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

The Advocate Guide to Music '97

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

The Advocate Guide to Music '97

Article excerpt

So what's your favorite gay diva up to these days? Here's a peek at how k.d., Elton, and RuPaul plan to rock our world this spring

As more out lesbian and gay musicians achieve national recognition, the industry's wealth of gay talent becomes easier to celebrate. Sure, there's no Gaylapalooza music festival yet, but if there were, here are the folks you'd be clapping for, dude.

Marc Almond: Soft Cell's former singer is between recording labels at the moment. But in late summer, look for limited-edition vinyl releases of two of his early solo projects, including 1986's Violent Silence.

Boy George: In late May the British pop star kicks off an international tour in the Philippines, with stops in Moscow, Hong Kong, Dubai, and the United Kingdom. Of course, the biggest news on the Boy George career front is that the BBC has just optioned the film rights to his autobiography Take It Like a Man.

Ani DiFranco: With the April release of her double-CD live set, Living in Clip, Buffalo, N.Y.'s most famous bisexual is set to tour Europe this summer.

Erasure: Having just signed with Madonna's hot Maverick label, the pioneering British techno-pop band heads out on a national tour in support of its new release, Cowboy.

Melissa Etheridge: Although filming of the Janis Joplin biopic in which Etheridge is set to star was scheduled to begin this spring, those plans have been postponed. For the time being, the rock queen, along with co-mom Julie Cypher, is bringing up baby.

Extra Fancy: Despite the band's recent label woes (Atlantic dumped them in 1996), front man Brian Grillo and company are continuing to perform--and record: After having released their homegrown five-song EP cassette Christmastime last winter, the band heads back into the studio to record five more songs this summer.

Melissa Ferrick: In a scenario reminiscent of Extra Fancy's, Atlantic Records dropped Ferrick last year. But the out singer-songwriter has just signed with Hollywood's highest-profile openly gay manager, Sandy Gallin.

Hole: Despite Courtney Love's recent transformation from grunge queen to Hollywood princess, the band's long-awaited follow-up to its 1994 smash hit Live Through This should hit stores this fall. The group, featuring out lesbian drummer Patty Schemel, has headed back into the studio, with Smashing Pumpkin Billy Corgan, a longtime friend and former beau of Love's, handling most of the album's producing tasks.

Imperial Teen: As the critically acclaimed side project of Faith No More's out keyboardist Roddy Bottum, the Los Angeles-based band has written 13 new songs and completed a two-week headline engagement in Paris as well as a West Coast tour back home with alterna-fave Dinosaur Jr. A national tour is in the works for this summer, but scheduling is contingent upon the success of Faith No More's new CD, Album of the Year, which hits stores in June.

Elton John: The pop star-turned-AIDS activist just celebrated his 50th birthday (how old does that make us?) and is gearing up for the fall release of his latest CD, not to mention the stateside screening of boyfriend David Furnish's documentary on him, Tantrums and Tiaras. Plans for two Hong Kong dates this summer were canceled after mainland China's red tape proved too troublesome.

k.d. lang: The budding TV star [see review on page 73] joins Rod Stewart, Seal, and Steve Winwood in a live concert for worldwide broadcast at London's Wembley Stadium August 16 to celebrate the hit songs of the rock era. She's also hard at work on her next album, which, she told gossip columnist Liz Smith in February, will contain some of the "smokiest" songs ever written: "My inspirations go back to those classic Frank Sinatra albums that you would play over and over again on a Saturday night."

Luscious Jackson: Hot on the heels of their second full-length CD, Fever In, Fever Out, the all-grrrl punk-funk band featuring lesbian drummer Kate Schellenback tours Europe this summer and returns to the States in July. …

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