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Barney Frank Set to Retire by Lucas Witherspoon
n November 28, 2011, Barney Frank announced his retirement from Congress, to begin at the conclusion of his term in 2013. Throughout his decades-long tenure, Frank established himself as a quick-witted liberal powerhouse, which secured him a congressional seat from 1980 until the present. Frank is especially notable because he was the first openly gay member of Congress, and is widely considered America’s most powerful gay politician. Frank has obviously had his share of scandals, both political and personal, which were only intensified by the fact that he has been unabashed in his sexuality. It’s well known that in 1985, Frank hired Steve Gobie, a male prostitute, for sex, which eventually resulted in a friendship, and led to Frank’s hiring of Gobie as an aide, driver, and housekeeper, which Frank paid for with personal funds. However, once it was brought to Frank’s attention that Gobie was still escorting out of Frank’s apartment, he ended the relationship. Gobie later tried to sell and profit from the story, with his attempts proving to be largely unsuccessful. Ironically, it was Larry Craig, who was arrested in 2007 for trying to solicit gay sex in an airport bathroom, that led the witch hunt to censure and expel Frank, though Frank got away with only a reprimand, as it was proven he had no knowledge of or involvement in Gobie’s extracurricular activities. As a ranking member of the Financial Services Committee with personal and financial ties to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, he was also heavily criticized for his part in the 2008 economic crisis. Politics aside, his larger legacy will be that he was the first openly gay congressman at a time when being openly gay was not nearly as acceptable as it is today, yet he
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was continuously reelected by huge margins. Liberal or not, his openness took bravado, and that fact cannot be discounted. There’s no doubt he was on the receiving end (no pun intended) of a lot of criticism, not for his politics, but for his sexuality, even being called a “fag” by fellow congressmen. He literally defied the odds at a time when being openly homosexual was not something a majority of people in America understood or approved of. In my mind, his political legacy will not be about whether he was a liberal or conservative, but rather that he paved the way for many other gay people who could finally see that being gay does not mean you have to be oppressed.
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The Bottom Line
My Ghost of Christmas Past
by Joseph Brownell
hroughout my late teens and early 20’s, I avoided my family during the holidays. Sgt. Mom’s rigorous holiday schedule made Christmas seem more like boot camp than a joyous occasion and I can count on one hand the number of conversations I had with my dad during that time. Instead, I usually spent the holidays in a bar with like-minded people, desperate to mask my loneliness with contempt for my parents. Though not all of my holidays were lonely, the apostasy of my adolescence led to more holes than it filled. My predilection for self-reflection has made the Charles Dickens’ classic, A Christmas Carol, a holiday favorite of mine. Whether it’s Mickey and Scrooge McDuck, The Muppets and Michael Caine or even the divine Vanessa Williams in A Diva’s Christmas Carol, the thought of being visited by the Ghosts of Christmas Past, Present and Yet to Come has always fascinated me. My Ghost of Christmas Past would likely be some forgotten trick and my journey into the past would likely land me in 2002 (or at least I’d like it to). It was a snowy Christmas Eve in Savannah, GAthe kind of snow that doesn’t fall from the sky. Around last call someone suggested Christmas in Charleston, South Carolina. A friend of a friend booked an employee rate at
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some hotel and in the middle of the night we fueled up and made our way to Charleston listening to Kid Rock and Sheryl Crow’s Picture the entire way. The sun came up, we went down and woke up early that afternoon wondering just why the hell we decided to go to Charleston and what the hell we were going to do now that we were there. Maid in Manhattan (oh J.Lo) and triple cheeseburger platters at the Huddle House turned out to be one of the answers; I’m still searching for the other. While not the greatest reflection of the Christmas Spirit, these holiday celebrations were the ones I identified with for a large part of my 20’s.They say you have to know where you’ve been to see where you’re going; maybe that’s the key to enjoying Christmas Present. Bring on the ghosts, Jacob Marley.
