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Inauguration Extras:
Towleroad Talks to Rufus Wainwright

Rufus

Towleroad stopped by the 'Out for Equality' Ball on Tuesday night at the Mayflower Hotel (where former Governor Eliot Spitzer had his affairs in Room 871) and we were able to sit down for a few brief moments with Rufus Wainwright, following his performance, to get his thoughts on the new administration.

The ball was sponsored by the Human Rights Campaign, PFLAG, GLAAD, the Service Members Legal Defense Network, and nearly two dozen other organizations. Megan Carpentier has a report at The Daily Beast.

At right, a video of Cyndi Lauper, Wainwright, Thelma Houston, and Catie Curtis, who gathered on stage following Lauper's performance to join her in a rendition of "Girls Just Wanna Have Fun" which turned into an impromptu celebration of the new president and first lady. Below, a photo I shot during that moment.

Watch Corey Johnson's chat with Rufus, in which he talks about visits to various inaugurations, his strapping German boyfriend, and what he's working on, AFTER THE JUMP...

Ofore_2

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Comments

  1. Not to be overly critical but the gathering looks very white and very male. I guess the gays of color were at all of the other balls and the lesbians were at home with the kids Come on!!!! That pic makes this particular ball look very repub

    Posted by: jimmyboyo | Jan 22, 2009 10:08:00 AM


  2. Doofus Wainwright is Tammy Lynn Michaels with a penis...

    http://www.towleroad.com/2008/12/rufus-wainwrigh.html

    Rufus Wainwright on Marriage Equality
    From an interview in the New York Press:

    "Oddly enough, I’m actually not a huge gay marriage supporter. I personally don’t want to get married but I think that any law or amendment to the constitution that deals with sex and love should just be banned in general. I don’t think any government should encroach on what goes on in the bedroom at all. Frankly, if you want to marry a dog, why don’t you go ahead and marry a dog, I don’t care. I’m a complete libertarian and so I really disagree with it."

    What a tool.

    Posted by: JohnInManhattan | Jan 22, 2009 11:25:11 AM


  3. A voice that could grate hard gay cheese.

    Posted by: Andalusian Dog | Jan 22, 2009 11:58:14 AM


  4. Jimmyboyo, I think you might be right. But don't be critical of those that do attend such events. The time of blaming others for one's own inaction are now over. If Black Gay-Americans can't be bothered to show up, or have better offers, I don't see why suggesting that those who do attend are some how or some way at fault. Not that you were being overly critical.

    Posted by: Sargon Bighorn | Jan 22, 2009 12:24:08 PM


  5. A part of "Stonewall 2.0" should be, along with eliminating awards to and cover stories about D-List straight celebs simply because they'll say the word "gay," the successful repression of the false need to ask every gay scarecrow questions that only those with brains could answer.

    Though this does serve to provide competition with "Recreating Judy At Carnegie Hall" for the Rufus the Stupid Award.

    Posted by: Leland Frances | Jan 22, 2009 12:27:39 PM


  6. While I do like Rufus's music, seen him live a few times, he should just sing and shut the fuck up.

    Posted by: patrick nyc | Jan 22, 2009 1:20:03 PM


  7. Sargon

    or the planners of the event were selective to who the tickets went or at very least selective in promoting tickets

    Gays of color history of showing when invited/ made welcome = YEPP

    white gay male history of discriminating against lesbians and gays of color = yepp

    Posted by: jimmyboyo | Jan 22, 2009 4:22:51 PM


  8. PS Just look at the picture

    2 maybe 3 Gays of color

    9 possible 10 femals/ lesbians or straight frineds of gays

    How many AA gay groups were included in the supposed illustrious list? HRC is well known as a haven of country club white log cabinites

    Is it like CA No on 8 in not even communicating with Gay rights group of color? Is it like too many gay gatherings were lesbians aren't openly courted to join us?

    The history is there that shows that too many of our groups do not reach out to non white or non male gays.

    Posted by: jimmyboyo | Jan 22, 2009 4:39:34 PM


  9. @ JIMMYBOYO
    sorry to dissappoint you but HERE is the list before you continue your ignorance and bashing.
    Tickets "given"? or invited/ promoted?
    Perhaps your invite was lost in the mail.
    PERHAPS if you were a member of one of the organizations you would have heard of it.
    PERHAPS you are just content with bashing and snark.

