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ISSUE # 24 | 06.15.17 TOP TRAX: WRABEL RISING LGBTQ STAR

DESTINATIONS: GOURMET LOUNGE DINING SHOPPING BAG: DESIGNER SUMMER TEES

MEET

LUIS ALBERTO RODRIGUEZ SEXY DANCER & MODEL


TABLE OF CONTENTS: 7American . DESTINATIONS: THE NEW FIRST CLASS Airlines has joined the ranks of carriers

providing a distinctly sophisticated environment and gourmet dining at their airport lounges for First Class travelers.

12You. SHOPPING BAG: DESIGNER T-SHIRTS can choose both comfort and style for your

summer tees from designers who offer the best of both.

shoots as an opportunity for storytelling, and Wire Magazine thinks you will enjoy the story he is telling as this issue's cover and centerfold model.

20 . TOP TRAX: READY, WILLING AND WRABEL With his highly-anticipated new EP We Can Be

Beautiful now making the virtual rounds and getting rave reviews, it won't be long before singer/songwriter Stephen Wrabel's powerful pipes and soulful storytelling become the new voice of the LGBTQ community.

26 . GOING OUT: PLAN YOUR OUTINGS The week's rundown of nightlife, dining and cultural events.

PHOTO BY MARK HENDERSON. WWW.MARKHENDERSONPHOTOGRAPHY.COM

14Hunky . MEET THE MODEL: LUIS ALBERTO RODRIGUEZ model Luis Alberto Rodriguez sees photo


Publisher/Editor in Chief Rafa Carvajal Editor Michael W. Sasser Associate Publisher/Editor Michael Bustamante Design & Production True Ink Designs L.L.C. | trueinkdesigns.com

S AT TWIST MPHOTUOSSBYCJ.LRE. DABVISOY SATURDAY TOS WWW.WIREMAG.COM/PHO

Columnists Alfredo Barrios Alyn Darnay Dane Steele Green Anthony Reyes Dr. Amy Wecker Official Photography Studio Photo Studio Miami Staff Photographer J.R. Davis Local Advertising advertising@wiremag.com National Advertising Rep. Rivendell Media | 212.242.6863 Contact Information Tel: 305.520.WIRE Email: info@wiremag.com 1541 Brickell Avenue, #2004, Miami, FL 33129 Wire Magazine is published, produced, and owned by Wire Media Group L.L.C. All Rights Reserved. Distributed in print in Miami, The Beaches, and Fort Lauderdale, and digitally worldwide through wiremag.com The views, opinions or positions expressed by contributors to and interview subjects of Wire Magazine are theirs alone and do not necessarily reflect the views, opinions or positions of Wire Magazine, its staff or publisher. Cover photo by Mark Henderson www.markhendersonphotography.com Model: Luis Alberto Rodriguez


PUBLISHER'S CORNER WHEN DID LYING BECOME THE NORM? It is truly disgraceful to watch the Senate hearings where Trump administration officials, including Attorney General Jeff Sessions, so obviously lie or refuse to answers questions simply because they feel like doing so. Unfortunately, these people are taking their cues from the liar-in-chief who we know constantly lies as he sees fit to get his way. If you don't believe that Trump constantly lies, all you have to do is watch the many YouTube videos showing that he does. It is pathetic to see a grown man, who happens to hold the highest office in the land, so obviously ignore the truth and constantly change his stories. The videos of Trump's contradicting statements do not lie, no matter how much Trump and his minions try to make us believe otherwise. It is therefore no surprise that people reporting to Trump feel so comfortable taking a page from his book and lying or stonewalling to cover up for him. They must be saying to themselves that if it's OK for the president to lie, why would it not be OK for them to do the same. It is high time that the Senators holding these people accountable in hearings, cut the BS and empathetically remind them that they swore under oath to tell the truth, rather than to lie or stonewall to protect Trump. Let it be seen how much of a liar the president truly is, so he can get impeached once and for all for constantly telling untruths and for obstructing justice. Pretending that he just had watercooler conversations with people – such as the ones he had with the former director of the FBI – is not believable. We are not stupid, President Trump, we know you have something to hide and are doing your best to do so. We just don't know what it is yet. That is why we need a full investigation by Special Counsel Mueller to get to the truth that you are so desperately trying to hide and avoid. Our nation does really deserve so much better than Trump's constant lies and stonewalling. On a different note, by now you have probably noticed Luis Alberto Rodriguez, the hunky model gracing the cover of this issue of Wire Magazine. This week's cover story introduces you to this dancer and model with an interview and photo essay. Luis feels that every photo shoot is an opportunity to tell a story and we think you will like the tale he is weaving in this smoldering introduction, and in his journey to the United States from Cuba by way of Spain. In this week's Top Trax column, DJ FR8-O shares the results of his sit-down with rising star Stephen Wrabel's (known just as "Wrabel"). FR8-O says that with Wrabel's highly-anticipated new EP We Can Be Beautiful now making the virtual rounds and getting rave reviews, it won't be long before his powerful pipes and soulful storytelling become the new voice of the LGBTQ community. Also in this issue of Wire Magazine, travel writer Dane Steele Green explains how American Airlines is now the latest carrier to offer First Class travelers a gourmet experience on the ground in sophisticated First Class lounges, helping take the edge off today's commercial flight experience. Finally, wherever you might be headed, why not enjoy the fusion of style and comfort provided by the designer t-shirts featured in this week's Shopping Bag.

