Monday, February 28, 2011

Get Out To Vote - Online!

Christopher Dallman, Josh Zuckerman, Sacha Sacket, David Raleigh, Ari Gold, Dangerous Muse, and Jónsi.

Voting takes place all week long for LOGO TV's Click List videos, and some of the favorite artists for this blog can be found on the list. I am sure they would love to have your support. Jónsi, Dangerous Muse, Josh Zuckerman, Sacha Sacket, Christopher Dallman, David Raleigh, and Ari Gold are among the names you can vote for this week. Just go HERE, and scroll down the list to find your favorite, and click on them, and go to the bottom and click on VOTE. It is that easy. You don't really need to fill out the information. You can vote as often as you'd like, so you can vote for a few of your favorites. But to make your voting a bit easier, I will feature some of them right here on the blog.

Christopher Dallman has a beautiful and touching video for his introspective song, Ghosts. When the video first came out, this blog's resident str8 hunk, Chad Cavanaugh, couldn't get enough of it, and I gotta agree, cause months later, I still can't hear it enough. So here is Ghosts, from the amazing EP, Never Was.

Sexy, sultry, and in your face, Dangerous Muse's I Want It All has a youthful vigor that is exhilarating and intoxicating. These boys are rumored to be putting together a new album, and I hope they hurray!

Man, I love the music Sacha Sacket makes. I just can't help it, I do. And I don't want to help it, I want to feed the addiction, and listen to every last bit I can, including when I watch the video for Running Away. Of course, it never hurts when the artist is so damn easy on the eyes, you know?

If being cute isn't enough to earn a vote, how about being talented. Josh Zuckerman has managed to growl at me on more than one album, cause I find myself unable to say know to the rocker. At least when it comes to his music. Check out his latest video on the LOGO countdown, Fall In Love Again.

And while I suspect his fans will be clicking away for him, I couldn't go without sharing the video Icelandic cutie Jónsi has for the song Animal Arithmetic off his latest album, Go.

David Raleigh, Sir Ari Gold, Billy Porter, and Alan Cumming remake the classic song That's What Friends Are For, and once again, the money is not going to the artist, but instead to a very worthy cause, to support of the Ali Forney Center, a NYC shelter for homeless GLBT youth. Gold also has a solo effort, Make My Body Rock, which I have recently featured.

Again, you can just go HERE, scroll down the list to find your favorite, click on them, and go to the bottom and click on VOTE. It is that easy. You don't really need to fill out the information. You can vote as often as you'd like, so you can vote for a few of your favorites. And I do love when Out and Proud musicians are featured on LOGO, which too often is over-run with the latest videos from one diva or another. So vote for your favorite, vote for each one, just do you civic duty, and get out to VOTE!

Dark Monday - Pledge With Priscilla

Nick Adams Will Swenson
Tony Shelton
Top: Nick Adams; Middle: Will Swenson; Bottom: Tony Shelton

Who are these rather handsome and talented men in the pictures? They are the leads in the new Broadway show, Priscilla, Queen Of The Desert, which begins previews this evening at the Palace Theater on Broadway between 46th & 47th streets. They are Will Swenson, who plays Tick/Mitzi, Tony Shelton, who plays Bernadette, and the yummy Nick Adams, who plays Adam/Felicia. If you should turn up at the theater, you are more likely to see them looking like this:

Priscilla Queen of the Desert
Left to Right: Will, Tony & Nick.

As they prepare for previews and a Broadway opening, they took the time to record a video in support of acceptance and hope for LGBT people everywhere, and for LGBT Youth in particular. They recently got together with the people at the "It Gets Better" Project to take things a step further.

They are encouraging people to take the following pledge:

Everyone deserves to be respected for who they are. I pledge to spread this message to my friends, family and neighbors. I'll speak up against hate and intolerance whenever I see it, at school and at work. I'll provide hope for lesbian, gay, bi, trans and other bullied teens by letting them know that "It Gets Better."

Acceptance is a natural message from a musical like Priscilla, as it is part of the inherent message of the show. In fact, the producers of the show have made a sneak peak available online, and sho I thought I would share it with you.

