Tiana Reeves Makes ‘Money,’ Heads To London, & Talks About Sex

Tiana Reeves a fixture on the NYC scene, an imp, a problem child, has been missing. As it turns out (and we all know she can turn it out), she has been spending her time back and forth between London and Toronto. Our world has been a little darker, a little quieter, a bit boring, and definitely bland since she has been gone. Now she comes at us again with a track, a single, a song… "Money (That’s What I Want)," written by Berry Gordy and Janie Bradford. It was Motown’s first hit, and later was covered by many others including The Beatles and The Flying Lizards.

Tiana’s take on it is available on iTunes and it’s very good. As I listened to it last night, my house of snarky snarks commented that it was good and attributed its wonderfulness to all sorts of fabulous others before I told them it was Tiana. Tiana is, of course, fabulous and unconventional and her track reflects a thorough understanding of the meaning of "Money". I chatted with her last night.

You are spending your time between London and Toronto. Why these places… and why not much here?
Well, I’ve been in NYC for 20 years, and as much as I always will love NYC and all my friends there, I feel like i need to move on to something different. I am not the kind of person that could live in one city for the rest of their lives…..but that’s just me! I know I will go back to NYC to visit, but living in NYC that part of my life is done.

What was it like working with the amazing Amy Sacco?
Amy and I had a great relationship ….we where friends, and even tho our friendship was odd to some people, we always got each other even if people on the outside never really got the whole dynamic of it. We made it work! My time spent at Bungalow was amazing …many memories of celebrities and fun nights were left behind when the doors where closed….

You are a transexual who is found more often in the straight(er) parties and clubs. How did you find acceptance, and how do you deal with the fools who dont get it?
Well, my primary audience in Toronto is definitely gay (I love the gays), but yes, in NYC and London it is definitely more straight, and usually I am very well accepted… but for the few douche bags that don’t get it, I usually tell them to get with the fucking program. It’s 2013. Get with it, honey! for the few fools that don’t get it after that ,well…….let’s just say, they will never forget me.

Is Toronto accepting of you?
Yes, very much so! I feel that Canada is very accepting of transexuals and is very, very gay friendly and sooooo forward in their thinking, with laws toward acceptance in all aspects of gay life! Of course ,you do have this side of Toronto that is a bit backwards and set in their ways, but I always find a way to make them like me 😉

How vibrant is the scene in London?
The scene in London is very vibrant but its unlike any other …but i suppose every city has a different scene ,but London has all these nights and events that are hidden in so many nooks and crannies and also you do have to be part of the IN crowd to really experience the best of London’s night scene!

How do you use your sexuality to earn a living and get what you want? Is it easy to attract the moths to your candle?
Well being a transexual for soooo many years means that sexuality and appeal has always been a very big part of my life.  It’s helped me in getting what I want and, especially now, when getting into the music industry, your appeal is everything. So I guess all prior experiences were a crash course in what was to come!

You covered "Money." Tell me about this musical foray and why you chose that particular song? You aren’t by any means a Fying Lizard.
Well, I always loved that song, so when Ruben, my producer, asked me what I wanted to do as a musical track and genre, I said, "How about doing a remake of this song ?" and he replied with a lot of enthusiasm and was instrumental in pushing me to do this song and be confident about it. 

Also, I think that society is finally ready to see transexuals involved in the music industry. I, for one, am so ready to be part of it and am very happy to see that my single "MONEY (That’s What I Want)" is taking off so fast and has so many positive reviews! Hey, it’s finally available on iTunes and Amazon ….who knew!?

What is wrong with NY? What is right about NY?
For me, I just feel like NYC has lost its edge ….I  remember when I moved to NYC in 1989 and then worked for Peter Gatien; NYC was amazing and so edgy!  But then I saw the city becoming more and more middle America and gentrified.

On the other hand, NYC will aways be a strong, amazing city that is capable of reinventing itself. Even though its edge is no longer in your face, you will always be able to find this "je ne said quoi" about NYC and you will constantly have an influx of new "blood" that is desperate to make its mark as the new club personality or "it" factor and this …..is what makes it fabulous!

What NYC clubs do Londoners ask you about?
Well, when it comes to me, they always ask agout the clubs they know I used to be associated with, but mostly are fascinated with the legendary clubs that are now no longer such as Limelight, Tunnel, Club USA , Palladium… but recently XL has been asked about because it’s pretty much the big game in town 🙂 But now, since they know I live in Toronto part-time, they do ask a lot about the new club scene in Toronto!

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Gay Men Assaulted At A Barbara Streisand Movie

Is there any more cliché place this could have occurred?

Some dickface assaulted two gay men in Lafayette, Louisiana, this week at a movie theater during a screening of the Barbara Streisand/Seth Rogen film, The Guilt Trip.