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DESTINATIONS

PHOTO CREDIT: Š 2017 AMERICAN AIRLINES, INC.

By Dane Steele Green

U.S. AIRLINES INVEST IN FIRST CLASS CUSTOMERS... ON THE GROUND he airport experience for international and domestic air travel has become everything but a pleasant experience. Long security lines and record-breaking numbers of travelers have created chaos at airports around the world. Thankfully, airlines are starting to take note and have invested hundreds of millions of dollars globally into the airport experience. Restaurants, bars and boutiques are popping up all over the world and airports are now becoming destinations. No longer is a layover a negative experience and arriving to the airport early is becoming an attractive idea rather than a daunting formality of international air travel. This trend began abroad years ago, with foreign carriers focusing on the pre-boarding customer experience. Airlines such as Cathay Pacific, Singapore Airlines, Qatar Airways and Lufthansa have all poured money into revamping and modernizing their First Class lounges. And while British Airways has invested 400 million pounds into updating their UK terminals, the airline recently

announced a multi-million pound redesign of New York's JFK Terminal 7. Updates will include an expedited check-in process with private areas for Club World and First customers, completely revamped lounges with pre-flight dining and updated gate seating. British Airways is not the only airline investing stateside; the trend has now extended to U.S.-based carriers as well. Last year, United Airlines launched "United Polaris," an initiative to transform the business class experience. In December of 2016, they unveiled the Polaris Lounge at Chicago O'Hare – the first of its kind offered by a U.S. carrier. This elevated experience offers pre-boarding amenities such as private daybeds, spa showers and premium dining that help the often-weary business traveler board feeling refreshed. American Airlines is the most recent U.S. carrier to follow suit, launching their Flagship First Dining experience at New York's JFK airport on May 25. After checking in at an exclusive private area at Terminal 8, First

Class customers traveling on qualifying international and transcontinental flights, are invited to a delicious, pre-departure sit-down meal in a private area within the newly renovated Flagship Lounge. What's even more unique is that the food and beverage items are sourced locally, providing a meal that is both sustainable and fresh. As a world traveler who has been in the industry for 10 years (and known to be a stickler for amenities), I can be hard to impress. However, I was fortunate enough to attend the launch of American's Flagship First Dining in New York City. At 5 p.m., I was picked up from my office and whisked to a pop up location in SoHo, where I was greeted with a glass of champagne and immediately immersed in my journey. It was everything: American, New York and luxury rolled into one. If this is a sign of what's to come for American travelers, I for one, plan to get to the airport early.

