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Friday 04.28.17

Bon Appétit by Katy Perry

Oops... Katy Perry did it again!

It seems that once again Katy Perry’s latest single has been totally ignored. This time, she can blame the gorgeous weather in New York City. Though you’re probably outside taking a really long lunch — maybe having a chilled class of pinot, or if you’re really gay: a glass of rosé — I do want to draw your attention to Miss Perry’s latest because it’s definitely better than her previous.

 

“Chained to the Rhythm” came out last month (I think?) and did not perform well on the radio, or on the charts. The beat was catchy, and ushered in a new, albeit contrived, direction for the ever-changing brand that is Katy Perry. However, Bon Appétit (feat. Migos), which she released on this glorious spring Friday is way cuter and deserves a listen.

 

Earlier in the week, Perry fans tweeted photos of pies they baked after Katy tweeted that if you baked her a pie, “you may get a surprise.” I was confused and didn’t follow the Twitter trail because that is always exhausting, but nevertheless, the singer’s Martha Stewart endeavor ended up being another really odd marketing strategy (RE : the disco balls no one tended to) for another new single.

 

Bon Appétit (feat. Migos) is really reminiscent of that kind of feel good track I only associate with Nicki Minaj’s “Roman Reloaded.” This is the kind of pop music that you can listen to at any given moment, meaning that it really has got no deeper meaning than what I assume is money-making. …

Sunday 04.02.17

Eat: Daft Brunch – A French House & Disco Brunch Party

What a cute idea for a boozy Sunday brunch! You get to listen to Daft Punk and French disco, and here’s the best part, for the $10 ticket price, you also get two mimosas. That’s a pretty good deal. Where else can you get two mimosas for $10? Nowhere, that’s where! “DJs Jamie Antonelli (Nurvous Records) Salinger (Medium Rare / The Deep) and guests will be playing French Touch, Disco House and plenty of Daft Punk. Photos by Nicky Digital. Visuals by Funk Taxi. "Food will be available throughout the event. Come eat, drink and dance with us!” They also have some “Bottomless Brunch packages still available” so start that group text ASAP and get your weekend brunch plans in order, K?

$10 in advance, 12:00pm- 8:00pm, Schimanski, 54 N.11th St. BROOKLYN, NY.

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Tuesday 03.28.17

PWR BTTM – ‘Answer My Text’

PWR BTTM's got another millennial anthem under their belt

Much to the queer universe’s delight, PWR BTTM released a new music video this morning! ‘Answer My Text‘ sticks to the band’s declarative and unapologetic ethos with the chorus’ central lyric stating “answer my text, you dick!” (If that’s not a mood, I don’t know what is).

 

The single, which is off of their forthcoming sophomore album ‘Pageant’ follows the band’s D.I.Y. formula of simplistic chord progressions matched with lyrics that are not only relatable to the band’s variety of fans, but also do a bit more for listeners by revealing Liv Bruce and Ben Hopkin’s own autobiographical struggles. The twosome have approached music-making with a pedestrian skill set, but their willingness to be vulnerable and vocal about queer identity has propelled them into intersectional crusaders.

 

Just last week I was retelling a friend about the first time I saw PWR BTTM. They were playing at Legion Bar in Brooklyn with Diet Cig who were also newcomers on the scene. I don’t even remember when their set started, and I didn’t even know who they were really, but their now notorious banter blew my mind. I had never seen two people be so obviously queer on stage at a D.I.Y. show.

 

It’s been a pleasure to watch them grow into globally recognized musicians, and ‘Answer My Text‘ is another addition to PWR BTTM’s radical image making. Bruce is as darling as ever in a bubblegum pink bedroom, and they are even more intriguing with neon-blue lipstick paired with a pink gown. …

Wednesday 03.01.17

Remy Ma Diss Track – ‘Shether’

Nicki Minaj and Remy Ma have had a long standing beef that goes back way before Remy was sent to prison six years ago. Not that she’s out, Nicki has been throwing shade on Instagram about Remy’s recent single sales, which sent Remy to the studio to respond with a blistering diss track. If you haven’t heard it you really need to, it’s brutal. In ‘Shether’ Remy really doesn’t hold back.

