Some of the boys at GAYLETTER are obsessed with this band, Patrick, one of our magazine editors told me that I must include them in this letter. I was already considering it, but he convinced me: “they are intense and weird...I like that they are danceable but also punk rock...they are dark and real and talk about hating their bodies…” They are also under the label of one of our favorite musicians JD Samson, who’s gonna be djing before their performance along with Ryan Smith (Wrecked) and Cartel (Body). Macy Rodman (from the party Bathsalts) will be taking care of the door. Bottoms (I mean you gotta love that name!) are celebrating the release of their EP ‘Goodbye.’ With all these people involved it’s guaranteed to be a super fun night. Here is what their FB page says about the band in case you’ve never heard of them: “Bottoms are a gender-problematizing goth dance band, made up of Simon Leahy, Michael Prommasit, and Jake Dibeler. Leahy, co-founder of the annual Bushwig festival, spearheaded the new “drag explosion” in the Bushwick nightlife scene. Leahy’s prior band, t3eth, has toured internationally.” Ok, enough said. Bring on the Bottoms!
Winter can be SUCH a drag. But just as the post-holiday blues are setting in, RuPaul’s Drag Race is back to lift you right up. That’s right, honey. Season 7 is officially here, and you’re invited to kick it off on January 23, 2015 with the NYC Pep Rally.
RPDR Season 7 is already promising to give us something different. Ru has traded in the glitter and sequins of seasons past for a much more minimal look, with a crop of diverse and quirky queens.
“This year we have some of the youngest and oldest contestants in RuPaul’s Drag Race herstory,” RuPaul said in a statement. “Study each queen closely. Do not underestimate anyone. The girls that make it to the top this season will shock you.” Oh yas, mama. C’mon!
Presented by Brandon Voss & KennyKenny, tonight’s event will feature performances by the three New York queens: Mrs. Kasha Davis, Miss Fame, and Pearl. Each lady is giving us upstate, uptown, and downtown, respectively. Lady Bunny and Valissa Yoe will be DJing, and Milk will be the hostess for the evening.
It’s all going down at Fever Fridays at The Attic Rooftop & Lounge in Hell’s Kitchen. Sponsored cocktails will be served from 10:30-11:30PM.
And, if you haven’t already, get to know your NY ladies in Logo’s “Meet the Queens” videos here.
The French, former porn star, actor and director François Sagat is launching his clothing label Kick Sagat this Thursday, January 22 at International Playground at 463 Broome St. from 7:00PM-9:00PM — and yes! Francois will be in attendance. We are so excited to see this man in person, we’ve been counting the hours. Although we might not recognize him with clothes on.
The event will be hosted by Becca McCharen of Chromat and Sonia Agostino. DJ for the night is Christine Tran of Witches. Expect Champagne, hopefully half-naked men and lots of queens running around trying to get a photo next to Sagat’s ass.
Afterwards, for only $5, you can join the after-party celebration at 10:00PM at Eastern Bloc (505 East 5th St.) with music by Casey Spooner and Frankie Sharp. Hosts for the evening include Mickey Boardman, Gio Black Peter and Melissa Burns. This is gonna be one hell of a sexy event!
Usually I have plenty of time to write posts for the newsletter but today I am on a tight deadline so I’ll get right to the point: Boy Meets Girl is nothing short of ground breaking. It stars a first time transgender actress Michelle Hendry in the lead role as a small town Kentucky girl named Ricky who has dreams of coming to NYC and becoming a top women’s fashion designer. She has a hot, hot, hot, straight best friend named Robby, played by Twilight star Michael Welch, who has a few secrets up his sleeve where his feelings for Rickie are concerned. Throw into the mix a beautiful new girl in town with a fiancee in Iraq and a penchant for exploring her lesbian tendencies with Rickie and you have a top notch film. What starts off as an innocent “after school special” sort of film turns into a revolutionary coming-of-age romantic comedy that, “explores how falling in love transcends gender and how important it is to live a courageous life without fear standing in the way of your dream.” There’s even a startling “Crying Game” secret reveal half way through the film! The screening is free, hosted by PFLAG and the JCC Manhattan and followed by a Q&A with the talented director Eric Schaeffer. If you miss it, not to worry it opens in Manhattan Feb 6.
Gay men have a language all of their own. Or so suggests Hal Fischer in his series Gay Semiotics, on view at Cherry & Martin Gallery in Culver City, California until February 21. Fischer photographed men on the prowl in the Castro and Haight Ashbury districts of San Francisco in 1977 as part of a tongue-in-cheek photo essay, labeling the elements of each man’s outfit as part of elaborate cruising codes. The result is a conceptual look at the “gay uniform.” It explains how totally ordinary items in the straight world like handkerchiefs and keychains, when worn in the street by gay men, tell other men about the wearer’s sexual fetishes.