Steele Luxury Travel can assist you with all your travel plans. www.SteeleTravel.com #24 2017 WIREMAG.COM 7


What is TRUVADA for PrEP? TRUVADA for PrEP (pre-exposure prophylaxis) is a prescription medicine that is used together with safer sex practices to help reduce the risk of getting HIV-1 through sex. This use is only for HIV-negative adults who are at high risk of getting HIV-1. To help determine your risk of getting HIV-1, talk openly with your healthcare provider about your sexual health. Ask your healthcare provider if you have questions about how to prevent getting HIV. Always practice safer sex and use condoms to lower the chance of sexual contact with body fluids. Never reuse or share needles or other items that have body fluids on them.

IMPORTANT SAFETY INFORMATION |What is the most important information I should know

about TRUVADA for PrEP?

Before taking TRUVADA for PrEP: u You must be HIV-negative before you start taking TRUVADA for PrEP. You must get tested to make sure that you do not already have HIV-1. Do not take TRUVADA to reduce the risk of getting HIV-1 unless you are confirmed to be HIV-negative. u Many HIV-1 tests can miss HIV-1 infection in a person who has recently become infected. If you have flu-like symptoms, you could have recently become infected with HIV-1. Tell your healthcare provider if you had a flu-like illness within the last month before starting or at any time while taking TRUVADA for PrEP. Symptoms of new HIV-1 infection include tiredness, fever, joint or muscle aches, headache, sore throat, vomiting, diarrhea, rash, night sweats, and/or enlarged lymph nodes in the neck or groin. While taking TRUVADA for PrEP: u You must continue to use safer sex practices. Just taking TRUVADA for PrEP may not keep you from getting HIV-1. u You must stay HIV-negative to keep taking TRUVADA for PrEP: • Get tested for HIV-1 at least every 3 months. • If you think you were exposed to HIV-1, tell your healthcare provider right away. u To further help reduce your risk of getting HIV-1: • Know your HIV status and the HIV status of your partners. • Get tested for other sexually transmitted infections. Other infections make it easier for HIV to infect you. • Get information and support to help reduce risky sexual behavior, such as having fewer sex partners. • Do not miss any doses of TRUVADA. Missing doses may increase your risk of getting HIV-1 infection. u If you do become HIV-1 positive, you need more medicine than TRUVADA alone to treat HIV-1. TRUVADA by itself is not a complete treatment for HIV-1. If you have HIV-1 and take only TRUVADA, your HIV-1 may become harder to treat over time. TRUVADA can cause serious side effects: u Worsening of hepatitis B (HBV) infection. TRUVADA is not approved to treat HBV. If you have HBV and stop taking TRUVADA, your HBV may suddenly get worse. Do not stop taking TRUVADA without first talking to your healthcare provider, as they will need to monitor your health.

|Who should not take TRUVADA for PrEP? Do not take TRUVADA for PrEP if you: u Already have HIV-1 infection or if you do not know your HIV-1 status. If you are HIV-1 positive, you need to take other medicines with TRUVADA to treat HIV-1. TRUVADA by itself is not a complete treatment for HIV-1. If you have HIV-1 and take only TRUVADA, your HIV-1 may become harder to treat over time. u Also take certain medicines to treat hepatitis B infection. |What are the other possible side effects of TRUVADA for PrEP? Serious side effects of TRUVADA may also include: u Kidney problems, including kidney failure. Your healthcare provider may do blood tests to check your kidneys before and during treatment with TRUVADA. If you develop kidney problems, your healthcare provider may tell you to stop taking TRUVADA. u Too much lactic acid in your blood (lactic acidosis), which is a serious but rare medical emergency that can lead to death. Tell your healthcare provider right away if you get these symptoms: weakness or being more tired than usual, unusual muscle pain, being short of breath or fast breathing, stomach pain with nausea and vomiting, cold or blue hands and feet, feel dizzy or lightheaded, or a fast or abnormal heartbeat. u Severe liver problems, which in rare cases can lead to death. Tell your healthcare provider right away if you get these symptoms: skin or the white part of your eyes turns yellow, dark “tea-colored” urine, light-colored stools, loss of appetite for several days or longer, nausea, or stomach-area pain. u Bone problems, including bone pain, softening, or thinning, which may lead to fractures. Your healthcare provider may do tests to check your bones. Common side effects in people taking TRUVADA for PrEP are stomacharea (abdomen) pain, headache, and decreased weight. Tell your healthcare provider if you have any side effects that bother you or do not go away. |What should I tell my healthcare provider before taking