You you like what you see, and are going to be in New York City soon, why not get tickets to see the show. You can find out about the show, and how to reserve tickets by visiting their official website here. I hope I get the chance to see it soon, cause I would love to see these men put in the performances I have been reading about. They've been met with praise everywhere they've been, and from what I have read in the response from the audience, the praise is well deserved.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Being Human 3 - Adam's Family


Tonight at 9PM/8PM Central Time, the second episode of the third season is to be broadcast on BBC America. As I tend to do, I will recap the episode, although there is no fear about too many spoilers, as I leave the last 20-30 minutes of the episode to you.


First, of course, we have a recap about the premiere episode, one I am still experiencing a bit of a buzz about. Not only have my favorite characters returned, but they brought another friend along, played by Robson Green. And that Mitchell had gone to Hell, well really Purgatory, and brought back Annie after having a little 'This Is Your Murderous Life' thing with Lia. She also told Mitchell that his time was near, and it was a werewolf that would kill him, a wolf-shaped bullet.

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So, this episode starts with us peeping in on a family in a small Welsh town in 1985. The mother & father were telling the son they were moving, although the son was wanting none of it. So, he announces he is hungry, and the father lends him his arm, and the boy feeds. A vampire! In the background of this scene, we can hear the lovely sound of The Human League's hit song, Human.

Next, everyone waking up, and Annie eager to wait on Mitchell hand and foot. He has an interview at the hospital for a job, and she insists on going with him. George and Nina show up to work, and as Nina check on a patient, she sees a vampire feeding on the elderly man. She interrupts, calls George, and they start chasing him down the hallway. Surprisingly enough, no one helps them out. Nina catches up with him, discover he a bit of a brat.

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Nina gives Mitchell advice freely, and it soon looks like he is talking to himself, not a good thing during an interview. It doesn't go well at all. Cut back to Nina & George with Adam, the teenage vampire. He is all sarcasm and sexual, neither of which impresses the guys. Including his snark about doggy-style. They find out his mother is gone, and the father is lying up in a room in the hospital, so Nina wants to step in, which George is against. Of course, Nina wins, and George bring the 46-year-old teen back home, hoping to hand him off to Mitchell.


Meanwhile, Mitchell is stopped outside by a gentleman he doesn't know. And by gentleman, I mean another vampire whose name I don't know. Turns out it is Richard Hardgraves, and he is there to talk to Mitchell for the Vampire Elders. He tries to push Mitchell around, and although he initially rejects him, with the mention of the Box Tunnel 20, Mitchell concedes and goes with him. George arrives home with Adam, who proceeds to hit on Annie, much to everyone's disgust. George sends him to his room. Back to Mitchell, he is told the Elders expect him, and Hardgraves, in the import/export business, arranged to for him to travel on his next ship to South America. And Mitchell doesn't really have a choice in the matter.Hardgraves tell him he is weak and craven, and while Mitchell scoff at 'a vampire taking the high moral ground,' he grabs the envelope of money, which he says does not note acceptance, and walks away.

Back at the hotel, George is trying to lay own some ground rules, to help Adam settle in. Annie pops in on them, which scares Adam. Of course, he hits on her a few seconds later, but he is a teen, kinda. Mitchell arrives home, and George goes to give him to low-down. Adam follows him, and overhears Mitchell refusing to take part in this plan. Soon he seems to concede to the plan, but once they are alone, he tell Adam he wasn't him to stay far from him. Adam refers to Mitchell as the 'Wiffy Goth' and tells him "just because you are a vampire doesn't mean you have to smell like the undead. One word, Mitch, deodorant. Shhhhhh." Annie walks up to talk to Mitchell, and Adam exits, while giving Annie signs to meeting and having sex. Annie is there with the next phases of her plan to get Mitchell a job, after the debacle of the interview. She's written a reference letter, hoping to get Mitchell that job. George immediate comes in, looking for Adam, who is in the kitchen.


Next we see Adam at the hospital, talking to George and Nina. Things are not looking good for Adam's father, and he was asking about his son. Nina sends Adam in to give him some time alone, and the father is quite sweet, telling him he was always his 'little boy.' He is weak, and soon passes away, and Adam watches as he passes through the door to the afterlife. This leaves the teen scared and confused. He calls for Nina, who tells him the father is gone. He goes out to talk to George, and just as he is about to open up, Nina sends him in to say goodbye to his father. When they check on him, he is gone. As they start to look for him, the 1977 song Peaches by The Stranglers plays.