As reported by Queerty, Walt Jamison, 23, and his partner had just arrived at the theater to meet up with two friends when homophobic douchebag Joseph W. Menard Jr. started yelling anti-gay slurs at them. The partner asked Menard "Excuse me?", at which point Menard jumped out of his seat and began "screaming hate slurs peppered with profanities."

Someone else in the theater yelled at Menard to shut up, adding that she had her young children with her in the theater, Menard "insulted" her as well. Then Menard slapped Jamison’s partner on the back of the head and punched him in the face, knocking off his glasses, according to the Advocate.

Menard and his wife fled the theater, but were caught by police. Menard has been charged with two counts of battery and his wife with one count of resisting arrested. Queerty pondered why Menard was not hit with hate crime charges but said the district attorney could add those charges later. Here’s hoping they do and that bigot rots in jail.

Contact the author of this post at Jessica.Wakeman@Gmail.com. Follow me on Twitter.

Thomas The Gay Footman Comes Out In ‘Downton Abbey’ Season Three

Thomas Barrow, the footman-turned-valet-turned-underbutler of Downton Abbey, has been the sole gay character for the first two seasons of the series. Thomas pursued makeout seshs with several closeted visiting dignitaries in season one, but has otherwise been relegated to scheming with O’Brien and, oh, World War One. In season three, actor Robert James-Collier tells OUT magazine, he finally lets his gay flag fly. 

Author Aaron Hicklin writes:

I have it on great authority that this is the season in which that villainous gay footman-turned-valet, Thomas Barrow, experiences the tender love that his poor, neglected heart so craves and needs. It’s about time. … In season 3, we get to see Thomas outed in a powerful sequence of episodes that James-Collier considers the best acting of his career.

Thomas is outed, according to Hicklin’s piece, during a confrontation with the head butler Mr. Carson, with whom Thomas has always sought to undermine. But Downton creator Julian Fellowes infuses the moment with "dignity," supposedly, which I think means that Thomas doesn’t get the shit beaten out of him, nor is he tossed out into the Yorkshire countryside on his ass. James-Collier himself explained to the magazine:

It’s the series where we really comes to grips with Thomas’s sexuality and the impact being gay must have had on him, in Edwardian times. If you’re including a gay character, there’s an onus and responsibility to at least show what the impact of the time will be on him, and of him on that time. Thankfully we’ve done that, and I’m so proud that I’ve been used to tell that tale … If you were gay in those times, the fact that you’re even functioning, how you’re not completely fucked up by that, is beyond me.

Does this mean some hot, gay onscreen sex scenes will be in store? (FYI, James-Collier is even more easy on the eyes in real life photo shoots than he is on Downton.) One can only hope … 

Contact the author of this post at Jessica.Wakeman@Gmail.com. Follow me on Twitter.

GLAAD Study: Representation Of LGBT Characters On TV Is Best Its Ever Been

Finally! Some good news! The Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation’s annual study of LGBT characters on primetime TV is out. Gay, lesbian, bi and trans characters have been the most visible they’ve ever been.

Where We Are On TV studied characters on scripted shows on the upcoming 2012-2013 season for both network (ABC, NBC, CBS, The CW, and FOX) and mainstream cable. The numbers may not sound like much, seeing as LGBT folks represent a meager 4.4% of scripted series regulars on broadcast TV. But they are indeed the highest number ever recorded by GLAAD:  2011 saw 2.9%, 2010 saw 3.9%, 2009 saw 3%, 2008 saw 2.6%, and 2007 saw 1.1%. Put another way, compared with 2007, LGBT characters saw a 400% increase on the broadcast networks — but it’s still an unacceptably small percentage of all characters overall.  As for mainstream cable, the networks studied reached a new high of 61 LGBT characters total.

ABC and Showtime came out on top as the channels from their respective categories with the best respresentation. But FOX — yes, really, FOX — had the most inclusive show on broadcast TV because it airs Glee. Over at HBO, True Blood was the most inclusive show in mainstream cable. 

You can read the full, data-filled study in a PDF over at GLAAD’s web site, which is packed to the gills with information about ethnic/racial presentation, gender identity, LGBT people of color, and people with disabilities amongst the characters studied as well. It’s more data than your brain might want to process, but the tl;dr? Things are getting better.

Contact the author of this post at Jessica.Wakeman@Gmail.com. Follow me on Twitter and Tumblr.

Miller Lite Redefines “LGBT” With Gay Ad

What’s that? Gay guys don’t only drink Cosmopolitans and Blow Job shots? Well, it’s true, some of us like beer. Like a cool, refreshing Miller Lite. Ah, yes, sometimes I just want to hang out with my bois and catch up on Sex and the City reruns and throw back a few watered-down beers, because I lack a personality and a refined taste. Or at least that’s what Miller Lite would like me to believe with their ad campaign targeted to cool-guy gays across the country.