TRUVADA for PrEP?

u All your health problems. Be sure to tell your healthcare provider

if you have or have had any kidney, bone, or liver problems, including hepatitis. u If you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. It is not known if TRUVADA can harm your unborn baby. If you become pregnant while taking TRUVADA for PrEP, talk to your healthcare provider to decide if you should keep taking TRUVADA. u If you are breastfeeding (nursing) or plan to breastfeed. Do not breastfeed. If you become HIV-positive, HIV can be passed to the baby in breast milk. u All the medicines you take, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements. TRUVADA may interact with other medicines. Keep a list of all your medicines and show it to your healthcare provider and pharmacist when you get a new medicine. u If you take certain other medicines with TRUVADA, your healthcare provider may need to check you more often or change your dose. These medicines include certain medicines to treat hepatitis C (HCV) infection. You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit www.FDA.gov/medwatch, or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

Please see Important Facts about TRUVADA for PrEP including important warnings on the following page.


Have you heard about

TRUVADA for PrEP™? The once-daily prescription medicine that can help reduce the risk of getting HIV-1 when used with safer sex practices. • TRUVADA for PrEP is only for adults who are at high risk of getting HIV through sex. • You must be HIV-negative before you start taking TRUVADA for PrEP. Ask your doctor about your risk of getting HIV-1 infection and if TRUVADA for PrEP may be right for you.

visit start.truvada.com


IMPORTANT FACTS

This is only a brief summary of important information about taking TRUVADA for PrEPTM (pre-exposure prophylaxis) to help reduce the risk of getting HIV-1 infection. This does not replace talking to your healthcare provider about your medicine.

(tru-VAH-dah) MOST IMPORTANT INFORMATION ABOUT TRUVADA FOR PrEP Before starting TRUVADA for PrEP: • You must be HIV-1 negative. You must get tested to make sure that you do not already have HIV-1. Do not take TRUVADA for PrEP to reduce the risk of getting HIV-1 unless you are confirmed to be HIV-1 negative. • Many HIV-1 tests can miss HIV-1 infection in a person who has recently become infected. Symptoms of new HIV-1 infection include flu-like symptoms, tiredness, fever, joint or muscle aches, headache, sore throat, vomiting, diarrhea, rash, night sweats, and/or enlarged lymph nodes in the neck or groin. Tell your healthcare provider if you have had a flu-like illness within the last month before starting TRUVADA for PrEP. While taking TRUVADA for PrEP: • You must continue to use safer sex practices. Just taking TRUVADA for PrEP may not keep you from getting HIV-1. • You must stay HIV-negative to keep taking TRUVADA for PrEP. Get tested for HIV-1 at least every 3 months while taking TRUVADA for PrEP. Tell your healthcare provider right away if you think you were exposed to HIV-1 or have a flu-like illness while taking TRUVADA for PrEP. • If you do become HIV-1 positive, you need more medicine than TRUVADA alone to treat HIV-1. If you have HIV-1 and take only TRUVADA, your HIV-1 may become harder to treat over time. • See the “How To Further Reduce Your Risk” section for more information. TRUVADA may cause serious side effects, including: • Worsening of hepatitis B (HBV) infection. TRUVADA is not approved to treat HBV. If you have HBV, your HBV may suddenly get worse if you stop taking TRUVADA. Do not stop taking TRUVADA without first talking to your healthcare provider, as they will need to check your health regularly for several months.

ABOUT TRUVADA FOR PrEP TRUVADA for PrEP is a prescription medicine used together with safer sex practices to help reduce the risk of getting HIV-1 through sex. This use is only for HIV-negative adults who are at high risk of getting HIV-1. • To help determine your risk of getting HIV-1, talk openly with your healthcare provider about your sexual health. Do NOT take TRUVADA for PrEP if you: • Already have HIV-1 infection or if you do not know your HIV-1 status. • Take certain medicines to treat hepatitis B infection.