We see Adam follow some Peaches into an arcade. He needs to feed, that much we know. He approaches a blond, who answers, although not with much interest. As Nina and George enter the arcade, the two teens head out. Adam is overly aggressive, and mentions her pale skin, so he can see her veins. He moves in and just as he is about to bite, Nina grabs him, saving the girl, who, as she explained to Nina, was just looking to kill some time in the afternoon. They bring him back home, seeking Mitchell's assistance.

Mitchell is at a loss, fearing that having the loose cannon teenager around will make his own cravings stronger, he offers Hardgraves card as a resource to help with the kid. It is decided that George and Nina will bring him to Hardgraves, where Mr. Mrs. Hardgraves fawn all over him, especially when letting him drink from the carafe of freshly-drawn blood. Mind you, they are not very polite with the werewolves. But they do get the tour, including a chance to meet #7, the seventh food source for the Hardgraves, a man who voluntarily allows them to drink his blood, while being treated as either a child or a pet. He speaks of who Richard and Emma make him feel special, although Nina is less than impressed.

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They come in from the garden, and the wife is feeding him cookies, rubbing his leg. Once George and Nina are gone, they talk of celebrating Adam's arrival with a special party, with feeding and new sheets on the menu. At home, Mitchell is watching TV when a news report of the Box Tunnel 20 comes on, causing him anxiety. As he drinks, the news switches to sports, but the announcer speaks of Mitchell's clash with an unnamed vampire - is this a hallucination, or has Lia told everyone the news?

George and Nina return, but can't really be comfortable with leaving Adam with those people. They decide to go get Adam and return to the hotel with him. As they are leaving, we see Mitchell is packing a bag, as if he is preparing for a trip to South America. Annie comes in on him, and he talkes a break because he has a message, and Annie is sure it is about the job.


Will Mitchell get the job, and if he does, will he stay in Wales? Will George and Nina be in time to pick up Adam, or will he be too far gone in the decadence of a new lifestyle? Does this mean out happy quartet will be a party of five?Will his arms look as good as they do in that picture above all season long? At what point will the song Aisha by Death In Vegas be heard in the background?

To find out the answers to those questions and more, watch BBC America Saturday night 9PM, 8PM Central time. For more about the show, you can check the official website here.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Sir Ari Gold for the Ali Forney Center

Sir Ari Gold

Last week I celebrated Ari Gold's birthday. This week, I have found a video of a recent performance where Gold featured his latest single, Make My Body Rock, and was raising money for the Ali Forney Center in New York City, a foundation which offers housing to LGBT Youth. And as Ari is not one to scrimp on the production values when he performs, he did pull out all the stops, and offered up this extravaganza at the club Hiro in New York City. Get ready to crank up the volume and go full screen, cause HEEEEEEEERRRRREEEE's Ari!

About The Ali Forney Center
As the visibility of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) people grows in our society, more and more LGBT teens are finding the courage to come out of the closet.

Tragically, as many as 25% of these teens are rejected by their families, and many end up homeless on the streets. Homeless LGBT teens are more likely than straight homeless teens to be subjected to violence on the streets, and in the homeless shelter system. They suffer from inordinate rates of mental illness, trauma, HIV infection and substance abuse.

The Ali Forney Center (AFC) was started in June of 2002 in response to the lack of safe shelter for LGBT youth in New York City. We are committed to providing these young people with safe, dignified, nurturing environments where their needs can be met, and where they can begin to put their lives back together.

You can go to their website HERE, and donate money to support this amazing organization. You can check out what great work they do, and see some great videos. You can also join their mailing list and receive regular updates on the activities at the Center.

For more information about Ari Gold, you can check out the post here, can provide information, as well as links.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

New Music - diSanto


I recently came across an EP by a young Latin man that I have to say captured my heart, and that was before I saw the video! The Beginning is diSanto's debut, and I have to say, I like it very much. The six-song offering - OK, really 5-songs, with an intro - is big and bold, with lots of delicious flavor going on in there. He manages to meld Miami, Los Angeles, and New York into a sound that is new and fresh, with plenty of heat! And did I mention diSanto is gorgeous? Well, he is. I mean, check out those pictures...

The album kicks off with the drama on the Welcome intro, in which diSanto introduces himself and makes promises I want to believe. That brings up the first track, Sinner. This is a bit Freddie Mercury, a bit George Michael, and a dash of Adam Lambert, with a playful edge that is enticing. There is a theatricality that goes just far enough, and a flirtatiousness when diSanto is practically cooing into my ear. Check out the video.