Behold, the Miller Lite ad featuring four (presumably) homosexuals just gayin’ it up all over town with their brews. So real! So natural. After all, it’s high time that the silly acronym "LGBT" be redefined—and why not shuffle those letters around? After all, what can you make "LGBT" stand for, anyway? "Lite Gays. Butt Tossing?" Nah, that doesn’t sound fun. LBGT sounds a lot more accurate. Lite Beer! Yes! Great Taste? You bet! 

Sure, there are no Ls or Ts (again, presumably) in the ad here, but, ah well, I suppose lesbians and transexuals can just switch to Bud Lite if they’re really offended, huh? 

(But seriously, here’s a tip to Miller Lite: there’s a difference between marketing to an audience and pandering to an audience. Why don’t you guys guess what your ad does to the LGBT community?)

Check out the full ad below:

lgbt miller lite

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Bret Easton Ellis Agrees With Paris Hilton About Gays & AIDS

Great minds think alike!  One-man peanut gallery Bret Easton Ellis has tweeted that he "kind of" agrees with Paris Hilton’s dumb-ass comments about promiscuous gays on Grindr all having AIDS, because … well … what would this scandal be without Ellis weighing in, really?

Earlier this week Hilton was recorded by a cab driver discussing Grindr, which I think needs no introduction here, and Paris Hilton-ly squealed:

Gay guys are the horniest people in the world. They’re disgusting. Dude, most of them probably have AIDS…I would be so scared if I was a gay guy. You’ll like, die of AIDS.

First of all, shut up, Paris Hilton. Like you should be calling anyone disgusting.

Second of all, gay guys are not the horniest people in the world: evangelical Christian and Satmyr Jew teenagers are, obviously.

But I suppose that is neither here nor there, but American Psycho author Bret Easton Ellis  weighed in on Twitter yesterday to add his two cents:

I kind of agree with Paris Hilton. As someone who has used Grindr? Paris Hilton is not that far off. 

What an excellent example of a damaging culture sterotype being promoted by someone who should know better. 

Contact the author of this post at Jessica.Wakeman@Gmail.com. Follow me on Twitter and Tumblr

‘The New Normal’ Too Gay For Utah TV

Oh, Utah. KSL-TV is refusing to air NBC’s upcoming comedy The New Normal about a gay couple trying to procreate with the help of a surrogate. It is "inappropriate on several dimensions, especially during family viewing time," you see. The CEO made this decision after only viewing The New Normal‘s pilot episode, the Hollywood Reporter says, pronouncing Normal‘s dialogue "crude," the content "explicit," and the characterizations "offensive." Translation: too gay.  

This is the same station which wouldn’t air The Playboy Club because OMG whores. I guess this means the station also won’t air Two And A Half Men, which employed wife beater Charlie Sheen and now employs wife cheater Ashton Kutcher? And every episode of The Bachelor and The Bachelorette will be gone, too, for all that premarital sex? 

Ellen Barkin, who stars on The New Normal with Justin Bartha and Andrew Rannels, blasted the station over Twitter, calling them "blatantly homophobic." Barkin continued, "So L&O SVU (rape & child murder) is ok? But loving gay couple having a baby is inappropriate?"

Really, we should feel sorry for the poor little country bumpkin Utah TV station. They actually take those toothless threats from bigoted busybodies One Million Moms seriously.

Terrible Gay Man Figured Out That Terrible Gay Men Make Gay Men Feel Terrible

I know all of you non-gays are assuming that being gay is all shits and LOLs and rainbows and sunshine and blowjobs and poppers and musicals and Fire Island and abs and Lady Gaga. But did you know that gay guys have feelings, too? Not just the ones about AIDS and the constant threat of being attacked either physically or verbally by homophobes and the Religious Right! No, we feel bad about our stomachs, too. It’s running rampant!

Over at Hommemaker (get it?), founder Orlando Soria takes a break from having perfect hair and a perfect jaw line to bring the issue of body image among gay men front and center by displaying why, exactly, gay men hate themselves: because of gay men like him.

I never sought out to have friends with such perfect bodies. Quite the contrary actually. As an FFK (Former Fat Kid) I’ve always identified as a fat person. But for some reason when I grew up all my friends became hot skinny people. This could be for many reasons. Maybe it’s because I am a terrible, superficial person. Maybe it’s because I live in a city and people who live in cities get skinny from running all over the place and going on trendy diets. Perhaps it’s because of my educational background at Ivy League schools, where everyone was obsessive compulsive about everything, from their grades to their caloric intake. I have no idea why everyone around me is so skinny. Sometimes I resent it because I tend to be the chunkiest person around and I’m not even fat. Sometimes I appreciate it because it inspires me to keep in shape and think of kale as an acceptable meal replacement. All of this will lead to me living a longer, healthier life, aside from the mental anguish that comes with not having perfect abs.

