I'm Gay | Music | News | Rostam Batmanglij

Vampire Weekend Band Member is Gay


Vampire Weekend's Rostam Batmanglij apparently came out of the closet when he talked to OUT magazine about introducting a "homosexual perspective" into some of the band's songs, and told the magazine that the band's track "I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend" from their 2009 debut is a gay pop anthem.

Says Batmamglij: “With that song I was having fun, but at the same time it was honest -- those lyrics are meaningful to me, they come from my heart. I was disappointed when it didn’t become a gay anthem, but, you know, it’s not too late.”

Watch: Jake Gyllenhaal Showcases Stripper Talents in New Vampire Weekend Video [tr]

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  1. Cool! But that song is actually from his side project Discovery's debut album, IIRC.

    Posted by: Feral | Feb 24, 2010 12:24:57 PM

  2. Not surprising and makes perfect sense. On "Wolcott" they sing about "bears out in Provincetown"! Another reason to like one of the most innovative bands today.

    Posted by: John | Feb 24, 2010 12:30:18 PM

  3. Wow, I downloaded their first release and HATED it. They sounded like spoiled rich kids singing about summers in the Vineyard. But I will give the track in mention another listen.

    But gay anthem? I'm skeptical

    Posted by: Christopher | Feb 24, 2010 12:31:12 PM

  4. They ARE spoiled rich kids singing about summers in the Vineyard... that's the whole point. The cultural specificity of it is kind of what makes VW interesting--blueblood Ivy league northeasterners writing genteel pop songs over afrobeat-derived rhythms. I realize it's not everyone's cup of tea but as someone who loves specificity of place/culture in bands/songs (I was a huge Britpop fan in the '90s, for example, and I adore the domestic suburban vignettes of bands like Squeeze and Fountains of Wayne), VW really hit the spot.

    Posted by: Jason | Feb 24, 2010 12:58:09 PM

  5. Well Isn't he just as cute as a bugs ear?

    Posted by: dp | Feb 24, 2010 1:12:48 PM

  6. I liked the debut for about five minutes and then I got bored. I did think Walcott was wonderful. But it just didn't have a lot of staying power for me.

    I also don't find them innovative at all. I find acts like Owen Pallett (formerly Final Fantasy), Joanna Newsom, Bjork, Dirty Projectors, St. Vincent, Antony and the Johnsons, and The Knife to be a lot more innovative in terms of challenging listeners and pushing the envelope in terms of songwriting, arrangement/production and vocals.

    And as far as genteel pop goes, I think Grizzly Bear and Beach House have the market cornered pretty well. That said, Pitchfork loved the 2nd Vampire Weekend album so I may need to give that a listen and see if it's any good.

    Posted by: Alex | Feb 24, 2010 1:13:52 PM

  7. Also, "I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend" is from his side project Discovery, not Vampire Weekend. Discovery was all sorts of fun. Really good electro pop/soul.

    Posted by: Alex | Feb 24, 2010 1:17:09 PM

  8. CHRISTOPHER. Are you more of a “poor guys singing in the slums” kind of guy??

    Posted by: KB | Feb 24, 2010 1:22:37 PM

  9. yes, check out DISCOVERY. Great Album.

    Posted by: ryan | Feb 24, 2010 1:27:13 PM

  10. They are still a terrible band.

    Posted by: DD | Feb 24, 2010 1:27:39 PM

  11. It's always the keyboard player. (sigh.)

    Posted by: johnny | Feb 24, 2010 1:39:51 PM

  12. LOVE VAMPIRE WEEKEND!!! I'm kind of excited about this coming out... even though it's not terribly surprising. I mean, indie rockers from Columbia University... one was bound to be gay.

    Posted by: Jon B | Feb 24, 2010 1:41:34 PM

  13. Oh cool. I really like their new single Taxi Cab. I'll be looking forward to seeing them play @ Coachella.

    Posted by: Rafael | Feb 24, 2010 1:52:12 PM

  14. Johnny, both Grizzly Bear and Sigur Ros have gay lead singers (but in the case of Sigur Ros, I wish THEIR keyboard player were gay . . . and madly in love with me.)

    Posted by: Alex | Feb 24, 2010 1:58:17 PM

  15. I loathe Vampire Weekend, but I'd be his boyfriend any day he'd have me...he is cuuuuuuuute!

    @ALEX: I agree with you that Sigur Ros' keyboardist is dreamy. They are also a great band.

    Posted by: peterparker | Feb 24, 2010 2:35:33 PM

  16. All the more reason to love them! And luckily they're not everyone's cup of Gaga.

    Posted by: Matty | Feb 24, 2010 3:01:39 PM

  17. Confused here, I thought this was old news. One of the songs off the new album, which Batmanglij co-wrote, goes:

    "That night I smoked a joint
    With my best friend
    We found ourselves in bed
    When I woke up he was gone

    He was the diplomat's son
    It was ‘81"

    Pretty clear to me (except the '81 part since he is too young for that to be the case, but whatever)...

    Posted by: Nick | Feb 24, 2010 3:33:34 PM

  18. Rostam is also a shortie.

    Nice to see people appreciating us smaller fellas :)

    Posted by: Alex | Feb 24, 2010 3:44:31 PM

  19. Have you heard that song? Its kind of hard to dance to.

    Posted by: DAN A | Feb 24, 2010 3:47:13 PM

  20. Fat hairy midget comes out of the closet...bridge troll band member is gay...next!

    Posted by: TANK | Feb 24, 2010 3:53:08 PM

  21. So I guess this is the post where you all try to prove your hipster status by namechecking really obscure indy bands.

    Posted by: GrabbinNewscum | Feb 24, 2010 5:07:03 PM

  22. Ugh, Tank you are such a petty piece of shit.

    Posted by: TZ | Feb 24, 2010 5:13:23 PM

  23. Isn't it hilarious how some commenters love mentioning the obscure in some postings and then in others they love posting a "who?" in regards to those on brink of stardom.

    I think it is hilarious, personally.

    Posted by: Washington | Feb 24, 2010 5:16:56 PM

  24. Eh, he actually came out in a Rolling Stone interview 3 weeks ago....as I commented about here: http://www.towleroad.com/2010/02/music-news-february-9.html

    But I guess it doesn't count until you come out in a gay magazine?

    Posted by: Thorir | Feb 24, 2010 5:40:22 PM

  25. TZ, can't you be fat and ugly and fat...gross...and fat somewhere less conspicuous? GO BE FAT SOMEWHERE ELSE!

    Posted by: TANK | Feb 24, 2010 5:55:28 PM

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