This brings us to Ride My Chu-Chu, and the dance track just melted by cold, jaded heart. There is a flirty, throw caution to the wind feel that draws me in. And drawing me in even more, the next track is Come. Talk about making me sweat, this track has a beat that infects the hips, and a sounds that infects the brain. Check out this clip, taken from a live performance in LA.

Get Away, turns the beat back a bit, and delivers an intoxicating hooky chorus the a pop flare, but still keeps the sexy edge going. The heat is turned back up for the final track, Sanctified. I swear, for me, this one burns with the brightest Latin flame, and might be my favorite. Oh, who am I kidding, I love them all! But this one certainly had me shaking my shoulders, ready to be in danger with him. Oh, yeah.

diSanto was born in Puerto Rico, where he started singing in the choir at a young age, only to be made a soloist quickly. He went to New York City at 17 on a dance scholarship, where he completed his classwork and was employed as a dancer. Soon he was called to Miami, where he worked dancing and acting while working toward his goal of being a singer. That is now happening, and I for one look forward to hearing what he has coming next.

You can purchase the album on iTunes here and you can get it at Amazon.Com here, both for less that $6. For more about diSanto, you can check out his official website here.

Worth Another Listen - Bruce Channel

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Left to right: John Lennon, Bruce Channel & Delbert McClinton.

The song "Hey! Baby" in just iconic in so many ways. For many people, it is one of the American pop songs from the early 60s they remember. And for another generation, it was brought to their attention in the movie 'Dirty Dancing'. For others, it is a song that perfectly captures the transition music was making at the time. For another, it is a perfect example of one-hit-wonder, as the song hangs on in the psyche of pop culture, yet still few would be able to name the singer/songwriter responsible. But they would be singing along!

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Bruce Channel was a working singer/songwriter from Texas, often working along side Delbert McClinton performing country music. In 1959, Channel worked with Margaret Cobb and together they wrote the song "Hey! Baby", which Channel performed at live shows over the next few years. Finally, in 1952, Channel recorded the song in the studio, and once released, it became a major hit.

With the success of the song, Channel and McClinton toured across the globe in support of the song. In interviews, Channel has often credited McClinton for the success of the song, saying it was the sound of the harmonica that did it. It seems McClinton's harmonica was grabbing a great bit of attention back in those days. Here is an interview Channel and McClinton did, referencing a tour date when the Beatles opened for them.

Channel was on the road for many years, until he decided to settle in Nashville, Tennessee, the home of Country music. There, he established a career as a respected songwriter, and was eventually inducted into the Rockabilly Hall of Fame.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Glee Redux - Blame It On The Alcohol

Jamie Foxx George Thorogood
Ke$ha The Human League

Clockwise from Top Left: Jamie Foxx, George Thorogood, Human League, Carole King, and Ke$ha.

Once again I am recapping the latest episode of Glee, only using the videos of the original songs rather than the made-for-TV covers. Hope you enjoy.

It is alcohol awareness because there seems to be an alcohol problem at McKinley high. Principal Figgins asks Mr. Shu to put together a program of songs to support the issue. Will chats with Miss Pillsbury, or Mrs Stamos, and they pretend to get along until Sue comes in to terrorize Shu, predicting his future-alcoholism. She thinks it will be from his losing with the GLEE club, and not his terrible track record with romance, which is quite the misstep for Sue.

The kids are chatting, and Puck wants Rachel to throw a party since her fathers are away for the weekend. She refuses, and moves on to hitting on Finn, wanting him to hear the song she has written for Regionals. She sings it, and Finn tries to be nice, but has to tell her 'Hairband' is terrible. Rachel decides she has to live more so she can write like Joni Mitchell or Carole King, and runs off to tell Puck the party is on. The cell phones light up as the kids are deciding who is going to Rachel's Train Wreck of a party.

They get to the party, only to find Rachel her prim and proper self, with a 2 wine-cooler minimum in place. After threatening to walk out, the kids agree to stay if Puck could break into Rachel's Dads liquor cabinet. Soon they are all drunk, and Finn gives a quick lesson to Rachel about the different types of drunk girls, ending with being mean to Rachel. Hmmmm. It is time to play spin the bottle, and Rachel gets Blaine as a 'partner'. While the sound of Josie Cotton's Johnny Are You Queer? play in the background, Rachel and Blaine kiss.

