I admit it, I’m a woman on the downhill slope from middle age. I’m settled and I’m happy. A fun evening out to me is dinner and hanging out somewhere where you can talk without shouting. Clubbing is not my thing, at all. I was raised on radio when radio was mostly rock and some pop. That’s what I still listen to, with some variance from time to time. What’s funny is, I’m now married to a wonderful woman who once set all six FM presets in my car to the same country music radio station. It’s the ONLY station she listens to if we’re anywhere in the listening area.
I enjoy the music that I listen to but I’m occasionally willing to expand my mind. For example, I didn’t discover Adele until mid 2011 but I absolutely adore her. I also followed, with great interest, the first season of the NBC hit TV show “The Voice” and specifically 2 of its contestants, out lesbian singers Beverly McClellan and Vicci Martinez. I’ve now reviewed music by both of them…see below.
Anyway, keeping with the theme of being perfectly honest, I have little to no interest in electronica and dance remixes. That’s just the way it is. I’ve decided to use this section of pages of this site to very briefly cover music that I like. I probably won’t be reviewing many of the latest, hottest artists on this page. There are plenty of sites that do that anyway.
Artists / Albums I’ve Reviewed:
The January and December 2011 releases from singer/songwriter and former contestant on the NBC hit, “The Voice”, Beverly McClellan. Personal opinion, the 2nd album is better (it has the 3 biggest hits from the first one anyway) but they’re both great. Please see my June 14th, 2012 post for my review.
The latest album (2011) Live at Benaroya Hall With The Seattle Symphony, by Brandi Carlile along with her hugely popular 2007 album The Story, and the follow up hit album Give Up the Ghost (2009). Please see my March 14th, 2012 post for my review.
23 Red by Antigone Rising. Reviewed September 27th, 2011 along with the book, “Times Two: Two Women in Love and the Happy Family They Made” co-authored by founding band member Kristen Henderson and her partner, Sarah Ellis.
The 2011 Ohio Lesbian Festival (September 9th-11th) featured many great artists including the work of folk and political singer/songwriter, activist Holly Near and also the duo of Emma’s Revolution who have previously collaborated with Near. You can read my September 10th, 2010 write up about the Lesbian Festival here.
I’ve listed below, works from LGBT artists that I like and works from straight artists who support us. I’m only just scratching the surface but if, after skimming what I list below to get started, you think of something that I might like, feel free to comment. As I said, I’m willing to expand my mind.
The next most recent (see above for a September 2012 review of 4th Street Feeling) from my favorite artist, Melissa Etheridge. I could list all of her stuff here, but you’d be scrolling forever. This album coincided with her break-up with Tammy…a little foreshadowing, I think. She always did sing her best when singing from her pain. So many artists do… A side note: I saw her (again) in concert at the Ohio State Fair on Saturday, August 6th, 2011. If you’re interested, please see my review.
Other LGBT and gay community supporting artists I like, in no particular order include:
The Indigo Girls – This is a compilation of all of their hits that is taken from live performances. If you’re like me, while they’re great to see live, you probably lean toward “cleaner” recordings with better sound. I bought this one just to have all of their music in one place. It’s a nice collection.
Sir Elton John – A greatest hits album rather than his latest. I chose this one because it covers so much of his unbelievable career. He continues to rock and to be the standard for gay artists everywhere.
Lady Gaga – I admit, I didn’t start out to be a fan. Most of her early music I only heard as dance remixes and I already wrote that I’m not a big fan of dance music and the remixes used in the club dance scene. I chose her latest album for this entry but, in a nod to those of you who like the remixes, I chose the special edition that includes some.
Chely Wright – The only “Out” country music artist I’m aware of…right now (No, k.d. lang doesn’t count – she crossed over before she came out). This is her latest, released after coming out. It’s less country and more heart and soul which is probably a good thing for Chely since the country radio station my wife loves and most of the others in the world aren’t playing her music now. It’s a crying shame!
Ricky Martin – Is it really possible that there are still straight women out there that don’t know he’s gay?! There are – odd but true. They’re in total denial but that’s okay for Ricky. Here’s his latest release, Music+Alma+Sexo. It’s tore up the US and Latin charts over the spring and summer of 2011.
Adam Lambert – This is probably the best “live” album I’ll ever endorse. Of course, if you were an American Idol watcher the season he finished 2nd, you already had a preference for his live voice. “Idol” hasn’t been the same since.
Cyndi Lauper – She’s been around forever! She’s still having fun. Always an LGBT supporter, her True Colors tour showed the world how she really felt. Her most recent album, “Memphis Blues” (shown 1st here), is truly a soulful blues album. It’s a big departure for her but she pulls it off beautifully. Still, if you prefer the more traditional Cyndi Lauper, you can’t beat the 2009, 2 disc, 36 song True Colors: The Best of Cyndi Lauper set. It includes every single hit she’s had and many other favorites.
Tegan and Sara – I completely admit that their music is just not a good fit for me. I tried. I guess I’m just too old. I wanted to include them here though because they’re so popular among the teens and 20 somethings in our community that it would nearly be a crime not to include them. To each his or her own!
Ani Difranco – Her most recent (2011 release) of many albums. Always a great folk/rock sound mix and always done independently, Ani’s work defines courage and commitment to the art and craft of making good music that people want to hear.
– One of the best by folk singer/songwriter Alix Dobkin. A trailblazer in so many ways; she was one of the first out entertainers in the entertainment industry – music, movies, or television. She’s a staunch supporter of Womyn’s music. Now in her early 70s, she still performs, she’s active in women’s and lesbian causes and she’s activist.
Driving Home This is quite possibly the best album put together by folk rock singer and songwriter Cheryl Wheeler. Don’t let my opinion sway you though. All of her stuff is very good. She should really do a new album. Her last, Pointing at the Sun, was in 2009. Your fans are waiting!
That’s all for now…to be continued…