 

Here’s a couple of lines that deserve to be written out: “Talkin’ about bringin’ knives to a fight with guns, When the only shot you ever took was in your buns, And I saw Meek at All-Star, he told me your ass dropped, He couldn’t fuck you for three months, Because your ass dropped, Now I don’t think y’all understand how bad her ass got, The implants that she had put in her ass popped” Or how about this one: “Been through mad crews, you disloyal hoochie, Now all of a sudden you back with Drake and Tunechi? After he said you sucked his dick, you back with Gucci? Who next: Puff, Deb, or Fendi? You a A-list groupie.” And finally: “You claimed you never fucked Drake, Now that’s where you took me, You fucked the whole Empire — who you tryin’ to be, Cookie?”

 

I really wasn’t expecting her response to be this vicious. But she went there. And now all we have to do is what for Nicki’s response. The expectations are sky high Black Barbie! …

Thursday 12.15.16

Listen: Noname – Telefone

24-year-old rapper Noname hasn’t relied on dancing half-naked in music videos to make a career for herself. Over the last few years she has worked hard at building a reputation as someone with real talent and real ambitions to be taken seriously in the music biz. Raised in Bronzeville, Chicago, Noname (whose real name is Fatimah Warner) started out performing slam poetry in 2010. In 2013 she performed on Chance the Rapper’s wonderful release ‘Acid Rap’ and in August released her brilliant debut mixtape ‘Telefone.’ Taking a page from two of 2016’s standout albums — Kendrick’s ‘Untitled’ and Chance’s ‘Coloring Book’ — Telefone is a jazzy, breezy mitape that deals with a number of heavy subjects like police brutality and growing up in the streets of Chicago. Noname planned the album for 3 years before finally recording it in June of this 2016 in Los Angeles. In some ways Noname’s music reminds me of Issa Rae’s HBO show Insecure. While Noname certainly deals with heavy subjects in her lyrics, her mixtape is super enjoyable. I look forward to seeing what she gets up to next!

Available everywhere.

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Thursday 11.24.16

Book: Somebody to Love: The Life, Death, and Legacy of Freddie Mercury

It’s Thanksgiving, and you know what I am thankful for? Gay people! Thank god for all the talented queers who have made this world one worth living in. There’s too many to list in this short post, so let’s just focus on one very talented queen today: Freddie Mercury. The incredibly charismatic, and unique lead singer of the band Queen changed the musical landscape for the better. Somebody To Love is a new biography of Mr. Mercury that not only tells the story of the singer’s stratospheric rise to fame, but also very cleverly weaves in a history of the disease that ultimately killed him. Freddie died of AIDS complications in 1991. At the time he was one of the highest-profile people to die from the disease, which is why his life’s story is ineluctably tied to it. The authors of the book, Matt Richards and Mark Langthorne, hope that Freddie’s story “sheds light on the darkest times that so many lived and died through.” While doing this the book also spends plenty of time exploring all the light and beauty associated with Queen’s brilliant contribution to music. There’s plenty of juicy details about Freddie’s relationships, not just with men, but also with women. Freddie never officially came out of the closet, which is understandable considering he lived in the 70’s and 80’s and Queen was a very mainstream band. Regardless, Freddie is still remembered as a queer icon and pioneer. And I’ll continue to be thankful that we had him, even if it was for only a brief time.

Available now

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Tuesday 11.15.16

MUSIC DRIVEN: These Cocksucking Tears

Now that Beyonce has managed to defy all odds and tricked gay people into being interested in country music, it’s important that we know our cultural history within the genre. Unfortunately due to the conservative politics of country music’s mainstream markets, country singers have only started coming out of the closet as recently as 2010. As slow as the progress might seem, none of it would be possible without Patrick Haggerty, aka Lavender Country, who blazed the trail back in the 1970s. Haggerty recorded Lavender Country’s self-titled album in 1973, thereby becoming the first openly gay country star.