20 BIG years T
by Maximillian Cornwell
he Heretic is the not so quiet bar off of Cheshire Bridge, which has seen Atlanta grow and change over the course of two decades. The infamous dance floor has been graced by some of the biggest names in nightlife, and has entertained audiences for 20 years. As bars have come and gone in the city of Atlanta, Heretic has found a secret formula to success, and their customers are as loyal as any. While there have been good times and bad, the club is thriving better then ever as they ready for another two decades of memories. We all have experienced the magic of Heretic, whether it is from a drink at the bar with their witty bartenders, to the beach parties over the summer, to flirting with the sexy cub in his leather harness, the owners Bev Cook and Ray Collins have listened to their customers and brought memorable experiences to most of Atlanta. I had a chance to sneak in a small chat with Bev Cook and General Manager Alan Collins to talk about their impact on the community, how the community has supported them, and their big plans to celebrate the achievement of 20 years in business.
Heretic has been an Atlanta institution for 2 decades, how do you feel to hit this milestone?
Bev Cook: I never thought I would be open for 20 years. It’s amazes me that the city has supported us for this long. We are so grateful to community and look forward to serving you for another 20 years.
Bev, you were the original owner and then Ray came in a few years after. Bev, can you recall the opening night and the feelings you were experiencing back then? Did you imagine being here 20 years later?
Bev: Opening night was very exciting. At the time we were the first men’s dance club on Cheshire Bridge. Everything was concentrated in Midtown so opening a bar so far away from 20 | davidatlanta
Midtown was a huge risk. I was fearful they wouldn’t come to Cheshire Bridge, but they did and we are so grateful.
What professions were you in before opening Heretic? What made you decide to get into bar ownership?
Bev: I came to Atlanta as a single Acoustic Guitar/Vocalist act performing in clubs. In 1986 I was hired at Backstreet to perform and became friends with the owner. At the time, the only part of Backstreet that was open was the rooftop lounge, and I was hired to manage the Club based on my previous management experience. During that time, the Vara family (owners of Backstreet) decided to open the rest of the club. In 1987 Backstreet complex as most remember it, reopened. I worked there till 1990 when I decided I wanted to open my own club.
Owning a business is like a marriage, and you have ups and downs. What were some of the hardest problems the bar has faced and overcome?
Alan: Challenges with the City and alcohol serving times. This city has so much potential but the previous administration forced many establishments to close. Hopefully the current administration will bring back nightlife to where an “international” city should be.
How has the community supported you through the years?
Alan: The community has been incredible, coming in week after week, year after year. It’s amazing, how many people have been coming for 20 years, how many couples who come to me and tell me they met at The Heretic and are still together. And I love talking to the “youngsters” who are first timers at the ‘tic. How they couldn’t wait till they turned 21 so they could come. It’s just a great feeling to know you were a part of so many milestones in people’s lives.
Heretic has done a great deal for charity over the years, can you give us an idea how much money the bar has donated over 20
s of REVELRY years? What organizations are near and dear to you both?
Alan: If I had to guess, I would say well over $250K! Some of our favorite charities have been Jerusalem House, Aid Atlanta, Joining Hearts, Katrina victims, CHRIS KIDS, Armorettes. We are strong believers in giving back to the community. We have never forgotten who pays our bills, (our customers) and will continue to support local charities as long as our doors are open.
You have recently forged a relationship with the former bar owners of 3-Legged Cowboy, and brought back a 3-Legged Cowboy theme night. How did this come about and how has reception been?
Alan: The former owners of 3Legged Cowboy, Deana Collins and Sheila Whitehead have been dear friends of ours for years. After they sadly closed their doors in May of this year, there was a void in the community. We were looking to change our Thursday night line up and thought a country night would be fun but we were not going to do it without the blessing of Deana and Sheila. So, we called them up and the next thing we knew we were doing 3 Legged Cowboy nights. The reception has been unbelievable. The country community is such a great tight knit group and we are so happy to provide them with a fun environment to dance.
So, do you know how to line dance yet?
Alan: [laughter] I’m an old school two-stepper line dancer, but hadn’t done it in 15 years. So, yes, I know how but the dances have gotten a lot more complicated. I’m taking lessons here and there so hopefully will catch up to the youngsters.
The Atlanta scene has changed drastically over the years, and you have seen many bars and clubs come and go. How has Heretic evolved with the community? Do you think people go out for different reasons now then 15-20 years ago?
Alan: Yes, we have evolved quite a bit over the years. Back in the day, we had a very specific clientele. Would have never considered paying
DJ Joe Gauthreaux [LA] thousands of dollars for a guest DJ, and pretty much only had to open our doors to be successful. Today we are constantly changing. Making improvements, bringing in new nights but most importantly listening to our customers to see what they want. It’s pretty much a numbers game, you might try 10 different ideas for a night and if you’re lucky 1 will stick. But the key is to listen to your customers, find out what they want and make it happen.