    Presented by:
    Human Rights Campaign Foundation,
    Gay & Lesbian Victory Fund & Leadership Institute,
    National Gay and
    Lesbian Task Force, PFLAG,
    Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against
    Defamation,
    National Black Justice Coalition, Servicemembers Legal Defense Network, Freedom to Marry, BiNet USA, DignityUSA, Out & Equal Workplace Advocates,
    Equality Federation,
    National Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce,
    National Coalition for LGBT Health,
    LGBT Community Center of NY, International Federation of Black Prides, CenterLink: The Community of LGBT Centers, Family Equality Council, Unid@s, the National Latina/o LGBT Human Rights Organization, National Lesbian and Gay Law Association, GLSEN, Immigration Equality and National Queer Asian Pacific Islander Alliance

    Posted by: MCnNYC | Jan 22, 2009 7:03:03 PM


  10. And serioulsy JIMBOZO...why the hell should gay AA groups be singled out?

    Posted by: MCnNYC | Jan 22, 2009 7:05:08 PM


  11. I had to stop listening after the vomit part. Oy gevalt...there are gays, and then there are faggots. I still have the autographed of poses, though!

    Posted by: TANK | Jan 22, 2009 7:24:23 PM


  12. wow corey is cute. guess i never noticed before ;)

    and i absolutely LOVE rufus so maybe this will sound biased. but i find him to be totally silly and funny. in concert he rambles and tells the most random stories, which i find to be adorable and just as much of the concert experience as hearing him live. His songwriting, though, is what has always impressed me and kept me interested - its just some of the best lyric-writing and complicated pop music around.
    anyway i really hope his opera and the shakespeare project make it over here!
    thanks for interviewing him!

    Posted by: bobby | Jan 22, 2009 8:29:01 PM


  13. MCNYC

    4 specifically non white gay orgs out of 23 listed

    17.5%

    But how does that translate into 2-3 gay males of color out of how many in that pic?

    Your list does not detail ticket distribution to each group

    HRC for example could have had control over 50-75% of tickets

    What percentage of tickets were given to the non white gay groups?

    One can not look at that picture with 2-3 gay males of color out of a flock of European faces during the inauguration celebrations of the 1st Black American president and wonder about something being amiss.

    To think racism does not exist amongst the gay community is naive.

    Use your brain

    2-3 non white faces out of a sea of faces

    Like I said

    The control of tickets being broken down to each group would be more pertinent info

    Log cabine lite HRC had control of how many tickets? 75% Looking at the pic one could surmise 1% at best distributed to specifically non white gay groups.

    Hell, CA no on 8 showed the failure of white gay people to reach out to non white gays. Non white gay groups were constantly trying to get brought on board but were ignored by the so called leaders of no on prop 8 with dismal if at all outreach to non white gays for help on interacting and educating non white heterosexual communities.

    I also mentioned lesbians. Where are all of the lesbians

    Women outnumber men in the general population on the planet. If the percentage of homosexuality amongst females holds true to the same percentage amongst males then common sense would dictate that the party should have had more lesbians than gay men.

    With 9-10 females out of a vast sea of males in that pic one must ask by what standard did the orgs distribute tickets? logic would dictate that the lesbians weren't all in the bathroom at the time of the pic

    Posted by: jimmyboyo | Jan 22, 2009 8:51:35 PM


  14. MCNNYC -- thanks for the complete list of useless, enemies of the cause -- we need new leadership, new vision from outside of these lame half-assed groups -- white republican or otherwise. They should throw a few more parties -- that will help!

    Rise up peeps rise up!

    Posted by: David B. | Jan 22, 2009 9:27:45 PM


  15. Some of you really need to get lives. Some posters are all too eager to cry racism and trash those damn gay white males; never mind that they are the ones who also happen to be the ones overwhelmingly involved in funding and volunteering for all these organizations promoting GLBT equality and fighting our enemies.

    Are minorities involved in these groups and valuable contributors? Absolutely. Is it important to get gay minorities more involved in fighting for our rights? Absolutely. Should existing groups spend all their time working on diversity rather than, I don't know, pursuing their missions of working for LGBT issues? Absolutely not. While it's an important for LGBT groups to work on increasing their diversity and getting minority groups more involved (and believe me, HRC, at least, is working on it), it's not fair to expect them to be as obsessed with that as some posters.

    I also find it curious that HRC is now a log cabin group, after having previously been decried as Hillary's lapdogs. How about everyone quit attacking everyone else and just focus on making progress. To take from a single picture at a single event that all gay rights groups are racist, etc. is absurd, petty and really sad.

    Posted by: John | Jan 22, 2009 9:32:43 PM


  16. That photo is a stunner—no two ways about it. It took me a few minutes to believe it was real. It looks like a GM sales meeting circa 1952. Professor Crabby is appalled. No amount of soft peddling can excuse that crowd; the organizers should be ashamed. Btw, what’s with the suits and ties? Is that required? I haven’t worn a tie in years, & don’t own a suit- I rarely leave my ivory tower. Who are these people? That photo is depressing as hell and says all you need to know about why we got our asses kicked in CA.