HOW TO TAKE TRUVADA FOR PrEP • Take 1 tablet once a day, every day, not just when you think you have been exposed to HIV-1. • Do not miss any doses. Missing doses may increase your risk of getting HIV-1 infection. • Use TRUVADA for PrEP together with condoms and safer sex practices. • Get tested for HIV-1 at least every 3 months. You must stay HIV-negative to keep taking TRUVADA for PrEP.

POSSIBLE SIDE EFFECTS OF TRUVADA FOR PrEP TRUVADA can cause serious side effects, including: • Those in the “Most Important Information About TRUVADA for PrEP” section. • New or worse kidney problems, including kidney failure. • Too much lactic acid in your blood (lactic acidosis), which is a serious but rare medical emergency that can lead to death. Tell your healthcare provider right away if you get these symptoms: weakness or being more tired than usual, unusual muscle pain, being short of breath or fast breathing, stomach pain with nausea and vomiting, cold or blue hands and feet, feel dizzy or lightheaded, or a fast or abnormal heartbeat. • Severe liver problems, which in rare cases can lead to death. Tell your healthcare provider right away if you get these symptoms: skin or the white part of your eyes turns yellow, dark “tea-colored” urine, light-colored stools, loss of appetite for several days or longer, nausea, or stomach-area pain. • Bone problems. Common side effects in people taking TRUVADA for PrEP include stomach-area (abdomen) pain, headache, and decreased weight. These are not all the possible side effects of TRUVADA. Tell your healthcare provider right away if you have any new symptoms while taking TRUVADA for PrEP. Your healthcare provider will need to do tests to monitor your health before and during treatment with TRUVADA for PrEP.

BEFORE TAKING TRUVADA FOR PrEP Tell your healthcare provider if you: • Have or have had any kidney, bone, or liver problems, including hepatitis. • Have any other medical conditions. • Are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. • Are breastfeeding (nursing) or plan to breastfeed. Do not breastfeed. If you become HIV-positive, HIV can pass to the baby in breast milk. Tell your healthcare provider about all the medicines you take: • Keep a list that includes all prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements, and show it to your healthcare provider and pharmacist. • Ask your healthcare provider or pharmacist about medicines that should not be taken with TRUVADA for PrEP.

HOW TO FURTHER REDUCE YOUR RISK • Know your HIV status and the HIV status of your partners. • Get tested for other sexually transmitted infections. Other infections make it easier for HIV to infect you. • Get information and support to help reduce risky sexual behavior, such as having fewer sex partners. • Do not share needles or personal items that can have blood or body fluids on them.

GET MORE INFORMATION • This is only a brief summary of important information about TRUVADA for PrEP. Talk to your healthcare provider or pharmacist to learn more, including how to prevent HIV infection. • Go to start.truvada.com or call 1-800-GILEAD-5 • If you need help paying for your medicine, visit start.truvada.com for program information.

TRUVADA, the TRUVADA Logo, TRUVADA FOR PREP, GILEAD, and the GILEAD Logo are trademarks of Gilead Sciences, Inc., or its related companies. All other marks referenced herein are the property of their respective owners. Version date: April 2017 © 2017 Gilead Sciences, Inc. All rights reserved. TVDC0092 05/17


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SHOPPING BAG shopping@wiremag.com

Summer Tees DOLCE & GABBANA PRINTED COTTON T-SHIRT Embrace music with this rounded

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GUCCI WASHED T-SHIRT WITH MONKEYS PRINT A classic red washed cotton

jersey with small holes in the fabric for a vintage effect. Alessandro Michele, the creative director of Gucci, introduces a new monkeys print, with the expression "L'Aveugle Par Amour" (Blind for Love) at the bottom. Enjoy a crew neck with a straight fit. 100% cotton. Made in Italy. $550

HUGO BOSS 'TINTYPE' PRINTED COTTON T-SHIRT Create effortless outfits all summer long

with this casually-cut BOSS Orange t-shirt crafted from soft cotton with a fun ice cream print. 100% cotton with a regular fit and crew neck. $44.99

VERSACE MEDUSA HEAD EMBOSSED T-SHIRT Feel charming and powerful while

sporting this t-shirt featuring a large embellished Medusa head. This exclusive style is part of Versace's online Athleisure collection and is not sold in stores. Featuring a round neck and relaxed fit. 100% Cotton. $350