Tell us about your 20th anniversary festivities, what do you have going on to celebrate?
Alan: In years past we have only had a one-night celebration when it came to the anniversary party. 20 being such a milestone, we decided to make it a weekend long celebration. The party starts off on Friday with Atlanta favorite, DJ Lydia Prim, Saturday we are bringing in International DJ/Producer DJ Joe Gauthreaux (LA) and the final event is the Monday Night Invitation Only Anniversary/Christmas Party 8-10pm. There will be plenty of food/beverages and, oh yeah, a CHOCALATE FOUNTAIN! We just received confirmation from the North Pole, Santa will be stopping by to visit. 22 | davidatlanta
“The party starts off on Friday with Atlanta favorite, DJ Lydia Prim, Saturday we are bringing in International DJ/Producer DJ Joe Gauthreaux (LA) and the final event is the Monday Night Invitation Only Anniversary & Christmas Party 8-10pm. There will be plenty of food/beverages and, oh yeah, a CHOCOLATE FOUNTAIN! We just received confirmation from the North Pole, Santa will be stopping by to visit.” Where do you see Heretic in 5 years? What is in the cards for the club in the future?
Alan: 5 years from now, I am confident, The Heretic will still be around. We’ve served our community for 20 years and we are just getting started. We have lots of exciting changes in the works! I can’t wait to see what the future holds.
On a parting note, anything you want to say directly to our readers who love and support your establishment?
Alan & Bev: Yes, THANK YOU! Without our loyal customers we would not exist. It’s as simple as that. It’s our job to provide Atlanta with a safe, exciting environment and we are honored to be part of this community. For more information on the 20th anniversary events at Heretic, as well as to stay up to date on future parties and events, please visit their website at www.hereticatlanta.com. Heretic is a 21+ establishment, and is located at 2069 Cheshire Bridge Road 30324.
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Ultimate Guide to Gay Gift Giving
by Mikey Rox
hat do you get a gay who has everything? Take your pick from these ideas, perfect for LGBT homebodies, adventurers, activists and more.
Cloud 9 Living
Reduce your carbon footprint this holiday season. The thoughtful and extremely fun activities offered by Cloud 9 Living eliminate the need to stand in line at a store and gives recipients the gift of a consumable experience – like a hot-air balloon ride or a snow-tubing adventure – that reduces landfill and time waste; there won’t be any packaging to toss out or the need to return a tangible item that nobody wanted in the first place. An out-of-thebox – literally – gift idea for outdoor lovers and adventurers everywhere. (Pricing varies; www. cloud9living.com)
Computer Apparel Laptop Sleeve
American Apparel is the undisputed champ when it comes to too-tight V-necks in colors you’ve never seen before, but when you want a coordinating top for your laptop, Computer Apparel has the market on lock. Handcrafted and machine washable, the Original V_Neck Sleeve is made from high-quality fabric and features thermal-knit padding for a tablet and a 13-, 15- or 17-inch laptop, and convenient pockets to stow chargers, documents, and phones or MP3 players. While is the Original V_Neck is, by nature, fashion-forward, it also adds a level of unexpected security: Your sleeve will thwart would-be computer thieves – unless, of course, they also have a cotton fetish. ($59.99; computer-apparel.com)
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Atlanta Gay Gifting
Never fear, next week David Magazine brings you a slew of gay gifts you can find right here, in Atlanta shops! Got a suggestion? Email firstname.lastname@example.org
Combining the portability of a point-and-shoot with the interchangeable lenses of a DLSR, the Nikon 1 introduces a new way to capture photos and high-def video. A touch of the shutter button instantly captures a high-quality image while simultaneously recording Full HD 1080p movies, and the exciting new Motion Snapshot mode preserves fleeting moments like never before with a combination of moving and still images, bringing memories to life. Wonder if spokesman Ashton Kutcher tested his out that night in San Diego. ($650; nikonusa.com)
Pig of the Month