They linger a little longer than anyone expected, especially Kurt. A drunken Blaine and Rachel sing Don't You Want Me Baby by the Human League.

Kurt's Dad is making a brunch, and goes up to ask Kurt a question. He goes into his room and finds Blaine in the bed, while Kurt is up tending to his skin care regime.

The kids show up to school to rehearse a song for the assembly, and they are hungover. Artie offers up Bloody Maries, the hair of the dawg, to get them all back on even keel. Then they get up and sing Jamie Foxx's Blame It (On The Alcohol), while most are a bit toasty from the Bloody Maries.

Mr. Shu struggles with what to do about the assembly. She is chatting with Coach Beist about it, and they decide they need some time to relax, and perhaps a fun night out would be what the doctor ordered. Rachel calls up Blaine while listening to Carole King singing So Far Away.

Rachel asks Blaine out, which leads to a discussion between Kurt and Blaine about sexuality. Kurt is hurt because he feels Blaine's indecision about bisexuality is tantamount to going back into the closet, while Blaine thinks he has the right to explore his sexuality. And, let us not factor in Kurt's own injured pride about losing his gay man to a girl...

While out at a honky-tonk bar, Shu and Coach Beist are enjoying one another, and the hot called up Shu to do a song, and he demands Beist join him. The highlight of the week for me - Coach Beist singing! They perform One Bourbon, One Scotch, One Beer, and chose to use the one by George Thorogood, since he is from Delaware! But certainly a nod to John Lee Hooker here!

Kurt helps Rachel with post-party clean up, and they talk about her "date" with Blaine. They went to see the movie Love Story, and went dressed as the characters. Kurt mentions this was the gayest date ever, but Rachel is hurt, and it turns to the ugly when Kurt says there can be nothing between her and Blaine, and Rachel sets out to prove him wrong.

The Beist is helping Mr. Shu home, both a bit on the drunk side. This is such a sweet moment, and for a change, Shu doesn't ruin it with inappropriate actions. They discuss the kids, and the Alcohol Awareness assembly. Beist goes home, and Shu grades papers, drinking a beer, and finally decides to drunk-dial Emma Stamos, only to be a blabbering mess. Shu wakes up the next morning and goes to school quite hungover, and goes to apologize to Emma, and she doesn't understand. Soon Sue straightens it out for Shu, as he drunk dialed Sue, not Emma. Sue plans to use it against him.

Kurt chats with his father, who is not happy about finding a boy in his son's bed. He thought it was rude of Kurt, and things need to be discussed first. Kurt relents and apologizes, but also asks if his father would learn a bit about gay sex so he could go to his father with any questions he might have. Seems to be a little passive-aggressive behavior flying tonight!

The kids drink a strange concoction of alcohol before going on, and then go out to perform Ke$ha's Tik Tok.

By the end of the performance, Rachel and Santana are vomiting on stage. Sue is soon on the public address system, talks about the Glee club spiraling out of control, led by the drunken exploits of the Mr. Shu. She then plays his drunk dial over the system for all to hear. Including an embarrassed Emma. And a humiliated Mr. Shu.

Principal Figgins calls Shu and the kids to his office, and he congratulates them on a realistic alcohol awareness program! But he does think Shu could use some help with his sex addiction. So, with another bullet dodged, Shu talks to the kids, and says he'd like them to stop drinking, a would like it if they did too. And he asks them to sign an agreement that should they slip up, they will call him and he will drive them home, since no one wants to see them get hurt. Th kids feel all loves and warm and fuzzy, and agree.

Kurt and Rachel are in the cafeteria, and Rachel is preparing to figure out if what she and Blaine had was real, or just the alcohol. As Blaine makes his way over to the table, Rachel jumps up and plants a kiss on his lips. For this scene, we have Carole King singing her ever-popular I Feel The Earth Move.

Blaine thinks a bit, and then announces that he is 100% and completely gay. Rachel is excited, because surely have a boy leave her for another boy is inspiration for her song, right? It seems to be a win-win, although Kurt still remains a bit confused. And still not kissed, is you discount the surprise kiss by the boy who was threatening his life and safety. End scene.

To catch any episodes you might have missed, you can find them online for FREE at Fox On Demand here or on Hulu here.

Hanson - Give A Little - New Video

Bottom pic, L to R: Zac, Isaac and Taylor Hanson.