12 WIREMAG.COM #24 2017


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MEET THE MODEL: By Rafa Carvajal

PHOTO BY JOSH SHIPP. PROVIDED BY LUIS RODRIGUEZ

LUIS RODRIGUEZ 14 WIREMAG.COM #24 2017


have many friends on Facebook, and some of them are models and dancers who post photos that garner a lot of likes online. Such is the case of hunky model Luis Alberto Rodriguez, featured as this week's Wire Magazine cover and centerfold model. Luis has a story to tell. His storytelling device is himself, his physique, and his beautiful photos. "In each photograph, a story is told and for me the most beautiful thing is to be able to transmit those feelings to each person who looks at

PHOTOS BY JOSH SHIPP. PROVIDED BY LUIS RODRIGUEZ

those photos," Luis tells us. Wire Magazine thinks you will find Luis' "story," as told in his interview and photoshoot, a compelling one. Enjoy getting to know him better!

#24 2017 WIREMAG.COM 15


"I CONSIDER MYSELF A FIGHTER, DETERMINED TO ACHIEVE MY DREAMS. I AM VERY FUN, ROMANTIC AND SPONTANEOUS. I LOVE BEING ABLE TO LEARN SOMETHING NEW EVERY DAY AND BE THE BEST VERSION OF MYSELF."

PHOTO BY MARK HENDERSON. WWW.MARKHENDERSONPHOTOGRAPHY.COM

- LUIS ALBERTO RODRIGUEZ

16 WIREMAG.COM #24 2017


RC: Where are you originally from and where do you live? LAR: I'm from Cuba and I live in Tampa. RC: Tell our readers about yourself. LAR: I consider myself a fighter, determined to achieve my dreams. I am very fun, romantic and spontaneous. I love being able to learn something new every day and be the best version of myself. I'm a fitness guy and I love taking care of my nutrition and my body. RC: What do you do for a living? LAR: I am a professional model and dancer. RC: Who is the professional icon that inspires you most? Why? LAR: Jennifer Lopez. I am inspired by this woman because I believe she is an example of perseverance, success, courage and professionalism, whose qualities describe me and make me become as big and successful. She has let the world know that no matter where we come from, or what our roots are, what's important is the attitude, charisma and never begging. RC: Describe yourself in three words.

PHOTO BY MARK HENDERSON. WWW.MARKHENDERSONPHOTOGRAPHY.COM

LAR: Brave, persevering and determined. RC: How do you stay in such great shape? LAR: Training each day and maintaining a strict and balanced diet. RC: How do you define being sexy? LAR: For me, being sexy is in the attitude we have in life; I think we can all be sexy no matter the body or face. If you are a passionate person, it will make you sexy.

#24 2017 WIREMAG.COM 17


RC: What do you enjoy the most about modeling for photography? LAR: Modeling makes me feel free, and it is a special feeling to be able to create with each one of the photos that I take. In each photograph, a story is told, and for me the most beautiful thing is to be able to transmit those feelings to each person who looks at those photos. RC: Boxers or briefs? LAR: Boxers. RC: What is your favorite time of your life? LAR: My childhood. RC: Where would you travel if you could go anywhere? Why? LAR: Dubai because I consider it to be a beautiful and interesting place. RC: What is your current struggle? LAR: Within the modeling world, participating

18 WIREMAG.COM #24 2017

PHOTO BY MARK HENDERSON. WWW.MARKHENDERSONPHOTOGRAPHY.COM

PHOTO BY JOSH SHIPP. PROVIDED BY LUIS RODRIGUEZ

in beauty pageants and dancing.