Perhaps we chose this because of its tongue-incheek approach to pork, but we can honestly vouch for its quality, too. Rib enthusiasts will start salivating the moment they receive this finger-licking gift that offers customizable packages that can include up to 10 slabs of six styles of ribs, including Memphis Baby Back, Key West Citrus, Carolina Mustard, Carolina Red, Hawaiian, and Texas – along with bottles of sauce that complement each style. Sides and desserts – like slow-roasted baked beans red velvet cake – make the gift a hearty meal. ($15 and up; pigofthemonth.com)
In a touch-screen world, winter can throw us for a loop. Ever tried to keep your hands warm and text at the same time? It’s impossible – unless you have specially designed gloves. Available in an array of styles – like ragg wool, soft shell, fleece and leather – Freehands offers protection for your fingers and hands against the elements while allowing you to type away thanks to removable or padded tips compatible with touch technology. ($18-$75; www.freehands.com)
The perfect holiday party is only as good as the spirits the shirtless mixologists serve. This year, stock your bar with the best of the best. A Swedish liquor crafted with pure spring water and a freeze-filtration process, Rokk Vodka is chilled to subzero temperatures and charcoal filtered. Rokk is also a proud supporter of LGBT initiatives, most recently sponsoring the 22nd Annual GLAAD Media Awards. ($12.99; rokkvodka.com)
Archangel Academy Series
Consider this series of supernatural novels “Twilight” for the homo set. Michael Howard and Ronan Glynn-Rowley meet at Archangel Academy, an all-boys school in Eden, a rural town in northwestern England. The boys are outcasts – Michael for being gay; Ronan for being a hybrid vampire. When Ronan turns Michael into a vampire without his consent, both are drawn into a dangerous and sexy new world full of secrets. Two books of three, “Unnatural” and “Unwelcome,” are available now; the third, “Unafraid,” will be released in early 2012. ($9.95; kensingtonbooks.com)
Mikey Rox is an award-winning journalist and blogger who lives in New York City with his husband and their two dogs. Follow him on Twitter @mikeyrox.
Java and agave marry in Patron XO Café’s blend of premium tequila and coffee essence to create an exquisite flavor that’s perfect in cocktails and delicious on desserts. ($24.99; patrongift.com) Ultra-premium and artfully crafted, Van Gogh Blue Triple Wheat Vodka is a smooth and inviting blend of premium European wheat sourced from Holland, Germany, and France. Its distillery, recently renovated under the supervision of the Holland Monument Society, was given “Royal Appointment” in 2005 by Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands. Totally enough reason to wear your tiara. ($29.99; vangoghvodka.com) You’ll want to wait until the party bois say goodbye to uncap Stoli Elit, an ultra-premium, velvety smooth vodka ranked as The Best Tasting Vodka in the World by The Beverage Tasting Institute. It’s best shared with that special someone. ($59.99; elitbystoli.com) It’s Maker’s Mark, but with a lot more body. Maker’s 46, a full-flavored addition to the line, is bigger and bolder thanks to the addition of seared French oak staves. (makersmark.com) Unless you plan to serve your bevs straight (as if), you’ll need mixers. Q Tonic and Q Ginger are the safest bet this season – especially for those watching their weight. The Tonic contains just 24 calories per serving with 7 grams of carbs, while the Ginger has 60 calories and 15 grams of carbs. Compared to other leading national brands, Q is in a class of its own. (qtonic.com)
Make that long flight to Ibiza a bit more bearable with Zip-It, a two-player crossword race game that can be played anytime, anywhere in as little as 20 seconds. From the makers of Bananagrams, Zip-It features 24 high-quality letter cubes packaged in a unique cloth, zippered pouch that stores easily in your carry-on or day bag. ($14.95; bananagrams.com)
Just Dance 3
The booty-shaking sensation is back just in time for the holidays. Just Dance 3 – available for Wii, Kinect for Xbox 360, and PlayStation Move – gets the party started with more than 45 top hits, including LMFAO’s “Party Rock Anthem,” “Forget You” by Cee-Lo Green, the Scissor Sisters’ “I Don’t Feel Like Dancing” and more. Game highlights include modes such as Just Sweat It Out, with workout plans and playlists to help you stay fit, and Dance Crew, with up to four concurrent dance routines so even more people can join in on the fun. ($39.99: gamestop.com)
