing a century of music by and for the LGBT community LGBT musicians have shaped the development of music over the last century, with a sexually progressive soundtrack in the background of the gay community’s struggle for acceptance. With the advent of recording technology, LGBT messages were for the first time brought to the forefront of popular music. David Bowie Made Me Gay is the first book to cover the breadth of history of recorded music by and for the LGBT community and how those records influenced the evolution of the music we listen to today. David Bowie Made Me Gay uncovers the lives of the people who made these records, and offers a lively canter through the scarcely documented history of LGBT music-makers. Darryl W. Bullock discusses how gay, lesbian, and bisexual performers influenced Jazz and Blues; examines the almost forgotten Pansy Craze in the years between the two World Wars (when many LGBT performers were feted by royalty and Hollywood alike); chronicles the dark years after the depression when gay life was driven deep underground; celebrates the re-emergence of LGBT performers in the post-Stonewall years; and highlights today’s most legendary out-gay pop stars: Elton John, Boy George, Freddie Mercury, and George Michael.
Author: Darryl W. Bullock
Publisher: The Overlook Press
Category: Biography & Autobiography
Finally, a biography of Florence Foster Jenkins, considered the world's worst opera singer, soon to be portrayed by Meryl Streep in the forthcoming film. "Probably the most complete and absolute lack of talent ever publicly displayed." —Life Magazine Madame Jenkins couldn't carry a tune in a bucket: despite that, in 1944 at the age of 76, she played Carnegie Hall to a capacity audience and had celebrity fans by the score. Her infamous 1940s recordings are still highly-prized today. In his well-researched and thoroughly entertaining biography, Darryl W. Bullock tells of Florence Foster Jenkins meteoric rise to success and the man who stood beside her, through every sharp note. Florence was ridiculed for her poor control of timing, pitch, and tone, and terrible pronunciation of foreign lyrics, but the sheer entertainment value of her caterwauling packed out theatres around the United States, with the 'singer' firmly convinced of her own talent, partly thanks to the devoted attention for her husband and manager St Clair Bayfield. Her story is one of triumph in the face of adversity, courage, conviction and of the belief that with dedication and commitment a true artist can achieve anything.
How Music Came Out
Author: Martin Aston
(Book). Popular music's gay DNA is inarguable: from Elvis in eye shadow to k.d. lang's female Elvis; from Little Richard's "Tutti Frutti" to David Bowie's bisexual alien; from Frankie Say "Relax" to house music godfather Frankie Knuckles; from Kurt Cobain in a dress to punk icon/couture model Beth Ditto. Yet most of the first performers to defy the social and political conservatism of their time were typically the least visible, such as the '50s lesbian rockabilly trio and the '60s gay soul renegade, the gay country music band and the real gay glam and punk bands, the first queer rappers and trans rockers. Breaking Down the Walls of Heartache is not only the first book to tell the story of how music "came out" but to the first to shed light on these hidden pioneers alongside their famous counterparts. Author Martin Aston's ambitious and comprehensive narrative unfolds over a hundred years, against a backdrop of social and political shifts, as gay liberation transmuted into LGBTQ rights, pushing for visibility and equality, from 1920s liberalism through to the closet of postwar years, the eventual breakthroughs of the '60s, the permissive '70s, the mainstream invasion and AIDS crisis of the '80s, and the advances of the '90s and noughties. Aston also documents the retrogressive steps in Russia and parts of Africa, where songs bravely encapsulating the LGBTQ experience signify how the journey from illegality and bigotry to freedom is far from over.
Performance, Race, and Sexuality in the Harlem Renaissance
Author: James F. Wilson
Publisher: University of Michigan Press
Category: Performing Arts
Bulldaggers, Pansies, and Chocolate Babies explores historically neglected plays and performances that challenged early 20th-century notions of the stratification of race, gender, class, and sexual orientation. In the 1920s and early '30s African American performers on Broadway stages, in Harlem nightclubs and dance halls, and in private homes hosting rent parties challenged white middle-class morality. Blues-singing butch lesbians, popularly known as "bulldaggers," performed bawdy songs, and cross-dressing men vied for prizes in lavish drag balls, while black and white women flaunted their sexuality in scandalous melodramas and musical revues. Race leaders, preachers, and theater critics spoke out against these performances to no avail---mainstream audiences couldn't get enough of this riotous entertainment. James F. Wilson has based his rich cultural history on a wide range of documents from the period, including eyewitness accounts, newspaper reports, songs, and play scripts, combining archival research with an analysis grounded in a cultural studies framework that incorporates both queer theory and critical race theory. Throughout, he argues against the widely held belief that the stereotypical forms of black, lesbian, and gay show business of the 1920s prohibited the emergence of distinctive new voices. Figuring prominently in the book are African American performers including Gladys Bentley, Ethel Waters, and Florence Mills; and prominent writers, artists, and leaders of the era, including Langston Hughes, Wallace Thurman, Zora Neale Hurston, and W. E. B. DuBois. James F. Wilson is Professor of English and Theatre at LaGuardia Community College, City University of New York.
