Tuesday, June 3, 2008

June is Gay and Lesbian Pride Month.

You know how I do. Every tile in the American mosaic gets acknowledged and appreciated up in here. So let us not ignore Gay and Lesbian Pride Month.

Embedded below are living glimpses of three prominent musical artists who are openly gay: folk/blues performer Toshi Reagon... legendary jazz avant-gardist Cecil Taylor... and old-school vocal stylist Andy Bey.

Please enjoy them.

20 comments:

Thembi said...

I saw Toshi Reagon perform a few weeks ago. She really does have one of the purest voices out there, its touching.
Nice post!

Undercover Black Man said...

Thanks, Thembi. By the way, in my upper-right corner, Pharoah Sanders is performing his tune "Thembi."

Do you know whether you were named after that composition??

John-Paul said...

Didn't know Cecil Taylor is gay. He is an absolutely stunning musician. You know something is genius when you encounter it and you feel like you always knew it, so much that you're surprised you never articulated it yourself. That's how I feel about Taylor's playing. His percussive insanity has meant a lot to me, and I feel like I've always kind of played in that way. I know his musical vision doesn't make its way out of my head too often, but it's a testament to his genius that I feel like it pre-existed in me and a lot of musicians I hear, even ones who probably know nothing about his music.

Anyone reading this who hasn't explored Taylor, pick up Mixed, which is a collection of music by the Cecil Taylor Unit and the Roswell Rudd Sextet. It's a great place to start. The tune Mixed (track 3) will blow you away.

Undercover Black Man said...

^ Thanks for that, John-Paul.

Thembi said...

@UBM

In fact, I was named after that entire album!

Thembi said...

aw man, now I'm all warm and fuzzy. The song makes me imagine my parents in some 70s West Philly apartment picking baby names...thanks!

Undercover Black Man said...

^ Cool! I was hoping so.

New Black Woman said...

I'm glad to see bloggers recognizing June as Gay and Lesbian Pride Month. And thanks for that nice selection of people you chose to focus on!

Undercover Black Man said...

Thank you, New Black Woman.

Wanda said...

Well its also Black Music Month, David. Just something else to keep you busy!

http://tinyurl.com/5qcokd

Undercover Black Man said...

^ Dang, Wanda... I didn't know. I think I can whip up something special, though...

dez said...

I learned it was Black Music Month from iTunes, of all places.

bklyn6 said...

I was in the post office today and noticed all these pictures of notable women in US history. So I thought it must be Women's History month, or something. That's when I remembered that it was Music History Month. I didn't know about Gay and Lesbian Pride Month.

btw June 12th is Loving Day.

Queers United said...

thanks for recognizing gay pride month
http://www.queersunited.blogspot.com

Undercover Black Man said...

^ Thanks for finding it.

mynameismyname said...

Actually Toshi has said that she's bisexual but still, that's openly gay. Meshell Ndegeoecello, Sylvester, the lead singer from the obscure '70s Motown harmony group Dynamic Superiors, Donnie, Joan Armatrading, Frankie Knuckles, Kevin Aviance, Nona Hendryx and Labi Siffre all deserve props too. All wonderful black musicians who happened to be ...openly gay (or bisexual).

Great blog by the way. Huge fan. I always followed you and the other David ...Simon, that is's stuff. Obsessive Wire/Corner fan, here! :-)

Lola Gets said...

IM BLACK AND IM PROUD!
Sorry, just a lil'Black Pride flashback. Ill try and keep them down. And Ill try to finish my damned series, so please come back!
:)

L

PS - Aw, damn, its Black Music Month too...well, perhaps Ill whip something out from my unpublished posts to celebrate....

bklyn6 said...

the lead singer from the obscure '70s Motown harmony group Dynamic Superiors

UBM, didn't you post about Tony Washington awhile back?

Speaking of singers, was Sir Monte Rock III gay?

Undercover Black Man said...

mynameismyname: Thanks for commenting.

I wish there was some high-quality video of Sylvester on YouTube. I looked.

Undercover Black Man said...

UBM, didn't you post about Tony Washington awhile back?

I went looking again for that spectacular "Soul Train" clip of "Shoe Shoe Shine," Bklyn6... but it was taken off of YouTube by the copyright police, on behalf of Don Cornelius Productions.

(Not a stone gas, Mr. Cornelius. Not a stone gas at all.)