They say that heat escapes the head faster than any other part of the body, which is why it’s good advice to wrap it up when the weather outside of frightful. Nobis – whose Fall 2011 Collection includes beanies, berets, caps and hats (there’s a difference, y’all) for everyone on your list – is the epitome of winter luxury featuring soft, detailed, handmade pieces on the cutting edge of style and comfort. ($30-$98; nobis.ca)
Still don’t know what to buy your bestie? Enter Wantful, an online gift service that allows you to assemble a wish list based on the holiday you’re celebrating and other personal information about the gift recipient, including his or her age and gender, your relationship to that person, in what type of dwelling they live, and some of their favorite activities. Wantful will cultivate a list of gift recommendations using your answers, along with the amount of money you’d like to spend. Once you click “Customize and Checkout,” Wantful will send a printed catalog to the recipient displaying the items specifically chosen by you for them. Santa wishes he had it so simple. (Pricing varies; wantful.com)
Be careful what questions you pluck from the pack with this exciting, multiplayer Q&A game – you might uncover a secret you never wanted to know. One of the best-selling games on the market, players can choose from more than 1,000 questions designed to spark laughter and discussions, and create lasting memories between friends, family and uncover lovers. ($24.99; www.familyandpartygames.com)
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Ruby Red’s Anniversary Bingo @ Mellow Mushroom! Come celebrate the 1 YEAR anniversary of Birdcage Bingo at Mellow Mushroom! The special occasion will include a champagne toast and they will be giving away their biggest prizes ever. The Armorettes are also back to help support, and all money raised will go towards their PWA fund! Starts at 8pm, and located at the Mellow Mushroom next to Trader Joes in Midtown Promenade. 931 Monroe Drive Ste A104.
The Atlanta Ballet Performs The Nutcracker @ The Fox Theatre!
BE(A)STIE by Corian Ellisor and Alex Abarca @ Beacon Hill Theatre in Decatur The personal and hilarious story of their 8-year friendship in the competitive, often adversarial world of professional dance, with original songs by Abarca and Ellisor, and music by the Beastie Boys, Francesco Tristano, and Panda Bear. Door tix $10-15; pre-sale tix $8-12: http:// www.brownpapertickets.com/ event/209481 Location: 410 W. Trinity Place, Decatur GA 30031
Atlanta Ballet’s Nutcracker returns to the Fox Theatre for an enchanted evening the whole family will enjoy. It’s a fun-filled magical adventure that has continued to thrill audiences for more than 50 years! Come out for an Atlanta tradition and a holiday spectacle. For tickets and show times, visit www.foxtheatre.org.
Dissipated Desperation @ Pedini Atlanta! Looking for a night of art and fun? Join local artist, Patrick Hanson, as he debuts his new show, “Dissipated Desperation”. The works are contemporary abstract paintings with many layers and textures, and will be on display until January 10th. Doors open at 7pm, with light Hors d’oeuvres and beverages being served. For more, visit www.pediniatlanta.com.
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Splatter Cinema presents The Shining @ The Plaza Theatre! The Plaza Theatre is an Atlanta staple, famous for its screenings and Rocky Horror Shows. Come out to watch The Shining at the non-profit theatre and support one of Atlanta’s most historic icons. The movie is not for the faint of heart, but is great with a group of friends. For more information visit www.plazaatlanta.com, show starts at 9pm.
CNN LGBT Meeting @ Grady High School w/ Soledad O’Brien!
13 Toy Drive Party @ The Hideaway!
CNN will be talking with a panel of experts as The last day of Hideaway’s toy drive they discuss issues facing the gay community. wraps up with Miss Lauren on her Has more acceptance led to more openness? The new Craps table, panel will talk about all sorts of talking points hor d’oeuvres, lite as CNN wonder woman Soledad O’Brien hosts. food and mimosas! wed Panelists include Johnny Weir, LZ Granderson, Don’t forget to Donna Rose, and Robin Brand. Tickets to the bring a toy to give event are $25 and benefit Emory’s James to charity! Starts Weldon Johnson Institute and the National at 7pm, 21+. Center for Civil & Human Rights. Tickets are available for purchase at www. jamesweldonjohnson. emory.edu.
