Gay stereotypes can have some truth, you know. One night a few months ago, I was idly browsing YouTube, looking for music videos. I remembered the Pet Shop Boys, remembered their 1995 B-side collection Alternative
, and then remembered that it included the demo version of Liza Minelli's 1989 European hit "Losing My Mind."
So, I went to a performance video of hers.
Midway through the video, I realized that I was listening to a Liza Minelli cover of a Pet Shop Boys song. "Wow. I fit the stereotype."
(And I really like the song, thank you very much!)
I've always been interested in the ways that queer men--or at least, a notable minority of queer men, in North America at least--seem to share a very particular taste in music, often electronic and certainly dramatic, and often featuring the vocals of female divas (as described aptly in Richard Montlack's recent My Diva
, a collection of different queer men's particular divas). It's idiosyncratic enough that, in the Pet Shop Boys' hit "Can You Forgive Her?
, one of the biggest and first clues that the narrator wasn't quite straight came with the lyrics "She's made you some kind of laughing stock/Because you dance to disco, and you don't like rock."
I wonder: what's up with that? It's quite certainly not part of our biological inheritance, but I don't have any certain idea why this taste exists. Maybe it's because the unabashed energy of these musics resonates with people who had to keep their personal lives under wraps? I wonder.