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Jimmy Somerville No Longer Feels Contempt For Closeted Gay Artists - Video


In an interview with The Guardian, Jimmy Somerville says that although he used to hold closeted gay artists in contempt, he now understands “that it’s up to the individual to decide who they are or what they are.”

The singer also talks about his teenage obsession with Donny Osmond and reveals that his falsetto voice did in fact once shatter glass during a sound-check in Newcastle.

Watch Somerville’s haunting 30th anniversary reprise of Bronski Beat classic Smalltown Boy, AFTER THE JUMP...


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  1. Perfect, down to the aged ivory keys on the piano. (I have to wonder if there's a cottage industry of retrofitting old keyboards into modern pianos.)

    This song - and the whole album - were just very important to me in the 80s.

    Posted by: tominsf | Jul 18, 2014 11:42:40 AM

  2. I was delighted to read in the interview that he's coming out with an 'organic disco' album sometime soon (?) Yay!!

    "Why" is always on my workout playlist.

    Posted by: hugo | Jul 18, 2014 11:46:32 AM

  3. Name me an illness
    Call me a sin
    Never feel guilty
    Never give in

    Those words were massive for me when I first heard them. I saw The Communards live once, they were incredible, Jimmy's voice cut through the sound with no problem.

    Posted by: Henry Holland | Jul 18, 2014 1:18:46 PM

  4. I am sure gay recording artists everywhere will now sleep better, and feel empowered when they go into the studio knowing that Jimmy Sommerville feels contempt for them.

    Posted by: Ricco. Reid | Jul 18, 2014 3:05:42 PM

  5. @ "I am sure gay recording artists everywhere will now sleep better, and feel empowered when they go into the studio knowing that Jimmy Sommerville feels contempt for them."


    Posted by: Derrick from Philly | Jul 18, 2014 3:16:57 PM

  6. I used to like The Osmonds (not Donny specifically), until I learned what raging militant heterosexists they are.

    Posted by: Stuffed Animal | Jul 18, 2014 4:38:38 PM

  7. I still hold them in contempt. Jimmy can't change that.

    And given the near-absence of same-sex lyrics on the radio, I hold openly gay artists in contempt if they use closety pronouns in their music.

    Posted by: Randy | Jul 18, 2014 5:21:28 PM

  8. Good to see him growing as a person. I used to hate him & other openly gay celebrities growing up in the closet. It's only as an adult i realized that i shouldn't scorn camp people who can't blend in as being a bad representation of the gay community. It was always those who were unafraid of rejection who paved the way for the rights we now have. As an adult, i now embrace Marc Almond, Andy Bell & Jimmy Somerville for paving the way.

    Posted by: James | Jul 19, 2014 12:35:39 PM

  9. Somerville helped break the glass ceiling for gay performers way before it was 'safe' to do so, and The Communards' work is the soundtrack of a (my)generation. Anything else is just fluff and his status is iconic to the kids of the 1980's who didn't know what to do, where to go - he was a shining light on the road. I can understand his frustration at closeted singers etc. but there isn't really anything to fear except losing fame... and if a career is built on a lie, is it really worth it? Step up and step out and help gay kids today... join the tent, there's plenty of room!

    Posted by: SeanR | Jul 20, 2014 10:48:36 AM

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