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Creep of the Week
So maybe is just saying he loves his dick jokes good and gay
By D’Anne Witkowski
ttention gays: recently paroled felon and rapper T.I. thinks you are too sensitive, and maybe he’s right. Maybe years of being treated like second-class citizens and being accused of and equated with pedophilia and bestiality and being at risk of losing jobs or homes or family and being bullied and beaten and even killed just for being gay has made gays a little sensitive. Combine all of this with a love for Barbara Streisand, Broadway, and Bette Midler and yeah, I can see where sensitivity overload might be an issue. I mean, a person can’t even tell a little gay joke these days without the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation putting out a press release. Thankfully, T.I. has an exceptionally insensitive sense of humor, which he shared in a recent interview with Vibe magazine. “Man, I will say this, the funniest joke I ever heard Tracy [Morgan] say during a stand-up was, ‘C’mon man, I think gay people are too sensitive,’” T.I. said. “‘If you can take a dick, you can take a joke’ That shit was funny to me. And it’s kind of true.” I know, right? It’s so true! I can’t stop LOLing at the hilariousness of it. Actually, I don’t get it. How are taking “a dick” and taking “a joke” related? Maybe he’s saying that both dicks and jokes go in the same place? In this case he’s talking about the butt, and there certainly are a lot of butt-related jokes out there, not to mention dick jokes. So maybe T.I. is just saying he loves his dick jokes good and gay. In the same interview T.I. accuses gays of being un-American for protesting anti-gay slurs. “They’re like, ‘If you have an opinion against us, we’re gonna shut you down,’” he says. “That’s not American. If you’re gay you should have the right to be gay in peace, and if you’re against it you should have the right to be against it in peace.”
Ah, there you go. If only anti-gay folks were left to be anti-gay in peace things would be fine. Never mind the fact that the only reason gays can’t be “gay in peace” is because of the anti-gay folks who not only want to deprive gays of their rights, they also want to deny that gays are fully human and would prefer that they disappear. That, to me, seems like a difficult position to maintain “in peace.” T.I.’s aforementioned favorite joke comes from an anti-gay rant Tracy Morgan went on during a June 4, 2011 stand-up gig. Kevin Rogers, a gay man in the audience, detailed Morgan’s remarks on Facebook after the show. Morgan made plenty of anti gay remarks, including that lesbians just pretend to be lesbians because they hate men, kids learn to be gay from the media, and that being gay is a choice. However, all of this paled in comparison to what Morgan said about his son. Rogers wrote, “[Morgan] said that if his son was gay he better come home and talk to him like a man and not [he mimicked a gay, high pitched voice] or he would pull out a knife and stab that little N (one word I refuse to use) to death.” Got that? If Morgan’s son was an effeminate gay man, Morgan would murder him in a gruesome and violent way. This certainly goes against the T.I. claim that you should be anti-gay “in peace.” There’s really nothing peaceful about Morgan’s comments. Or funny, for that matter. As far as gays being too sensitive, Rogers wrote, “I figured at some point the gay jokes would fly and I’m well prepared for a good ribbing of straight gay humor. I have very thick skin when it comes to humor; I can dish and I can take.” But threatening to stab your son to death for being gay? That’s not a joke, and it’s not funny. Morgan has since apologized for the anti-gay rant. T.I., on the other hand, seems determined to keep this “joke” alive.
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I hear a Symphony!
o Yo Yo! Sorry, but I’m in my HIP HOP mood honey as I’m about to interview a fellow performer friend of mind who’s about to rock the rap world with his own style of rap, singing, poetry, and other elements child. Watch out Cazwell, Midtown’s own Symphony is about to pump up the volume (do people still say “pump up the volume”? I’m so old school). So, over the Thanksgiving holidays, after recovering from my “itus”, I decided to check out a poetry slam show and to my surprise Symphony emerged into the spotlight and did his hot song from his new album that he’s sang all over Midtown called “Autumn Flower Girl”. While enjoying the song, I started to reflect on the times when he did back up dancing for Janet Jackson (well…for drag entertainer Shabazz…. who does the ILLUSION of Janet) for the Starlight Pride shows at Piedmont Park that he choreographed. I also reflected on the times when he used to special guest for my variety shows that I need to go back to doing. Anyway, needless to say, he’s already a familiar face in our community and I think it’s time to interview him. Let’s go! So how did you get into doing rap? Because child I still have this image of you doing backup dancing for SINGLE LADIES with Princess Charles. Symphony: Well as you already know, I really came to Atlanta to pursue dance. I had no idea I would be rapping, it never even crossed my mind. It was something I admired from a distance but later realized after working with other artist, singing and getting more involved with my poetry, I discovered that rap was in my DNA. Brent: Yes ma’am for that DNA. So how did your album come about? Symphony: It got to a point where I felt like I was almost pushed into a corner. People kept saying ‘You need to do your own album’. For years I’ve been doing background dancing, writing for other artists, choreography…etc. Now it’s my turn to do my thing.
