B Best

What’s the first thing you think of when you hear the words, “Tin roof, rusted!”? If you answered “Love Shack” by the B-52s then pat yourself on the back. That 1989 single, the biggest hit of the B-52’s career, finally earned the group the widespread mainstream attention it justly deserved. It was also considered a comeback for the band from Athens, Georgia, following the devastating loss of co-founding member Ricky Wilson. Those in the know who had been following the B-52s since the band’s self-titled 1979 debut album (featuring the single “Rock Lobster”) were free to gloat as their friends […]

Divas by the Dozen

There aren’t a lot of musicians who have a backstory as fascinating as Jenny Lewis’s. A child actress who appeared in the camp/cult flick Troop Beverly Hills (alongside Shelly Long!) and the CBS series Brooklyn Bridge (alongside Marion Ross!), she went on to form the indie pop band Rilo Kiley. Her solo albums, in particular the amazing The Voyager (from 2014) and her new one On The Line (WB) put her in league with brilliant songwriters such as Aimee Mann. On The Line feels like an intentional companion piece to The Voyager and Lewis’s ongoing development as a songwriter of […]

Timeless Teen

Imperial Teen delivers on the promise of the title of the band’s new studio album Now We Are Timeless (Merge), its first in seven years and its sixth overall. The aptly named second track, “We Do What We Do Best,” almost says it all when it comes to the ten tracks on the album. There are synthesizers, danceable beats, a variety of vocal harmonies, and a blend of humorous and serious messages. The current running through the irresistible opener “I Think That’s Everything” is au courant. “Walkaway” arrives on a sexy dance-pop strut, while “Parade” marches boldly forward, and “Somebody […]

Big Blasts from the Past

Known for his unique comedic style and innovative TV shows, Ernie Kovacs’ influence lived on long after his untimely death at 42 following an automobile accident in 1962. To commemorate the Kovacs centenary, Kovacs’ Grammy-nominated album has been reissued on CD for the first time in an expanded version as The Ernie Kovacs Album: Centennial Edition (Ominvore), featuring six bonus tracks. A compilation consisting of “bits and pieces of Kovacs’ World of Kraziness,” the album functions as both a worthwhile introduction for newcomers and a pleasant reminder for those already familiar with Kovacs’ substantial talents. As innovative and influential artists […]

After Stonewall Reading List

Stonewall 50 celebrations may have come and gone, but that doesn’t mean that there isn’t an abundance of good LGBTQ reading to be found to take you through the summer and into the fall. All titles are out now unless otherwise indicated Poetry pages – According to gay poet Aaron Smith In The Book of Daniel (University of Pittsburgh Press, 2019), he needs his Frank O’Hara and Denise Duhamel (among other poets), and he certainly gets them in this 47 poem collection that merges pop culture references and sensibility with his own personal and political struggles for an intoxicating concoction. […]

More Than 50 Shades

The road to Bravo’s Project Runway hasn’t been as glamorous as you might think for fan favorite contestant Sebastian Grey. He gave up a career in Colombia and arrived in the US, where he worked as a housekeeper in a hotel. Something good did come of that – it’s where he met his husband Matthew. Additionally, he applied to compete on “Project Runway,” where his sewing skills, solid work ethic, and talent landed him a spot in the final four. Fort Lauderdale resident Grey was kind enough to answer a few questions in advance of the Season 17 finale. Gregg […]

Country Club

Grammy-winning 21st century country diva Kacey Musgraves has forever changed the sound of country music. Before Musgraves, it was Rosanne Cash (yes, daughter of Johnny) who was putting in the hours of hard work to do so. Forty years into her recording career, Cash continues to dazzle us with her 13th album She Remembers Everything (Blue Note). The remarkable thing about the record is the way that she succeeds in offering something for everyone. Songs such as “The Only Thing Worth Fighting For,” “Not Many Miles To Go,” and “The Undiscovered Country” are classic Cash, certain to bring smiles of […]

Team Player

The importance of queercore band Team Dresch cannot be overstated.  The all-female Portland band, known for its quest for inclusivity, as well as acceptance of every gender and sexuality, debuted around the same time as the similarly feminist-minded Riot Grrrl scene that was also exploding in the Pacific Northwest. Along with contemporaries such as Sleater-Kinney, Tribe 8, Bikini Kill, and Heavens to Betsy, Team Dresch also offered listeners an alternative to the testosterone-fueled sound of the straight male-dominated grunge sound. To commemorate the anniversary of the release of Team Dresch’s highly regarded albums Personal Best and Captain My Captain, both […]

A Wong Time Ago

First the bad news. Almost 25 years after its theatrical release, To Wong Foo, Thanks For Everything, Julie Newmar (Universal / Shout Select), newly reissued on Blu-ray, doesn’t hold up so well. While the concept for the screenplay by Douglas Carter Beane supposedly predates the superior The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert, To Wong Foo suffers by comparison. That said, there are still plenty of reasons to take this life-changing cross-country journey with Vida (the late Patrick Swayze), Noxeema (Wesley Snipes), and Chi-Chi (John Leguizamo). One reason alone happens in the first few minutes of To Wong Foo, […]

Being Mouse

A recent internet meme featured Harry Potter series author J.K. Rowling bemoaning the difficulty of killing off so many characters, with Game of Thrones series author George R.R. Martin calling her “adorable” in response. Gay writer Armistead Maupin has more in common with Rowling and Martin than you might expect. Maupin, like Rowling and Martin, is the author of a popular book series. In Maupin’s case, it’s the beloved queer Tales of The City sequence, which began in 1978 and concluded in 2014. As in the case of Rowling and Martin, Maupin populated his books with a wide assortment of […]