Tag Archives: gay kiss

2011 ➤ Other picky people’s year-ending Best Ofs in music of all styles


AllMediaNY.com offers the next step in the evolution of modern journalism — “free media” — an outlet where journalists and readers together decide on what is newsworthy and what is not. Editor-in-Chief Drew Kolar says it was “a great year for real music”, sadly marred by the death of Amy Winehouse.


❏ At Drowned in Sound Wendy Roby whittles her year’s reviewing down to a top 50 “that really struck me”, starting at Africa Hitech’s Do U Really Wanna Fight, via Metronomy’s The Look and ending on Jamie Woon’s Lady Luck.


Rihanna — We Found Love feat. Calvin Harris.


❏ An hour’s-worth of vintage sounds mixed by former Blitz Club deejay Rusty Egan: “Some lost classics here plus some bands born in the 80s that sound like they wrote and recorded the songs in the 80s.”


Great Day In Harlem,photography,Art Kane, Esquire ,jazz,Count Basie,documentary
A Great Day In Harlem (1995) — “A must for any serious black music aficionado,” writes Zeitgeist-Meister Sullivan at RedBull.com. This documentary by Jean Bach tells the story of one summer’s day in 1958 when 57 musicians from jazz history met at 126th Street in Harlem to have their picture taken by Art Kane for Esquire magazine. Keen eyes will spot such greats as Horace Silver, Charles Mingus, Coleman Hawkins, Thelonious Monk, English-born Marian McPartland OBE, Sonny Rollins, Lester Young, Gerry Mulligan, Roy Eldridge, Dizzy Gillespie and Count Basie. Kane called it “the greatest picture of that era of musicians ever taken”.


❏ The video for Firework not only outraged British TV stations into censoring the gay kiss, but it then won Video of the Year at the MTV Video Music Awards. Result: the single remained in the UK charts for 58 weeks, way longer than in Billboard’s.


❏ A refreshing selection of five CDs and five gigs from 2011 offered at The Jazz Breakfast by a much-lauded British drummer/percussionist currently studying at the Royal Academy of Music after graduating from Birmingham Conservatoire. Listen to clips from his own quintet’s imminent album Unconventional at Soundcloud.


Nile Rodgers, books,Le Freak, Upside Down Story, disco, autobiography
❏ A broad survey of the year’s music books by the Evening Standard’s David Smyth reveals that in his collected lyrics Jarvis Cocker says “seeing a lyric in print is like watching the TV with the sound turned down: you’re only getting half the story”… Le Freak: An Upside Down Story of Family, Disco and Destiny gives us a tour of the fascinating life story of Nile Rodgers [pictured] — conceived when his mother was 13, raised by beatniks who’d have Thelonious Monk over, he joined the Black Panthers and jammed with Jimi Hendrix, all before he wrote a vast collection of mega-hits, virtually lived in Studio 54’s bathroom and produced Madonna and David Bowie.


PopJustice’s 2011 In Review asks singer Will Young: As a notorious homosexual, did you feel empowered by Born This Way by Lady Gaga?
Will replies: “When it came on the radio I thought ‘She’s basically written this song for me’. Amazing. I actually think I shed a tear as I was driving up to Wales. I stopped at a petrol station and I thought ‘You know what, I don’t care what they think’ and I brought some pink bon bons. Normally I would just go for a Wispa.”


Tightrope by Janelle Monáe feat. Big Boi — “Amazing. Here’s to a year to remember, like 1981 only better!” says Spandau’s sax player Steve Norman.

➢ Don’t miss: Other picky people’s year-ending
Best Ofs from fashion, TV, web and film


➤ Katy’s Firework finally falls to earth but the gay kiss will live happily ever after

Katy Perry, Firework, pop video, censorship,gay kiss,MTV, awards

Fireworks in Firework: British TV viewers see only a pixelated version

❚ YESTERDAY KATY PERRY’S SINGLE FIREWORK finally fell out of the UK singles chart after 58 weeks, having left the US Billboard Hot 100 last July after 39 weeks, and selling 4.7m copies in the US. To date, the video has been viewed 253m times on YouTube, and picked up MTV’s video of the year award.

Despite depicting fireworks shooting from Perry’s chest, this daft yet lavish and cinematic promo video shot in Hungary was censored for British television because it captured the fleeting kiss shown above between two young men. Yet many another video has failed to raise such outrage. A year ago when Firework had reached No 4 in the UK chart, Shapersofthe80s went in search of 20 gay kisses in pop that did make it past the censor.

