September 2004
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Songs I've Been Meaning To Play

...by Male artists

Playlist      

Walter Mayes - Johnny Get Angry (1998)
From "Love Is A Drag" - my man (1962)
Zebedy Colt - The Man I Love (1969)
Zebedy Colt - I'm In Love With A Wonderful Guy (1969)
Mickey - If He Walked Into My Life (1975)
Teddy Boys - He Only Goes Out With Boys (1980)
Rubettes - Under One Roof (1976)
JP West - Jimmy Don't Need Me Anymore (1985)
Jonathan King - I Don't Want To Be Gay (1971)
Jonathan King - Be Gay (1973)
Jonathan King - He's So Fine (1975)
Brothers Butch - Kay, Why? (1967)
Ted Fox - When We Were Friends (1992)
PF Sloan - He's Just That Kind of Guy (1965)
David Sereda - Underage Blues (1981)
David Sereda - Mark (1981)
David Sereda - Powerful Love (1994)

Read the script for the show...

Artist Sites
Jonathan King Official Site
More on Jonathan King
JK News Coverage, 11/2000
JK News Coverage, 12/2001

 

"Stranger Than Fiction"

Walter Mayes, not a singer

Above, author of children's books, Walter Mayes, was just one of the writers coerced into singing on the various artists comp from 1998, called "Stranger Than Fiction."

Salute to Early Queer Cabaret

According to my research the earliest example of this was an album called "Mad About The Boy," issued by the Camp Records label in the mid-60s. I featured that label very thoroughly on my March of 2003 show, so tonight I'm honoring some of the other early efforts.

Love Is A Drag

In 1962 an album was released called "Love Is A Drag," and it was subtitled "For Adult Listeners Only." Among its songs were "Mad About the Boy," "Can't Help Lovin' That Man," "Lover Man," and "Bill." From the album jacket: "At long last a male vocalist with great talent has decided to take the big step-that is, to record the classics using their original lyrics. In doing so, he has broken the barrier which has confronted so many other great singers who, for lack of courage, have not attempted." Click for More on "Love Is A Drag."

"Love Is A Drag"

Late Addition (March 2012): Interview with this LP's Producer, solving the mystery

Zebedy Colt's "I'll Sing For You"

The next album was released in late 1969, and this time the artist did identify himself, though he used a stage name. Under the name Edward Earle he was a Broadway actor, director, songwriter and choreographer. And for the cabaret album he went by the name Zebedy Colt. The album was called "I'll Sing For You" and was recorded with the London Philharmonic Orchestra. According to an interview in The Advocate in 1977 he was working with a record producer who wanted to do an album using the stereotypical limp-wristed approach, and it was Zebedy Colt's idea to record it without camping it up. The album is a collector's item, and was even reissued within a short time with a different cover, and retitled "Zebedy Sings For You."

Click Here for much more into on Zebedy Colt.

first pressing, "I'll Sing For You"   second pressing, "I'll Sing For You"

Zebedy Colt  Zebedy Colt  Zebedy Colt, still from a porn film

Above, three shots of Zebedy Colt, the last from one of his porn movies

This Is Me...Mickey

Perhaps a "vanity recording," perhaps an honest effort...whatever the case, Mickey's 1975 album was one of the earliest cabaret albums with male-to-male pronouns. His name does not appear on the album, but I learned it from a magazine interview from that time. On the album jacket it says, "Dear Friends, I'd like to dedicate this album to gay people everywhere. It's my story, an honest story about gay life and love, the beauty, the heartaches. This is my life, perhaps it's yours. This is me…Mickey." He intros each track in sort of a Rod McKuen style, which may have been heartfelt, but now comes across as camp. Click Here to see more on Mickey

This is Me...Mickey

Click to hear all three of these early queer cabaret albums in entirety

Teddy Boys  JP West

Above, the Teddy Boys from Canada included the song "He Only Goes Out With Boys" on their 1980 album, "On Air." And JP West from Sweden sang that "Jimmy (Don't Need Me Anymore)" in 1985. In 1976, from the UK the Rubettes sang about a runaway teen being taken in by a drag queen, in "Under One Roof." This was a strange record for a powerpop group to release. They had a top 40 hit in the US in 1974 with "Sugar Baby Love." It reached #1 in the UK and other big hits there were "Tonight," "Juke Box Jive," and my favorite, "I Can Do It."

Rubettes  Rubettes

Below, in the 70s & 80s Jonathan King had a mega career in the UK producing records, and several of his songs touched obliquely on his being gay. He entered prison in 2001 for child molestation. See the sites in the Links section above for more into on his rise and fall.

oddly, "Gay Girl" was not lyrically gay, but it does have a great pic sleeve  "Pandora's Box," 1973

Brothers Butch  

I've no info on the Brothers Butch, except that their delightful 45 was released in the UK in 1967. Their double-entendres are clearer when you check out the picture sleeve. Click for larger scans.

  

His excellent cassette tape was issued in 1992 out of Taos, New Mexico.

2 LPs by PF Sloan  PF Sloan  a PF Sloan LP and one as a member of the Fantastic Baggys

On this month's show I was pleased to play a demo by PF Sloan, called "He's Just That Kind of Guy." Thanks to my friend David Young, of Seattle, for providing it to me. Sloan, as far as I know, was (is) not gay, and it was common in the 60s for songwriters to sing on their own demos, in order to interest other artists in recording them. So the gender was of no consequence; they were showing the artist how it could be sung. While PF Sloan had no hits with his own recordings, he and his writing partner, Steve Barri, struck gold many times, and even briefly were in a Beach Boys-type surf group, called the Fantastic Baggys, that seemed to have more success out of the US.

David Sereda

Canadian artist David Sereda is a favorite of mine, starting with his 1981 album "Chivalry Lives" and the wonderful songs it contains, like "Underage Blues" and "Mark." His album "The Blue Guide" was released twice, in 1994 and 1996, and the latter edition contains an additional version of his anthemic "Powerful Love," and, apparently, a haircut...:) He has had one other release, "The Price of Love," on cassette in 1985, which I have on tape from a friend, wish I had an original.

  

Click to see David Sereda Press Kit, 1981