    Posted by: professor crabby phd | Jan 22, 2009 10:34:52 PM


  17. Yeah, right. From one snapshot someone can say exactly what the statistical reality and distribution of all in attendence. WRONG! Get over your prejudice and jaundiced view, you bigot!

    Posted by: Dong King | Jan 22, 2009 10:39:33 PM


  18. The lesbians were in the balcony and could not be bothered to stand.
    REALLY you want to judge everything by quotas?
    ANYONE COULD BUY A TICKET!
    And the program included a BLACK FEMALE Singer a STRAIGHT (GASP what was she doing at a LGBT event a WHITE FEMALE LESBIAN A BLACK STRAIGHT GOV (who has a lesBian BLACK Daughter) who spoke ...hell you dont really GIVE A SHIT you are more interested in your own Bull.

    Posted by: MCnNYC | Jan 22, 2009 11:09:29 PM


  19. And DAVID B !
    you are an ignorant twat...really...DID you even read the list?
    JimBOZZO if you have no facts STFU....
    controling tickets....LOL
    "specifically non white gay orgs" !!! I don't know about NGLTF or PFLAG or GLSEN or Servicemembers Legal Defense Network --you think they have any programs SPECIFICALLY aimed at minorities or excluded minorities--but i KNOW for a fact that HRC has.

    Posted by: MCnNYC | Jan 22, 2009 11:25:23 PM


  20. MCNYC

    Do you work for HRC.

    Full disclosure would be nice

    Posted by: jimmyboyo | Jan 23, 2009 1:22:34 AM


  21. Sorry guys but Jimmyboyo has a very valid point. And those of you get upset whenever white gay male racism and classism is mentioned, I'm sorry, but it's reality.

    In Denver I felt like I was at a Log Cabin meeting at all of the LGBT events. I stopped going after seeing one huge dais of white males. I just stuck with the people on the streets who asked me about "Obama Pride" and what state I was a delegate from.

    It's not a matter of what racial group got the movement to where it is. If you want the movement to advance, the white male power structure is going to have to make an effort (and yeah, it's on you since you run everything) to include minorities and women.

    If you don't, prop H8 was only the beginning.

    Posted by: Derek Washington | Jan 23, 2009 2:20:09 AM


  22. I do not work for HRC.
    But I was at the event and in the masses on the mall for the historic event tues.

    Posted by: MCnNYC | Jan 23, 2009 7:56:46 PM


  23. Leland Frances: I have met and spoken with Rufus Wainwright several times. There are several words I can think of to describe him, but 'stupid' isn't one of them.

    Despite my trepidations, I found him to be surprisingly likeable and very well-read.

    He is also very patient, kind and generous to his fans.

    As John (a few posts above me) said: how about everyone quit attacking everyone else and just focus on making progress.

    Posted by: Andrew T | Jan 23, 2009 11:57:30 PM


  24. Hey JOHNINMANHATTAN, it takes a tool to know a tool.

    Have you ever considered that Wainwright's parents were in a particularly bitter divorce, and that his dad has four kids by three different women? Maybe Rufus knows he has his father's roving eye. Maybe he doesn't want history to repeat. Maybe he doesn't want to hurt anyone. Maybe he actually knows what he's talking about.

    The worse thing about his 'live and let live, whatever makes ya happy'-type comment is that the reaction to it has obscured the years of campaigning he has done for this and other causes. That's right: campaigning for something he doesn't particularly want himself. Working on behalf of others. What a tool indeed.

    Speaking of tools, this quote was originally cherry-picked and twisted by that troglodyte Perez Hilton, who still hasn't had the brains to work out what Wainwright is really saying, or the balls to apologise. It has been sadly amusing how many blogs picked up the 'story' after Hilton did. Very telling.

    Ironically, in the original interview in the New York Press, Wainwright says: "when you’re exhausted and overextended, when you’re interviewed you can really sense an extreme feeling of vulnerability."

    Check out his interview with the BBC to hear a more lucid and 'right-on' response to the marriage debate. Then go get a life, and leave him to be out and proud and making a lot of people feel happy, relaxed, peaceful and not so alone in this cold world.

    Posted by: Gerald Uglow | Jan 24, 2009 12:21:00 AM


  25. AMEN Gerald!! Thank you for putting my thoughts down so well. He is but a man. A very talented one at that. Peace and love to Rufus always.

    Posted by: javo | Jan 24, 2009 1:11:10 AM


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