 

Lavender Country sold all one thousand copies of the record that were issued, but then more or less vanished from popular culture. Patrick, a whip-smart Marxist, ran a couple of relatively successful political campaigns, but could never get a career off the ground. He eventually returned to country music and began to make a living off of singing “old songs to old people,” namely performing country classics in retirement homes.

 

Thanks to Youtube, one of Lavender Country’s most powerful and lyrically compelling songs, “Cryin’ These Cocksucking Tears,” has since garnered a resurgence of attention to the band. The record label Paradise of Bachelors reissued the album in 2014 which in turn led to more press coverage, a tour, and now a short documentary about Patrick’s life. “These Cocksucking Tears” was part of a short film festival featured at Nitehawk in New York City. …

Friday 11.11.16

TINASHE’S NIGHTRIDE

I fell for Tinashe when I saw the Boss music video. I mean, this girl was eighteen, wrote a vicious song, taught herself to produce her own music, then self-directed its video. The vision and its execution left an impression. In one red-light setting, with a bright curly lion’s mane of hair, she sidles against an oversized county fair teddy bear, croons up over its head, then playfully decapitates it. And rips out its stuffing. It’s wild. Since then, she’s stayed focused, continually maturing her style.

 

Tinashe is twenty-three now and no longer needs the heels or hair or glam to prove that she’s grown. Nightride, released last Friday at midnight, is not child’s play. She came for every wig on this bi-coastal mess we call America. Released with a music video statement of purpose, Nightride is the accompaniment and precursor to Joyride, her upcoming sophomore album.

 

Her position relative to popular music in late 2016 is somewhere between Frank Ocean and Ariana Grande. Like Frank, Tinashe’s been roiling in music industry purgatory, her sophomore album suffering massive delays, her label increasingly hapless at managing her career. Both Nightride and Blonde are dark and pained, isolated (Nightride has zero features), but animated by the singer’s devotional faith in love and self-ownership. Both albums suit these suddenly darker days especially well. Like Ariana’s interstellar pop, Tinashe’s vocals pair dense production with an agile and winking sensibility. But Tinashe’s a more genuinely dangerous woman who belts out a bit more sparingly. …

Saturday 11.05.16

MUSIC: Roisin Murphy Afternoon Tea Dance

We interviewed Roisin Murphy for the last issue of GAYLETTER Magazine. I got to speak with her over the phone, which was an absolute thrill, considering what a fan I am of her music. I was equally excited to learn that she is performing in NYC this week, but then bummed when I learned that tickets are sold out. As a consolation we should all head to C’mon Everybody on Saturday night. DJs Sean Hanna and Tad Haes will be spinning their “favorite Roisin songs” all night long in celebration of Roisin’s return to New York City after 8 years. There’s no guarantee that she’ll show up, but it would be a lovely surprise if she did. For all of you who are unfamiliar with the Irish singer/songwriter we suggest you pick up a copy of issue 5 of our magazine and learn some more about the talented Ms Murphy. She’s a great talker. Or you could just google her, google also works.

Free, 4:00-10:00PM, C'Mon Everybody , 325 Franklin Ave. Brooklyn, NY.

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Thursday 10.06.16

MUSIC: Amber Martin’s ‘A.M. Gold’

Amber Martin is a dear friend to GAYLETTER. We have written about her performances at Joe’s Pub and with Nath Ann Carrera as part of Witch Camp. Amber even performed as Reba McEntire at one of our Pride Balls. She is immensely talented and super sweet. She reached out to us recently to inform us about the release of her new album, A.M. Gold, at Joe’s Pub this Thursday night (October 6). The album features “special guests Jake Shears and Kate Bornstein, as well as NYC players Claudia Chopek, Nath Ann Carrera, Paul Leschen and Brett Every. Also, two of the songs will be featured in John Cameron Mitchell’s forthcoming movie, How To Talk To Girls At Parties, with Nicole Kidman and Elle Fanning. (“Bermuda” and “Bright Lights, Long Shadows”)". Thursday night is your first chance to hear the new album. Considering the talented people involved in it, I’m sure it’ll be a night filled with famous faces and unforgettable performances. Amber never disappoints!

$18, 9:00PM, Joe’s Pub, The Public Theater, 425 Lafayette St. NY, NY.

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