I have work by the Pet Shop Boys: Please, Further Listening, Disco tucked into a couple of mp3 collections. One mainly of The Boys & the other of 80’s dance music that includes Gino Soccio: Outline; Patrick Cowley: Mind Warp; The Style Council: Our Favorite Shop; Rick Astely: Whenever You Need Somebody; Human League: Dare & a few tracks by The Trampps: Disco Inferno/Body Contact; Village People: Macho Man/I Am What I Am.
As much as I was thrilled by the Village People & their play on imagery their music only held me on the dance floor & even then I was so quickly bored by YMCA I don’t care if I ever hear it again. I had the lps for a while but the only cuts that speak to me are the ones I kept. The Trampps – a fine set of singers in tight, red velvet pant suits on their lp cover – lots of well set off packages to enjoy & Disco Inferno was sensational for dancing to (plus inspired Boogie Inferno: my tribute to disco).
A friend of mine had that first Pet Shop Boys lp & I made a cassette tape copy that I eventually replaced with mp3 & added a couple of eps of remixes. It was always great to hear them on the dance floor knowing they were open about being queer. They had some political thread in their lyrics but weren’t out to preach but to teach you to dance.
Gino Soccio: Outline; Patrick Cowley: Mind Warp. Both of these are studio bound works by gay men felled by HIV far too early in their careers. Longish but driven dance music that I loved. Outline is almost hypnotic – very much like Richie Hawten. Cowley is synthesizer driven. His gay porn soundtracks were recently found & released. School Dazed. Great stuff. Whenever I have Patrick on my iPod I feel like I walking down the street in some porn movie where I get accidentally squirted by a shirtless guy watering his lawn & have to dry my stuff in his house.
Human League – just a waitress – a fine fine story telling dance single – even if they weren’t queer the sensibility certainly was; I was crazy for Rock Astley first few singles – that voice, that production. His hit ‘Whenever You Need Someone’ was the soundtrack for a crush I had at the time & everything I hear it I remember that sweet man, not Rick, but my crush who was murdered by HIV.
Style Council is the odd man out here – not dance music, not even queer but certainly of the period & this is a great lp. smart lyrics, fun & sort up-dated Kinks.
a sample from a novel still simmering:
“So how was the trip?”
Mike didn’t know where to begin. Meggan had looked after his house and garden while he was out of town.
“I know. I read in the paper about that explosion. Imagine a bomb at the film festival. People sure take their movies seriously, don’t they? Anyway everything is fine here. Your mail is there in the living-room.”
Mike hadn’t been in the door five minutes before Meggan had called on him. She must have been watching from her living-room window for him to arrive. He hadn’t even had a chance to take off his jacket.
“And I got the stuff on your shopping list. Milk. Bread. The garden is looking good. The nasturtiums really took off this year didn’t they. Well, I guess you were right in over-planting them. I should get out of here, let you get settled back in. I’ll drop by later.”
“I love it. You know that. Gives me a chance to get out of my own little house.”
Meggan lived two houses down from him. Mike sometimes felt he should swap with her as his house was bigger, much bigger, too big for one man, alone. More room for her, her son, daughter and uncountable cats, sometimes a dog or two.
She was gone.
He took his coat off. Went to to the kitchen and filled the kettle, put it on the stove. He hadn’t had a nice cup of tea for weeks, for an eternity it seemed.
Patrick. Robert. Sam. Faces, touches. The blur of leaving without knowing, without being able to do anything but leave. Even if he’d had the financial resources he didn’t have the information, the know what to do-ed-ness, to find out what had become of Robert.
That the police somehow thought he was the target for the bombing was stupid. No one knew him. He was just some gay shlub from the east coast. A nobody. A nothing in that city. He didn’t even know why the police thought he might have been the target. What piece of information did they have that would have lead them to think that? What? They wouldn’t tell him anything.
He had to be back in Halifax for the start of the school term. Back to the grind but until he knew knew just what the fuck was going on he knew he wouldn’t be of much use in the grind.
He looked through the pile of mail.
Last year’s queer music blogs:
June 2 Billy Strayhorn http://wp.me/p1RtxU-L0
June 9 ‘Hangin’ On The Telephone’ http://wp.me/p1RtxU-Ll
June 16 Tea Room Tramps http://wp.me/p1RtxU-Mg
June 23 Ned Rorem http://wp.me/p1RtxU-Mx
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