A Celebration of LGBTQ+ Legends
Author: Will Larnach-Jones
Publisher: Hardie Grant
Featuring beautifully illustrated portraits and profiles, 50 Queer Musicians Who Changed the World is a tribute to queer ground breakers who changed the face of music and popular culture. LGBTQ musicians have been pushing for change since the 1920s, with singers such as Bessie Smith crooning about same-sex liaisons almost 100 years ago – long before Frankie Goes to Hollywood were telling everyone to 'Relax'. This book is a celebration of artists who became icons, and broke new ground through song. From legendary figures such as Freddie Mercury, Little Richard, and George Michael, to bands like Bronski Beat, The Scissor Sisters, The XX, and The Petshop Boys, and more contemporary figures including Frank Ocean, Beth Ditto, and Rufus Wainright, these are the people who made an unforgettable impact. Elegantly illustrated and packaged, these stories make utterly inspirational reading.
Race and Representation After 9/11
Author: Evelyn Alsultany
Publisher: NYU Press
Category: Literary Criticism
After 9/11, there was an increase in both the incidence of hate crimes and government policies that targeted Arabs and Muslims and the proliferation of sympathetic portrayals of Arabs and Muslims in the U.S. media. Arabs and Muslims in the Media examines this paradox and investigates the increase of sympathetic images of “the enemy” during the War on Terror. Evelyn Alsultany explains that a new standard in racial and cultural representations emerged out of the multicultural movement of the 1990s that involves balancing a negative representation with a positive one, what she refers to as “simplified complex representations.” This has meant that if the storyline of a TV drama or film represents an Arab or Muslim as a terrorist, then the storyline also includes a “positive” representation of an Arab, Muslim, Arab American, or Muslim American to offset the potential stereotype. Analyzing how TV dramas such as The Practice, 24, Law and Order, NYPD Blue, and Sleeper Cell, news-reporting, and non-profit advertising have represented Arabs, Muslims, Arab Americans, and Muslim Americans during the War on Terror, this book demonstrates how more diverse representations do not in themselves solve the problem of racial stereotyping and how even seemingly positive images can produce meanings that can justify exclusion and inequality.
Author: Ellen Notbohm
Publisher: She Writes Press
Her brother’s letter touched a match to the wick of Annie’s doused dreams. Dream enough for her, to stroll the length of a town without the abortive glances, the stilted greetings, the wider berth given her on the sidewalk. “I could use some help out here,” he wrote. “What’s holding you to Iowa anyway?” Annie Rushton leaves behind an unsettling past to join her brother on his Montana homestead and make a determined fresh start. There, sparks fly when she tangles with Adam Fielding, a visionary businessman-farmer determined to make his own way and answer to no one. Neither is looking for a partner, but they give in to their undeniable chemistry. Annie and Adam’s marriage brims with astounding success and unanticipated passion, but their dream of having a child eludes them as a mysterious illness of mind and body plagues Annie’s pregnancies. Amidst deepening economic adversity, natural disaster, and the onset of world war, their personal struggles collide with the societal mores of the day. Annie’s shattering periods of black depression and violent outbursts exact a terrible price. The life the Fieldings have forged begins to unravel, and the only path ahead leads to unthinkable loss. Based on true events, this sweeping novel weaves a century-old story, timeless in its telling of love, heartbreak, healing, and redemption embodied in one woman’s tenacious quest for control over her own destiny in the face of devastating misfortune and social injustice.
Author: John Rechy
Publisher: Grove/Atlantic, Inc.
“[Rechy’s] tone rings absolutely true, is absolutely his own. . . . He tells the truth, and tells it with such passion that we are forced to share in the life he conveys. . . . This is a most humbling and liberating achievement.”—James Baldwin When John Rechy’s explosive first novel appeared in 1963, it marked a radical departure in fiction, and gave voice to a subculture that had never before been revealed with such acuity. It earned comparisons to Genet and Kerouac, even as Rechy was personally attacked by scandalized reviewers. Nevertheless, the book became an international bestseller, and fifty years later, it has become a classic. Bold and inventive in style, Rechy is unflinching in his portrayal of one hustling “youngman” and his search for self-knowledge within the neon-lit world of hustlers, drag queens, and the denizens of their world, as he moves from El Paso to Times Square, from Pershing Square to the French Quarter. Now including never-seen original marked galley pages and an interview with the author, Rechy’s portrait of the edges of America has lost none of its power to move and exhilarate.