The “semiotics” in the series title refers to semiotic theory, which claims that images and even objects — like words — carry abstract, symbolic meaning. A close-cropped photograph of two asses clad in tight jeans with handkerchiefs in opposite pockets explains the semiotics of “Gay Hanky Code:” “A blue handkerchief placed in the right hip pocket serves notice that the wearer desires to play the passive role during sexual intercourse,” and so on. Other more traditional portraits are broken into types: the Street Fashion Jock in labeled satin gym shorts and Adidas, the Street Fashion Leather in chaps and leather boots, the Street Fashion Basic Gay in flannel shirt and Levis. By merging gay subcultures with art theory, Fischer pulls conceptual photography out of the museum and into the streets (and the back alleys).
The black and white images of mustachioed leathermen in high-wasted flare jeans feel a little dated, maybe because cruising has gone digital. In today’s gayborhoods, though, uniforms have changed but are still in fashion. Fischer’s exhibition is actually timely: it makes us ask how our rapidly evolving hook-up culture has changed the way we communicate and express ourselves in public spaces.
How cute is this? A celebration at Lincoln Center of everything Sesame Street. The show has been on the air (around the world) for 45 years. That’s impressive. I grew up watching the show as kid, all the way on the other side of the planet in Melbourne, Australia. I loved me some Big Bird (pictured), Ernie and Bert, Cookie Monster, I even had a soft spot for Grouch. This exhibition at the Lincoln Center Library for the Performing Arts, includes “250 items related to the show and its production, including many of its stars: The original Elmo, Bert, Ernie, Count, and Oscar the Grouch will be on display, along with other televised Muppets. See iconic props (“rubber duckie, you’re the one…”) and pose with replicas of the lamppost and front steps of 123 Sesame Street.” This show is about as Instagram ready as it gets! If you see Snuffleupagus, make sure to say hi from us — you never know when that flaky queen will show up.
Tangled in my sheets and lying on your back, I watch you turn to greet the soft light of a sun that has just begun to rise. Your body is still asleep, but your mind is so awake. I keep a box of photos by my bedside, relics of the ancient civilizations of me, Incarnations of self like all of the cities I’ve set fire to — and I show them to you sparingly. Photos of the life I lived before you, back when I had bruised lips and hips and knees that knocked when I walked. Back when everything in my life was a habitual as breathing. And I have never been too easily satiated. Things that take a little with others seem to take a lot with me. I’ve spent the formative years of my youth wondering why nobody told me growing up would be so hard. A master at placing the blame, I’ve been running in circles and howling at a starless sky.
I’m spending the final years of my youth wondering why nobody told me falling in love could be so easy. An amateur at real feelings, I am breaking down my walls and my thick skin, howling at the moon in Texas. I am far from that person now. Rolling over in the morning, twisting in my slutty white sheets, I pull you closer and I am far nearer to the person I could be.
That magic, it’s a head rush. It’s a high that the drugs can’t match. A dream of elsewhere, I can feel it in my bones and my heart. It’s a lot like happiness. It’s a lot like hope. It reminds me of the last glowing ember of yet another city in the dust at the end of summer. Hot winds and habitual hauntings. A sixteen-hour dream state that breeds a new kind of fire. It’s one of those things you can feel but can’t see. Like wind. Like love. Like ghosts.
This is one of the coolest events happening in New York City this week and I don’t care if you don’t agree with me. The hyper-masculine world of Japanese gay Manga comes to one of our favorite bookstores in NYC, McNally Jackson Books. They are hosting the event Massive: Gay Erotic Manga and the Men Who Make It — which is “a survey introduction to a diverse and important group of men responsible for some of the most emblematic gay manga drawn for fellow gay (and non-gay!) readers.” Some editors and designers behind the anthology will be in attendance including Anne Ishii - Massive, editor and the publisher of The Passion of Gengoroh Tagame, Graham Kolbeins, editor and designer at MASSIVE, a super cool label inspired by Japanese gay art, and Chip Kidd (just google him, he’s famous). The book signing starts at 7:00PM and according to the press release there’s something for everyone: “as the book also provides a rich background to each of the artists and a brief history of gay erotic arts and illustration.” See you there.
Scenes from the weekly party presented by Kayvon Zand and Kenny Kenny
Believe it or not, it’s the 25th anniversary of Jennie Livingston’s iconic documentary Paris is Burning. Yes honey, the children who carried on back in the 80’s in the Harlem drag balls have aged a bit but their fierce determination, style, compassion and joy have not. To commemorate this momentous cinematic moment the New York Jewish Film Festival presented by the Jewish Museum and the Film Society of Lincoln Center is screening the movie (Jennie the filmmaker is Jewish even though the content is decidedly not). For those that don’t know, or were born too late to know, the documentary, “chronicles the ball culture and the African American, Latino, gay and transgender communities involved in it.” The film includes footage of the actual ball scene, (yes Voguing, reading et al.) as well as interviews with several legendary house members including Pepper LaBeija, Dorian Corey, Angie Xtravaganza and Willi Ninja. I’ve seen the movie at least 5 times and still can’t believe how fresh and relevant it is — dealing with the adversity of racism, homophobia, AIDS and poverty all of which resonate loud and clear to this day. Don’t miss this screening, I know it will be EVERYTHING. And that’s the read!