What is the what what, y'all! As you can tell, it's Gay Pride-palooza today at the Majak Kingdom as we take part in the national "Wear Purple" day in honor of the six gay teens (Tyler Clementi, Asher Brown, Seth Walsh, Justin Aaberg, Raymond Chase and Billy Lucas) who killed themselves due to being bullied. With local stories here in La Crosse of a woman being beaten up for being gay as well as the alleged Oktoberfest tussle between a Riverfest Commodore and a 14-year-old girl over a gay pride flag, we feel like no, more than ever, it's time for a little pride.
So bust out those rainbow bracelets, dust off your copy of James Baldwin's Giovanni's Room and remember to Netflix Love! Valour! Compassion! and prepare yourself for our So Gay Day mix.
First up, that former Ginger Spice Geri Halliwell and her tune "G-A-Y"
We'll admit it right now that when we grow up, we still secretly want to be the endearingly brash Ginger Spice. She may not have had a good singing voice at all, but what she lacked in actual talent she more than made up in gumption. And we appreciate any artist that embraces their gay audience as fully as she and the rest of the Spice Girls did. Though we suppose when you take most of your styling tips from drag queens, one sort of has to.
Bonus, Ginger and the rest of the gals performing our favorite Spice Girls tune "Love Thing" at their very first concert in Istanbul (we still unashamedly have it on VHS thank you very much)
From pop princesses to pop punk, our next song comes from American pop punk outfit Pansy Division and their jubiliant cover of Liz Phair's "Flower"
In college we listened to a lot of Pansy Division. Their song titles were jokey takeoffs on things in the pop culture: "Smells Like Queer Spirit," "Bill and Ted's Homosexual Adventure," "James Bondage." We had to appreciate, in our questioning days, the sheer audacity of Pansy Division not only to be gay but humorously so without making themselves the punchline of the joke. We're pretty sure only Pansy Division could get away with tunes like "The Cocksucker Club" or the ahead of its time "Cowboys Are Frequently, Secretly Fond of Each Other." How that didn't end up on the Brokeback Mountain soundtrack remains a gross oversight.
Up next, The Magnetic Fields and their song "I Thought You Were My Boyfriend," hilariously put over a video of Ryan and Michael from The Office.
Oh fandoms and their love of HoYay! Almost every show on television has some sort of group of fans "shipping" two characters of the same sex together. Some shows ignore the existence of these fans while other shows, usually shows by Josh Schwartz, tend to embrace the Hoyay.
Captain Awesome and Chuck, Chuck
Chuck Bass and pretty much every male he encounters, Gossip Girl
And our favorite Hoyay, Seth and Ryan, The OC
Next on our playlist is Solange's reworking of Kanye West's "Everything I Am," her version more bluntly titled "Fuck the Industry, Signed Sincerely"
"I'll never be picture perfect Beyonce, fly like J.Lo or sing baby like Ashanti" starts Solange as she details everything she is not.
When you're an outsider of any kind, though painting the younger sister of Beyonce as an outsider is something that causes us muscle pain for all the reaching that takes, you just eventually have to acknowledge all the things you're not, accept things you are so you can go forward to be the most stunning, flawless, amazing, wig snatching, etc. person you can be. Wow, that was so saccharine that it deserves a:
And if you want something less sweet, look no further than Ben Folds Five's "One Angry Dwarf and 2,000 Solemn Faces"
If there wasn't a song more tailored for the bullied and picked upon than this, we don't know what it is. We remember when we first heard this song, when Ben Folds was on The Jenny McCarthy Show, and have loved the tune ever since because who hasn't wanted to have that moment sometime in life where you become successful and get to tell your tormentors to kiss your ass goodbye.
Hey you know what. No time like the present. We'll outsource it to the lovely Ms. Tyra Banks.
Wait, wait. We can do better people. Whitney?
Lastly, "Everybody's Free (To Feel Good)"
Because they are. And don't let anybody tell you otherwise.
And in the words of one RuPaul, "If you can’t love yourself, how in the hell are you gonna love somebody else? Can I get an amen in here?”
Let the music play, my lovelies.