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Brent: I love your “Autumn Flower Girl” song, where else have you performed it? Symphony: In Sylvia, GA Brent: Who? Savannah? Symphony: No that’s SYLVANIA, GA. AREA CODE 912 BACKWATER EVERYTHING IS EVERYTHING (he says all these big cap words with a certain rhythm). Yeah, that’s my hometown. It felt good to go back home to display what I was doing outside of Sylvania. And to see my choir, I was a choir director there; I come from a singing family. Brent: Do you feel the rap community is more accepting of the gay community now? I mean they should recognize by now that there are a growing number of the gays purchasing their music. And plus, I read on the internet where Fat Joe has said that the rap community is OWNED by the gay mafia (in which I think that sounds hot!). Symphony: Well I can’t speak for the entire rap community, but as far as how I feel about sexuality----love is love. If a man finds a man to love him or a woman finds a woman or a man finds a woman, horse, goat…love is love. But yea the hip hop was known for it’s strict ‘no homo’ rule back in the day but there are bridges being gapped because now they realized the gays have definitely helped pushed the hip hop genre to the next level. Brent: Amen! I wish we had more time to ‘rap’, but in the meantime, if a reader wants to support you, how can they obtain or purchase a copy of your album? Symphony: For now, you can contact me at email@example.com, Also check me out at firstname.lastname@example.org Thank you so much Symphony, it’s always nice to support the variety of performers and talent in our community. UNTIL next week, DON’T read the girls, instead read The Brent Star Report! Where to catch Brent Star: Thursdays at Matador Cantina (925 Garrett St), Saturdays at Tijuana Garage, Sunday with the Armorettes at Burkharts. www.facebook.com/ Mr.BrentStar
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Deep Inside Hollywood by Romeo San Vicente
Don’t call it The A-List
Contempt breeds ratings and ratings breed copycats and that’s why, with the success of The A-List: New York and The A-List: Dallas, comes a reality series – tentatively and awkwardly titled The Fire Island Summer Project – about a group of gay men (and “the people who love them”) on, of course, Fire Island. Casting is underway and World Of Wonder – the men who’ve brought you RuPaul’s Drag Race and about a million other wacky entertainments – is behind it all. So if you’re young, look good in a tiny swimsuit and have a borderline personality disorder that can only be soothed by a life lived on camera while you throw drinks in the faces of your friends and scream, “I’M TIRED OF ALL THE DRAMA!” then, by all means, go online and fill out that application. You have only your dignity to lose.
Hooray! Arrested Development is coming to… Netflix?
Look, Romeo San Vicente is just as confused as you are by this news, but the facts are this: Arrested Development (featuring the frequently underappreciated comedic skills of Hollywood power-lesbian Portia de Rossi) is, indeed, finally coming back for a handful of new episodes. And you can see them streaming if you’re a Netflix subscriber. That’s right. Netflix. Apparently the critically acclaimed sitcom is still such an economically uncertain property that no major (or minor) network fought to outbid the DVD subscription service for the rights to air what is meant to be a sort of prequel to the long-gestating feature film. And you’ll still have to wait: 2013 is what we’re hearing. That gives you time to become a subscriber.
Zachary Quinto was Never Here
The now-publicly gay Zachary Quinto recently appeared in a weird, funny turn on American Horror Story and the biggest upcoming project on his plate is the Star Trek sequel, where he’ll be refitted with those pointy ears. But mega-events like that take time to plan, execute and market, so the talented young actor is keeping busy with a thriller called You Were Never Here. Directed by Camille Thoman and co-starring Big Love/The Killing alum Mireille Enos, the limited information available reveals that it’s going to be a Rear Window-style (that’s Disturbia, kids) suspense-driven drama. No word yet on how closely it’ll hew to that template or if Quinito’s going to play the voyeuristic Jimmy Stewart/Shia LeBeouf character or the bad guy across the street. It’ll make a difference in the way hair and makeup deals with his extremely expressive eyebrows, to be sure.
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