The UK leg of Katy Perry’s California Dreams Tour 2011 returned to the UK at Sheffield in October and ended in Dublin this week.

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➤ 20 gay kisses in pop videos that made it past the censor

❚ CENSORSHIP! OH DEARIE ME! Digital Spy reports this weekend that the lavish video for Firework — the single currently No 4 in this week’s UK chart by American singer-songwriter Katy Perry — has been censored for British television channels. The ludicrous widescreen promo, which they say “plays out the song’s message of self-belief” (yuk), shows fireworks shooting from Perry’s chest, and from the bodies of prancing extras. More shocking, apparently, are the pyrotechnic depictions of a mugging, a cancer patient, a woman giving birth and two men kissing. The two-second “gay kiss” has been pixelated, presumably to save embarrassing the children, in a version of the video directed by Dave Meyers for delivery to TV channels under a cross-promotional deal with Deutsche Telekom. The European telecommunications group recruited fans from all over Europe to appear in the video when it was shot in Budapest.

It’s all too much. Why, this weekend too, fansites have been twittering that Katy Perry and BFF Rihanna got into an argument over Katy’s new hubby, the amoral buffoon Russell Brand (double yuk). The only good news is that Katy has at least vowed never to strip for Playboy.

Katy Perry, Firework, pop video, censorship,gay kiss,

Fireworks in Firework: British TV viewers see only a pixelated version

According to the star herself, Firework is influenced by Jack Kerouac’s novel about male bonding, On the Road. Digital Spy’s reviewer Nick Levine even accords the song the accolade of being a “straight up self-empowerment anthem”. Pass the sickbag, James.

OK, OK, boys and girls. In Frankie Goes to Hollywood’s immortal words, relax. For any TV viewers feeling deprived of the knee-trembling kiss in the Perry video, which is of course viewable in full 1080p HD on YouTube, there’s plenty more where that came from. The web is replete with more pop videos flaunting gay kisses than mum and dad might wish for. The following links round up the most notorious from both genders — four are viewable only behind age-restricted gateways. And because it’s so darn funky, Shapersofthe80s has thrown in the Pet Shop Boys’ most notorious Bruce Weber video for Being Boring, which contains naughtiness on any number of levels, but you’re going to need gimlet eyes to spot the gay kiss. You’re very welcome to propose your own favourite pop kisses. Thanks to Jobe, we’re up to 20 vidz now.

Lady Gaga, Telephone, pop video, gay kiss

Lady Gaga: a jailbird’s perk in the video for Telephone

Lady Gaga, Stephen Gately, Boyzone, Blink-182

Pop smackers: Lady Gaga in Lovegame, Stephen Gately in Boyzone’s Better, two vamps in Blink-182’s I Miss You

♫ Christina Aguilera’s Beautiful

♫ Lady Gaga’s Lovegame

♫ Lady Gaga’s Telephone

♫ Blink-182’s I Miss You

♫ Peter Doherty’s Last Of The English Roses

♫ Black Eyed Peas’ I Gotta Feeling

♫ Yehonathan’s On a Hot Summer Night

♫ Adam Lambert tongue-diving in concert

♫ Tatu’s All the Things She Said

♫ George Michael’s Outside (uncut)

♫ Matt Alber’s End of the World

♫ Kylie’s All the Lovers

♫ The Strokes’ Juicebox

♫ Paul Oscar’s International

♫ Madonna’s American Pie

♫ Scissor Sisters’ Filthy/Gorgeous

♫ Boyzone’s Better

♫ Pet Shop Boys’ Being Boring — a film by Bruce Weber

Pink, Raise Your Glass, gay kiss, pop video
♫ In at No 19 (thanks, Rob): Pink’s Raise Your Glass — “Don’t be fancy, just get dancey”!

♫ And one more makes 20 (thanks, Jobediah Ingram): Macklemore & Ryan Lewis’s Same Love


➢ Read on in the New York Times:
For Gays, New Songs of Survival

“These artists represent a new wave of young (and mostly straight) women who are providing the soundtrack for a generation of gay fans coming to terms with their identity in a time of turbulent and confusing cultural messages.”

➢ Elsewhere at Shapers of the 80s… Update Nov 2011 – Firework falls out of UK chart after 58 weeks