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TOP TRAX By DJ FR8-O

READY, WILLING AND WRABEL

PHOTO BY YAZZ ALALI. PROVIDED BY MIGHTY REAL AGENCY

ver since Sam Smith ghosted on us, the gays have been desperately in need of some new representation on the music charts. Well, it looks like we may finally have a winner. Singer/songwriter Stephen Wrabel (known just as "Wrabel") has been on the verge of mainstream fame since his 2014 collaboration with Afrojack, "Ten Feet Tall." With his highly anticipated new EP We Can Be Beautiful now making the virtual rounds and getting rave reviews, it won't be long before his powerful pipes and soulful storytelling become the new voice of the LGBTQ community. I caught up with the 28-year-old crooner just before he headed back into the studio to talk about the new EP, his next projects and whether he's ready to become our community's next musical icon. DJ FR8-O: How has the response been for the EP? Wrabel: It's been good. It's nice to finally have something out there that's more than just one song here, one song there. The best kind of response I get is when people say, "I can relate to this song or that song." Everybody hears things differently and reacts or relates to different things, so the best thing to hear is what people are getting out of it. DF: What's the story behind the title "We Can Be Beautiful?" W: You know on those antidepressant ads where people are kayaking or horseback riding or something, and then the one person has a raincloud over his head? So, I kind of wrote it for that person to let them know that "Hey bud, it's not so bad out there." My mom is always saying, "write happy songs" and this is a happy song. The whole EP tells the story of wanting something, getting something, losing something and remembering something. So I chose that track as the title of the EP because it kind of sums it all up for me.

20 WIREMAG.COM #24 2017

DF: Was it hard to be taken seriously as an openly gay artist? W: I've kind of found that to be the opposite actually. Years ago when I signed my first deal, I was very scared and didn't know. I had just come out, but didn't know how much I should talk about it, or "What should I say if they ask me this?" And a lot of that was my own stuff. I grew up going to church and that didn't help the equation. Now I find that people are just looking for an artist to be himself because everyone can relate to that. You don't have to be gay to relate to a gay artist because everybody's got their thing. DF: Is there an album in the works? W: Yeah, I'm still working on the full-length, realistically looking at next year. I'm kind of piecing it together and brainstorming. I have a bunch of songs written already. The oldest song will probably be about eight years old and the newest one I probably haven't written yet. DF: You are actually close friends with Ke$ha. Any chance she'll be making a cameo on the album? W: We met three years ago on a writing session and we became fast friends. She's kind of become my sister in a lot of ways. We've been writing together for three years now, so we'll see. She has no fear. Whereas I'm scared of my own reflection.


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DF: That's interesting since your songs are so vulnerable. It takes a lot of guts to put all that out there. W: Something happens when I'm writing where I think I can say anything and be completely honest, but in real life I'm just "I'm fine. Everything is fine." But when I'm putting it into a song I'm ready to go down. DF: What else have you got coming up? W: I've been doing some collaborations with some DJs that I'm really excited about. I love that world. I start everything with just piano and vocals, so to see things have this whole new life is really cool. I'm also really excited about some new releases coming this summer with some DJs, then I'm back to writing with a bunch of artists. I'm home now for the first time in a year, so it's nice to be home. DF: How about a tour? W: It looks like we're routing a tour for September/October, so I hope to be running around by the end of the year. I crave getting out and playing the songs, meeting all the people, and sharing way too much personal information, and all that stuff.

WRABEL'S EP WE COULD BE BEAUTIFUL IS OUT NOW. Connect with Wrabel: www.wrabelmusic.com Twitter: @wrabel www.facebook.com/wrabel Instagram: wrabel

If you're a recording artist, producer or musician and would like your work featured in TOP TRAX, hit me up at abarrios@wiremag.com. 22 WIREMAG.COM #24 2017

PHOTO PHOTO CREDIT: BY YAZZ Š DEPOSITPHOTOS.COM ALALI. PROVIDED BY MIGHTY | KAVRAMM REAL AGENCY

DF: Are you ready to be the next voice of the LGBTQ community? W: Yeah, bring it on! I strive in a very simple way to just be myself. Whatever that means. Wherever I'm at. Whatever platform I have now, I use to help people feel like they can be themselves. I don't necessarily have a political agenda. I just want you to be you and I want you to be comfortable and be celebrated.


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Wire Magazine 24.2017 Meet Luis Alberto Rodriguez  

By now you have probably noticed Luis Alberto Rodriguez, the hunky model gracing the cover of this issue of Wire Magazine. This week's cover...

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