Magazine article The Advocate (The national gay & lesbian newsmagazine)

The Mumps

Magazine article The Advocate (The national gay & lesbian newsmagazine)

The Mumps

Article excerpt

How I Saved the World * Sympathy for the Record Industry

Why weren't the Mumps huge stars? Lance Loud, the out gay front man (and future Advocate columnist) of the New York 70s punk quintet was already a household name due to his pivotal role in the PBS documentary An American Family. But his musical career was anything but a cheap cash-in on fringe celebrity status. Sure, Loud gleefully hit bum notes that would give the American Idol judges conniptions, but the Mumps' songs, composed by Loud and queer cohort Kristian Hoffman, were genuinely clever, spoofing pop culture conventions ("Brain Massage" lampoons consciousness-raising fads) while drawing on everything from British music hall to glitter rock for inspiration.

Members of Blondie, Devo, and the Go-Go's numbered among their fans, yet during their original mid '70s run Mumps cut only two independent singles, including the chugging classic "Crocodile Tears." (According to legend, the band blew a big record deal when Lance declined to blow a big record executive. …

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