(This is Day 2 of the blog-a-day challenge. See previous entry for more information.)
Today is (inter)national Coming Out Day. It’s one of those days that is important for everyone, whether you identify as bisexual, transgender, lesbian, gay, queer, or anywhere under the queer umbrella. It’s a day where we under that umbrella can feel proud that we have grown up into the wonderful, colorful people that we’ve become and feel good about loving who we want to love. Because ultimately, love is a driving force in our society. Our relationships, our friendships–these are the elements that help keep us going. It’s not the money. It’s not the stuff. It’s the people. Whether you admit it or not.
To everyone who identifies under the spectrum of the queer umbrella–YOU ROCK. Today is your day. Celebrate yourself. If you haven’t already come out of the closet and can safely do so today, DO IT. What are you waiting for? There is no time like the present to embrace yourself. If you cannot safely come out of the closet, remember that there are resources for you to access and people to talk to. You don’t have to tread the path alone.
In the spirit of the day, I’m going to come out. Depending on how you look at it, I’ve been out as a bisexual for a good four years. The levels of “out” have definitely been varied. I’ve been out to my friends far longer than my family. It’s easier sometimes. In my experience, friends have been a lot easier to share the information with. They don’t have the expectations that families often have. I am currently in a relationship with a woman, but have dated both men and women. Let me put it this way. I enjoy people. Gender is about as relevant as hair color. What matters to me when I am considering dating someone is who they are. What do they like? What passions drive them? Can we spend hours on end in deep conversation? Can we relate on some deeper level? These are the things that matter to me. Call me biased all you want, but I think bisexuality is the real home of romanticism.
Also in the spirit of the day, I’ve decided to create a queer positive music video playlist. Music by bands/musicians who are not only out in the music scene, but refuse to stay quiet about it. Music is an art form that on one hand transcends labels–a good song is a good song no matter how the artist identifies/what s/he believes. Yet at the same time, we as a music audience often look to find ourselves reflected in what we consume. I know that I enjoy a good revolutionary anthem. So here you go. This will be part one what is sure to be an epic playlist. Make sure to bookmark the page if you can’t watch all of them and check back tomorrow for more videos! Enjoy!
1) Athens Boys Choir: “Fagette”–The Athens Boys Choir–despite the name–is a one man proect featuring spoken word artist/musician Katz. He travels the country speaking the “good word” and throws down hard hitting spoken-word pieces that deal with the issues of gender, politics, love, sex and everything in between.
2) Team Gina: “Butch/Femme”–Team Gina was made up of two fierce femmes: GINA BLING and GINA GENIUS and was a performance art pop duo combining dance music with feminist analysis and queer content. While Team Gina disbanded in 2010, you can still find Gina Young doing her thing.
3) Hunx & His Punx: “Lovers Lane”–Hunx and His Punx might be the first ever “girl group” fronted by a flamboyant gay male whose dream in life is to sound like a girl. They have created a unique new sound they refer to as “Young Oldies,” a mixture of 50s teenage rock ‘n’ roll, 60s girl groups and bubblegum pop.
4) Joan Jett: “AC/DC”– If I have to tell you anything about Joan Jett…well then, you haven’t been paying attention. Jett’s been one of the most influential women rockers and from the Runaways to her solo projects to her label, Blackheart Records, she knows how to get around and get her name recognized. The real question we must ask as human beings on this planet is this: What would Joan Jett do? And given that question and this video, it’s clear that bisexuality is definitely okay!
5) Lesbians on Ecstasy: “Sedition”–Lesbians on Ecstasy is one of those bands who were thoroughly underrecognized in their time. Combining efforts to create dark, irresistible dance/club tunes out of old school lesbian protest anthems, they created something magic. Check it out for yourself with this video. And just remember, the lesbians are totally coming! Watch out!
6) The Cliks: “Dirty King” The Cliks are the brainchild of frontman Lucas Silveira. In 2004 he took the dive away from his singer/songwriter roots and created a band whose mantra was change. Lucas remains the only constant member in the Cliks, while others act as a collective force which finds a home in the new and edgier/rock based material–for a time. Silveira is an out trans man and activist.