For "full disclosure," Soria shares a picture of his disgusting, disgusting fattie fatso body:

Let’s all shout it together, OK? EWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW!

Alright, seriously: fuck this guy. Fuck this guy and fuck his terrible article, too. Is it supposed to be funny? Is it supposed to be serious? Who knows, because it’s a piece of shit. Nothing says "let’s be completely inclusive of the community I am representing" like saying things such as:

  • "Comparing a boyfriend’s body with his girlfriend’s body is like comparing apples and oranges. Comparing a boyfriend’s body with a boyfriend’s body is like comparing apples and apples." (Because ALL gay men date other gay men who look exactly like them.)
  • "Let’s face it, Gay people are better at life than straight people. They eat better, wear better clothes, and go on more glamourous vacations." (Because ALL gay men have the cash to burn on travel, clothes, and nice meals.)
  • "If you’re constantly surrounded by people who workout and eat lightly, you’re going to end up just as skinny as they are. It’s like a positive version of peer pressure where everyone ends up looking like Malibu Ken." (Because ALL gay men are skinny and workout regularly and eat lightly, and because ALL gay men ONLY hang out with gay men.)
  • "Because of all their money, intelligence, and free time, Gays love hobbies. Being manic about our bodies is just another activity to add to our list of Gay Cruises, hipster-indie concerts, and gallery openings." (Because ALL gay men are the kind of insufferable, miserable, boring people who consider "working out" to be an interest.)

Orlando finally cracked the code! Or, rather, painted himself to be the reason why SOME gay men feel bad about the way they look: because the overwhelming mainstream ideal of what a gay man should look like is one to which Mr. Soria subscribes and propagates. It is based entirely on education, socioeconomic status, cultural values, and fashion. And because this guy either can’t see outside of his own asshole, or because he simply think he’s hilariously cheeky, there will always be a ton of gay men—young impressionable gay men who, let’s face it, may not have the privileges and opportunities afforded to guys like Soria—who will continue to feel bad about themselves. Yes, let’s continue to repeat the same stereotypes and look at pictures of hot dudes rather than suggest that maaaaaybe most of us look pretty "normal" already. 

Also, confidential to guys with abs: some of us gay dudes think they are gross!

Bret Easton Ellis Is Cranky About NPH, “Gay” Sitcoms

I don’t know who anointed American Psycho author Bret Easton Ellis the cultural arbiter of all things gay (that would be John Waters, duh), but Ellis had a huffy week on Twitter getting upset by the perceived gayness of CBS sitcoms.

Ellis’ strong opinions zeroed in on gay actors who play straight roles, tweeting:

"Feel complicated about Neil Patrick Harris on How I Met Your Mother — central joke being that he’s a gay actor playing a het[erosexual] womanizer. Why not cast Jason Segel in the Neil Patrick Harris role in How I Met Your Mother? [Because] the meta-joke is that Harris is openly gay. Lame. You don’t think the makers of How I Met Your Mother didn’t KNOW that Neil Patrick Harris and that would be part of the joke? Really? Look, I like Neil Patrick Harris especially when he’s hosting The Tonys but How I Met Your Mother is, like all CBS sitcoms, a piece of crap."

He also griped about the nerdy The Big Bang Theory. "And please don’t get me started on the gay The Big Bang Theory – I’m too tired to go there," he tweeted. "Gayness personified."

Despite his strongly voiced opinions on "crap," Ellis’ core complaint is unclear. Is he implying that gay actors should only play gays onscreen and straight actors should only play straight ones? Because if Rush Limbaugh called for casting roles that way, we would call it "discrimination." And practically speaking the result would be less work for gay and lesbian actors, given the lack of mainstream roles for gay and lesbian characters.

These tweets by prompted after Ellis tweeted at length against rumored casting White Collar man piece Matt Bomer as the Christian Grey role in 50 Shades Of Grey because Bomer is gay. His objection is that Bomer is gay and Grey has to be straight, for some reason ( despite fact Bomer played a married straight man in Magic Mike and no one cared). It is worth noting that on Friday night, Ellis did a 180 and tweeted, "You know what? I changed my mind. I think a gay actor HAS GOT to play Grey. It’s IMPERATIVE that someone gay plays him…"

I’m not sure if Bomer or NPH’s real-life sexuality are the first thing on all viewers’ minds; they certainly aren’t on mine, nor are the sexual orientations of other actors. As a heterosexual woman, I wonder if Ellis’ observation is acutely sensitive to him because he is gay, yet goes unobserved by others.