Isaac, Taylor and Zac, the adorable moppets from the boy band, Hanson have released a new video. And by boy band, it has more to do with the fact that when they had their initial success on the National market, they were mere boys, pre- or barely teen. They are a bit older now, all are married and I think all have a child or children.In fact, Isaac, the eldest, has already turned 30!

Well, the boys have released a video for the song Give A Little. The song can be found on the most recent release, Shout It Out. Much like the song, the music on the album is filled with rock and soul grooves, delivering a little retro feel while keeping the sound fresh and clean.

VH1 TV Shows | Music Videos | Celebrity Photos | News & Gossip

I had posted about the release of the video for Thinking 'Bout Somethin' almost a year ago, and you can find it here. Much like this video, the sheer joy of their music is quite evident, it once again is just an infectious feeling one gets directly from the brothers, and stays with you for some time after hearing them. This is a video of Hanson playing Waiting For This from the Shout It Out album.

For more on Hanson, check out their official website here. You can also check out their MySpace page here. And their music to date is available on iTunes. There are two versions; the regular one for $9.99, and the Deluxe Edition for $11.99.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Dark Monday - La Cage aux Folles

la cage aux folles,John Barrowman

To celebrate Harvey Fierstein going into the cast of Broadway's La Cage Aux Folles, I am reposting this entry from last year.

La Cage aux Folles is a musical with a book by Harvey Fierstein and lyrics and music by Jerry Herman. It was based on the 1973 French play of the same name by Jean Poiret, and focuses on a gay couple: Georges, the manager of a Saint-Tropez nightclub featuring drag entertainment, and Albin, his romantic partner and star attraction. The farcical adventures that ensue when Georges' son, Jean-Michel, brings home his fiancée's ultra-conservative parents to meet them truly allows the show to kick into full-gear.

la cage aux folles,graham norton
la cage aux folles
la cage aux folles

The musical's original 1983 Broadway production received nine nominations for Tony Awards and won six, including Best Musical, Best Score and Best Book. The success of the musical spawned a West End production and several international runs. The 2004 Broadway revival won the Tony Award for Best Revival, and the 2008 London revival garnered the Laurence Olivier Award for Best Musical Revival.

la cage aux folles

The show opens with Georges introducing the Cagelles for the first time. In the original Broadway production, there were at least 2 females in the Cagelles, and they ended this number by taking off their wigs, revealing their sex. This caused some controversy, as many thought it a sell-out move to make the audience more at ease. In subsequent productions, they are played by men. The following clip is from the 2008 London revival.

The show was groundbraking, bing the first Broadway musical to star male lovers. This, of course, was made easier by the success of the French movie of the same name, but was still provocative at the time. Song On The Sand was a beautiful love song, with Georges singing about his love for the star of the drag show and his long-time love, Albin. This clip shows Davis Gaines singing from a 1993 concert, Jerry Herman's Broadway at Holiday Bowl.

The most memorable gon from the show is I Am What I Am, a show-stopper to be sure, as well as an international hit pop/disco for Miss Gloria Gaynor. It is sung by Albin, who flies in the face of societal pressures and proudly proclaims 'Life's not worth a damn 'til I can say world, I am what I am.' George Hearn played it to perfection in the original production, but there was many complaints when he went on the Tony Awards and sang the song in a tuxedo rather than doing the number in drag. In the revival on London's West End, the role of Albin was played by many different stars, including Graham Norton and most recently by John Barrowman. This is a clip from Barrowman's appearance on the Paul O'Grady Show in September, followed by an interview.

The show most certainly broke some barriers for the LGBT community, showing gay men and drag queens to be real people to the musical audience. It might not have suited everyone's taste, but it certainly helped open the minds of many who went to see it. And it gave us I Am What I Am, a song that is a staple at every Gay Pride Parade I have ever seem. The official website of the London revival here.

What's Your Addiction?

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Addiction specialists SIRPAUL, Anthony Callea & Ace Young.

I have been feeling just all kinds of funny lately, and it is affecting me in ways I didn't imagine. You see, after just over 32 years of smoking, I have stopped. When I was sick several weeks ago, I couldn't smoke for a few days. Well, I just decided that seemed like a good plan, and kept it going. So it has been over 5 weeks now, and I will fully admit it has not been the easiest thing I have done in my life. And, I have to say, it seems just as tough now, in a different way, than it did when this all began. I was thinking by week 6, I would not be looking up from typing on my computer, looking to grab a cigarette.