Author: Vinton Rafe McCabe
Publisher: The Permanent Press
Based on Thomas Mann's classic, but treading new territory all its own, Death in Venice, California is a darkly comic tale of yearning, its rewards and its costs. Yearning is often considered a passive thing. But this ignores the molten core of havoc that lies within, making it the most hair-trigger of states. Death in Venice, California, takes the burning concept of yearning-as-motivator, jams it into the craw of a staid, entitled central character, and sets him loose, unmoored, in the modern world. Jameson Frame, an educated, even revered, middle-aged man of letters, flees the cold canyons of Manhattan for Venice, California, where he is soon surrounded by all that this Bedouin village has to offer: wiccans, vegans, transients, artists, drummers, muscle men, skateboarders, plastic surgeons, pornographers, tarot card readers and ghouls. And an arrestingly beautiful young man named Chase, the subject and object of his yearning. From there, Frame enters into a spiral of liberation, exultation, and, ultimately, destruction. And, as Frame explores his terra incognita, he takes his reader with him on his wild journey of passion, ecstasy, chaos, and consumption, all exploring the nature of self against the modern landscape, all set to the rhythm of the human heartbeat.
A Life in Pictures
Author: Chris Welch
Publisher: Carlton Books Limited
Category: Biography & Autobiography
A sumptuously photographed tribute to the spirit of reinvention that marked the iconic performing artist's career explores his groundbreaking music albums and living embodiments of vivid characters from Ziggy Stardust to the Thin White Duke to evaluate his ongoing cultural influence.
Author: Norma Stevens,Steven M. L. Aronson
Publisher: Spiegel & Grau
Category: Biography & Autobiography
An intimate biography of Richard Avedon, the legendary fashion and portrait photographer who “helped define America’s image of style, beauty and culture” (The New York Times), by his longtime collaborator and business partner Norma Stevens and award-winning author Steven M. L. Aronson. Richard Avedon was arguably the world’s most famous photographer—as artistically influential as he was commercially successful. Over six richly productive decades, he created landmark advertising campaigns, iconic fashion photographs (as the star photographer for Harper’s Bazaar and then Vogue), groundbreaking books, and unforgettable portraits of everyone who was anyone. He also went on the road to find and photograph remarkable uncelebrated faces, with an eye toward constructing a grand composite picture of America. Avedon dazzled even his most dazzling subjects. He possessed a mystique so unique it was itself a kind of genius—everyone fell under his spell. But the Richard Avedon the world saw was perhaps his greatest creation: he relentlessly curated his reputation and controlled his image, managing to remain, for all his exposure, among the most private of celebrities. No one knew him better than did Norma Stevens, who for thirty years was his business partner and closest confidant. In Avedon: Something Personal—equal parts memoir, biography, and oral history, including an intimate portrait of the legendary Avedon studio—Stevens and co-author Steven M. L. Aronson masterfully trace Avedon’s life from his birth to his death, in 2004, at the age of eighty-one, while at work in Texas for The New Yorker (whose first-ever staff photographer he had become in 1992). The book contains startlingly candid reminiscences by Mike Nichols, Calvin Klein, Claude Picasso, Renata Adler, Brooke Shields, David Remnick, Naomi Campbell, Twyla Tharp, Jerry Hall, Mikhail Baryshnikov, Bruce Weber, Cindy Crawford, Donatella Versace, Jann Wenner, and Isabella Rossellini, among dozens of others. Avedon: Something Personal is the confiding, compelling full story of a man who for half a century was an enormous influence on both high and popular culture, on both fashion and art—to this day he remains the only artist to have had not one but two retrospectives at the Metropolitan Museum of Art during his lifetime. Not unlike Richard Avedon’s own defining portraits, the book delivers the person beneath the surface, with all his contradictions and complexities, and in all his touching humanity.
