Sunday, June 8, 2014

Blast from the Past: Gay Anthems, Part II

Since we're still early in June, which is Gay Pride month, and it's The Other Half's birthday, I thought I'd continue with the theme of "gay anthems," those you don't have to be gay. . .but it couldn't hurt! -type songs. Of course, there are so many to choose from, I didn't have room for all of them last week anyway. Let's get started.

1. Smalltown Boy by Bronski Beat (1984) - I'll confess to missing this one, having been firmly stuck on top-40 music at the time, and only 18. Still, my younger (straight) brother insisted that it get a spot this week! Apparently, it was really, really gay.
2. Express Yourself by Madonna (1989) - One of Madge's best, and certainly her most stylish video.

3. You Spin Me 'Round (Like a Record) by Dead or Alive (1985) - Pete Burns was like the sinister Boy George, and this song was everywhere in 1985.
4. Brand New Lover by Dead or Alive (1986) - Just as fun as the previous tune.

5. No More Tears (Enough is Enough) by Barbra Streisand and Donna Summer (1979) - I mean, like you could get these divas together, and it not be a gay anthem? Unfortunately, there is no video. But that note Babs holds? Fabulous.
6. Believe by Cher (1998) - About time Cher made an appearance, right? And at the time, people were marveling at her longevity. . .16 years ago.

7. Lady Marmalade by LaBelle (1974) - Sure, the Christina Aguilera/P!nk/Li'l Kim/Mya cover version might qualify, but this is the classic original, and even burst on the scene before disco really went mainstream.
8. True Colors by Cyndi Lauper (1985) - When I think of a gay anthem, I think "upbeat," but there can be no denying this one has it's place in our big gay hearts.

9. Beautiful by Christina Aguilera (2002) - Much like the previous entry, this ballad is on the list, even if it's a bit sad. It's the defiance that sells it.
10. We are Family by Sister Sledge (1979) - But we've got to get it back to a dance party, right? And why this one didn't occur to me last time, I have no idea. So, let's dance this weekend out!

And I still left out any Donna Summer solo songs, and countless others. Maybe we'll revisit this party to close out the month. Happy Monday, everybody.


  1. Oh, here's another that was gigantic at the gay clubs: Army of Lovers - Crucified (1991). Also check out Bronski Beat - Why? (a lot of their songs were about being a gay man in a conservative England), Divine - Walk Like A Man, Pet Shop Boys - It's A Sin (yes, many of their songs could be on this list, but this one's subject matter deals directly with the "taboo" of being gay), Culture Club - Do You Really Want To Hurt Me, and the 1994 "gem:" Coming Out Crew - Free, Gay and Happy.

  2. Yeah, "Why?" I knew later, though not at the time. Most of the rest (except Army of Lovers and Coming Out Crew) were noodling around in the back of my mind. I have three or four "Glad to be Gay" type compilation albums from the mid-90s that have a lot of that stuff, including Eartha Kitt, Communards, Right Said Fred, Boys Town Gang, Soft Cell and this one:

    Thanks for your suggestions! --Jamie


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