To aid in all this, I purchased a new iPad. I figure it like this: I spent a certain about each week on cigarettes, and applied that money to buying the new electronics. So, I need to go a couple of months to break even, and have the iPad paid for. And, hopefully, some of the addiction will be subsiding.

But it does give me the opportunity to feature three songs I really love, all with "addicted" in the title. I will start with a favorite, SIRPAUL's Addicted. So sexy, so smoky, so delicious.

Another favorite of mine is the good-looking man with the voice of an angel, Anthony Callea. Since I first caught a video of him singing The Prayer on YouTube, I have been hopelessly addicted to his music. I got the CDs, and got the DVD. I would love to hear this talented Aussie sing live, but fear literally traveling to the other side of the world might be a little much. This is Anthony Callea's Addicted To You

As we approach the 10th season of American Idol, I can think back to the handsome young man who grabbed my eye, Ace YOung. Young has certainly been working hard during his career, with stints on Broadway in lead roles in Grease and Hair. And, every year, he is one of the cohosts for the Muscular Dystrophy telethon over Labor Day weekend. He also released a self-titled album, with is pretty damn good. On that album, his first single was the sexy Addicted.

So, one of the side effects of the detox I am going through it a problem with focus or concentration. I find myself staring at the computer screen, not sure what I am going to write, or even what I shall write about. Hopefully, this too shall pass soon. There is some great new music on the horizon, and I hope to be telling you all about it!

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Sunday Morning with The Beatles

I thought it might be ease into the Sunday morning with George, John, Paul and Ringo. That is right, I mean The Beatles! The iconic band of the 60s and 70s, known more, perhaps, for their rock and upbeat songs, had their share of ballads. On of the most love is This Boy, one of my favorite songs, was a B-side in 1963, but showcased the writing of Lennon, McCartney and Harrison.

This video uses the Beatles song Across The Universe, but uses images captured by the Hubble telescope, making this a true intergalactic collaboration. It was written by John Lennon in 1968, and certainly has the lyrical beauty of a Lennon classic.

And, finally, there is the beautiful song In My Life, here done with a video compilation from other sources, but a wonderful tribute to the band and this amazing song. The song was released in 1963, appearing on the Rubber Soul album. Written by Lennon/McCartney, is certainly showcases why their catalog of songs has become iconic.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Saturday Rocks - The Animals

The Animals
The Animals

Formed in 1962 in Newcastle-Upon-Tyne, the original line-up of the group was Eric Burdon on vocals, Alan Price on organ and keyboards, Hilton Valentine on guitar, John Steel on drums, and Bryan "Chas" Chandler on bass. Their wild stage act got them the nickname "animals" and it stuck, and soon The Animals were born. By 1964, they had moved to London and were getting noticed with their strong covers of American R&B and Blues singers like Nina Simone and John Lee Hooker. The timing was just right, as the British Invasion was kicking in full-force in the US, and the band was signed by Columbia Records and on their way. They jumped into the studio and released their self-titled debut in September 1964. From that album sprang their first #1 hit, a traditional blues song, House of the Rising Sun. Although it was covered by many, the Animals were the most successful cover, in terms of sales.

In 1965, they released the Animal Tracks. Interestingly enough, there are two entirely different collections with the same name. The UK version was a collection of blues & rockabilly covers, while the US version included rock and pop singles. The US version of course had the hit Don't Let Me Be Misunderstood, which made it to #15 on the US Pop chart.

The first cut off the Animal Tracks (US) was the iconic We Gotta Get Out of This Place, which made it to #13 on the Billboard Pop chart. The song has gone on to be covered by some of the big names in the last few decades, from Bruce Springsteen to Bon Jovi to Ann Wilson.

Close behind that success, the band released yet another song that is part of rock history. It's My Life had great success in the UK and Canada, but in the US, it only made it to #23 on the chart. However, it had a long, successful run on album-oriented rock stations, who loved the gritty feel.

Finally, in the summer of 1966, the Animals came apart and the new line-up was called Eric Burden & the Animals. The scored big on the charts with the song See See Rider, a rock/blues song that went to #10 on the Billboard Pop chart.

However, not long after this, in the fall of 1996, the group disbanded, and Eric Burden staked a claim to a solo career. So, in just two years of making music on the big stage, the group had added greatly to the rich history of rock music.


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