How Gay Culture Liberated the Modern World
Author: Gregory Woods
Publisher: Yale University Press
Category: Social Science
In a hugely ambitious study which crosses continents, languages, and almost a century, Gregory Woods identifies the ways in which homosexuality has helped shape Western culture. Extending from the trials of Oscar Wilde to the gay liberation era, this book examines a period in which increased visibility made acceptance of homosexuality one of the measures of modernity. Woods shines a revealing light on the diverse, informal networks of gay people in the arts and other creative fields. Uneasily called “the Homintern” (an echo of Lenin’s “Comintern”) by those suspicious of an international homosexual conspiracy, such networks connected gay writers, actors, artists, musicians, dancers, filmmakers, politicians, and spies. While providing some defense against dominant heterosexual exclusion, the grouping brought solidarity, celebrated talent, and, in doing so, invigorated the majority culture. Woods introduces an enormous cast of gifted and extraordinary characters, most of them operating with surprising openness; but also explores such issues as artistic influence, the coping strategies of minorities, the hypocrisies of conservatism, and the effects of positive and negative discrimination. Traveling from Harlem in the 1910s to 1920s Paris, 1930s Berlin, 1950s New York and beyond, this sharply observed, warm-spirited book presents a surpassing portrait of twentieth-century gay culture and the men and women who both redefined themselves and changed history.
The Gay Writers Who Changed America
Author: Christopher Bram
Category: Literary Criticism
In the years following World War II a group of gay writers established themselves as major cultural figures in American life. Truman Capote, the enfant terrible, whose finely wrought fiction and nonfiction captured the nation's imagination. Gore Vidal, the wry, withering chronicler of politics, sex, and history. Tennessee Williams, whose powerful plays rocketed him to the top of the American theater. James Baldwin, the harrowingly perceptive novelist and social critic. Christopher Isherwood, the English novelist who became a thoroughly American novelist. And the exuberant Allen Ginsberg, whose poetry defied censorship and exploded minds. Together, their writing introduced America to gay experience and sensibility, and changed our literary culture. But the change was only beginning. A new generation of gay writers followed, taking more risks and writing about their sexuality more openly. Edward Albee brought his prickly iconoclasm to the American theater. Edmund White laid bare his own life in stylized, autobiographical works. Armistead Maupin wove a rich tapestry of the counterculture, queer and straight. Mart Crowley brought gay men's lives out of the closet and onto the stage. And Tony Kushner took them beyond the stage, to the center of American ideas. With authority and humor, Christopher Bram weaves these men's ambitions, affairs, feuds, loves, and appetites into a single sweeping narrative. Chronicling over fifty years of momentous change-from civil rights to Stonewall to AIDS and beyond-EMINENT OUTLAWS is an inspiring, illuminating tale: one that reveals how the lives of these men are crucial to understanding the social and cultural history of the American twentieth century.
Author: Michael Bronski
Publisher: Beacon Press
Winner of a 2012 Stonewall Book Award in nonfiction The first book to cover the entirety of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender history, from pre-1492 to the present. In the 1620s, Thomas Morton broke from Plymouth Colony and founded Merrymount, which celebrated same-sex desire, atheism, and interracial marriage. Transgender evangelist Jemima Wilkinson, in the early 1800s, changed her name to “Publick Universal Friend,” refused to use pronouns, fought for gender equality, and led her own congregation in upstate New York. In the mid-nineteenth century, internationally famous Shakespearean actor Charlotte Cushman led an openly lesbian life, including a well-publicized “female marriage.” And in the late 1920s, Augustus Granville Dill was fired by W. E. B. Du Bois from the NAACP’s magazine the Crisis after being arrested for a homosexual encounter. These are just a few moments of queer history that Michael Bronski highlights in this groundbreaking book. Intellectually dynamic and endlessly provocative, A Queer History of the United States is more than a “who’s who” of queer history: it is a book that radically challenges how we understand American history. Drawing upon primary documents, literature, and cultural histories, noted scholar and activist Michael Bronski charts the breadth of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender history, from 1492 to the 1990s, and has written a testament to how the LGBT experience has profoundly shaped our country, culture, and history. A Queer History of the United States abounds with startling examples of unknown or often ignored aspects of American history—the ineffectiveness of sodomy laws in the colonies, the prevalence of cross-dressing women soldiers in the Civil War, the impact of new technologies on LGBT life in the nineteenth century, and how rock music and popular culture were, in large part, responsible for the devastating backlash against gay rights in the late 1970s. Most striking, Bronski documents how, over centuries, various incarnations of social purity movements have consistently attempted to regulate all sexuality, including fantasies, masturbation, and queer sex. Resisting these efforts, same-sex desire flourished and helped make America what it is today. At heart, A Queer History of the United States is simply about American history. It is a book that will matter both to LGBT people and heterosexuals. This engrossing and revelatory history will make readers appreciate just how queer America really is. From the Hardcover edition.
Gripping Tales of Gay Erotic Fiction
Author: Austin Foxxe
Publisher: Warner Books (NY)
In the spirit of "Flesh and the Word" and the "Friction" series comes a sizzling, original gay erotica collection of more than 30 short stories by some of the most well-known names in the genre.
Gay Male Images in Popular Music of the Rock Era
Author: Wayne Studer
Gay Images in the Popular Music of the Rock Era In this pioneering book the author reviews songs/albums with gay themes issued during the rock era of the past thirty years. Included are such artists as: David Bowie, Elton John, Boy George, Little Richard, Village People, Bronski Beat, Pet Shop Boys and many more. Illustrated with over 30 photographs.
Choral Musicking for Social Justice
Author: Julia "Jules" Balén
Publisher: Rutgers University Press
A Queerly Joyful Noise examines how choral singing can be both personally transformative and politically impactful. As they blend their different voices to create something beautiful, LGBTIQ singers stand together and make themselves heard. Comparing queer choral performances to the uses of group singing within the civil rights and labor movements, Julia “Jules” Balén maps the relationship between different forms of oppression and strategic musical forms of resistance. She also explores the potential this queer communal space creates for mobilizing progressive social action. A proud member of numerous queer choruses, Balén draws from years of firsthand observations, archival research, and extensive interviews to reveal how queer chorus members feel shared vulnerability, collective strength, and even moments of ecstasy when performing. A Queerly Joyful Noise serves as a testament to the power of music, intimately depicting how participation in a queer chorus is more than a pastime, but a meaningful form of protest through celebration.
Author: Stephen Fried
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Category: Biography & Autobiography
At age seventeen, Gia Carangi was working the counter at her father's Philadelphia luncheonette, Hoagie City. Within a year, Gia was one of the top models of the late 1970's, gracing the covers of Cosmopolitan and Vogue, partying at New York's Studio 54 and the Mudd Club, and redefining the industry's standard of beauty. She was the darling of moguls and movie stars, royalty and rockers. Gia was also a girl in pain, desperate for her mother's approval—and a drug addict on a tragic slide toward oblivion, who started going directly from $10,000-a-day fashion shoots to the heroin shooting galleries on New York's Lower East Side. Finally blackballed from modeling, Gia entered a vastly different world on the streets of New york and Atlantic City, and later in a rehab clinic. At twenty-six, she became on of the first women in America to die of AIDS, a hospital welfare case visited only by rehab friends and what remained of her family. Drawing on hundreds of interviews with Gia's gamily, lovers, friends, and colleagues, Thing of Beauty creates a poignant portrait of an unforgettable character—and a powerful narrative about beauty and sexuality, fame and objectification, mothers and daughters, love and death.
Tales from a Sex Pistol
Author: Steve Jones
Publisher: Da Capo Press
Without the Sex Pistols there would be no punk. And without Steve Jones there would be no Sex Pistols. It was Steve who, with his schoolmate Paul Cook, formed the band that eventually went on to become the Sex Pistols and who was its original leader. As the world celebrates the 40th anniversary of punk--the influence and cultural significance of which is felt in music, fashion, and the visual arts to this day--Steve tells his story for the very first time. Steve Jones's modern Dickensian tale began in the street of Hammersmith and Shepherd's Bush, West London, where as a lonely, neglected boy living off his wits and petty thievery he was given purpose by the glam art rock of David Bowie and Roxy Music. He became one of the first generation of ragamuffin punks taken under the wings of Malcolm McLaren and Vivienne Westwood. In Lonely Boy, Steve describes the sadness of never having known his real dad, the abuse he suffered at the hands of his stepfather, and how his interest in music and fashion saved him from a potential life of crime spent in remand centers and prisons. He takes readers on his journey from the Kings Road of the early '70s through the years of the Sex Pistols, punk rock, and the recording of "Anarchy in the UK" and Never Mind the Bollocks. He recounts his infamous confrontation on Bill Grundy's Today program--the interview that ushered in the "Filth and the Fury" headlines that catapulted punk into the national consciousness. And he delves into the details of his self-imposed exile in New York and Los Angeles, where he battled alcohol, heroin, and sex addiction but eventually emerged to gain fresh acclaim as an actor and radio host. Lonely Boy is the story of an unlikely guitar hero who, with the Sex Pistols, transformed twentieth-century culture and kick-started a social revolution.