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Elton John, David Furnish, And 'True Blood' Creator Alan Ball Joining Forces On New HBO Show 'Virtuoso'

EltonDavidCalling all attractive, young musicians! Elton John, hubby David Furnish, and master of television Alan Ball want you to star in their (yes, their) upcoming HBO drama, Virtuoso. Set in 1790's Vienna at an elite music academy, the pilot episode of the new show will have this amazing gay trifecta backing it and they are currently seeking out stars.

Show Biz 411 reports:

The academy is run by our old friend from “Amadeus,” Mozart’s nemesis Antonio Salieri. There’s lots of music, ruffled shirts and sex of all kinds. There are probably a lot of candelabras set on ornate pianos, too. Knowing Ball, a whole universe will be set up for the musicians, the teachers, and the wealthy music patrons of Vienna. Sounds like there might be a lot of private recitals and lessons, as well...

The cable network is also in a deal now with Mick Jagger’s company for a series about rock music in the ’70s with “Boardwalk Empire” writer Terry Winter.

Sounds like fans of Ball and Winter's previous ventures have a lot to look forward to in the coming years. And perhaps Sir Elton will make a virtuosic piano appearance himself? One can only hope.

Will you be tuning in to Virtuoso? Sound off in the comments below!


Elton John Says Jesus Would Support Gay Marriage - VIDEO

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There's a new interview with Sir Elton John, covering topics ranging from his favorite charities (SportsAid) to his plans for marriage to partner David Furnish and his views on the Catholic church.

On this latter topic, the interviewer presses John on whether he believes LGBT priests should be able to get married. What results is a fantastic little tangent:

Of course [they should]. And I don't see why Catholic priests have to be celibate. It's crazy. These are old and stupid things. And the church hierarchy might be, you know, 'up-in-arms' about it, the traditionalists. [But] the times have changed. We live in a different time. If Jesus Christ were alive today... I cannot see him as the Christian person that he was and the great person that he was saying 'this cannot happen.' He was all above love and compassion, and forgiveness, and trying to bring people together. And that's what the church should be about.

Watch the interview, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "Elton John Says Jesus Would Support Gay Marriage - VIDEO" »


Elton John And David Furnish To Marry

Now that marriage equality has finally arrived in England and Wales, Elton John and David Furnish are starting to make plans to get married later this year. The two have been in a civil union since 2005.

Writing in Attitude magazine, Furnish explains the significance of marriage to his family:

John_Furnish"When it was announced that gay couples were able to obtain a civil partnership, Elton and I did so on the day it came into law.

"As something of a showman, [Elton] is aware that whatever he says and does, people will sit up and take notice -so what better way to celebrate that historic moment in time.

"Our big day made the news, it was all over the internet within minutes of happening and front page news the next day."

He continued: "Elton and I both think there is a massive difference between calling someone your 'partner' and calling them your 'husband'. "Partner' is such an impersonal word and doesn't adequately describe the love we have for each other.

"When Zachary and Elijah are grown up and having children of their own, they will – hopefully – be living in a world where everyone can be equal, when being married isn't about whether you're straight or gay, but simply about being human."

Furnish told the the Las Vegas Review-Journal that he and John plan to ditch plans for a big bash:

“We do like big parties,” Furnish said. “Over eight years ago, we had 650 people on the 21st of December at our house in Windsor. But with the kids, everything is different. I think what we’ll do is go to a registry office in England in May, and take the boys with us, and a couple of witnesses.”

The two plan to tie the knot in May.


Friday Afternoon Jam: Miguel feat. Wale Covers 'Bennie and the Jets' — LISTEN

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A remastered version of Elton John's 1973 classic album Goodbye Yellow Brick Road is coming out next week and part of the deluxe edition is a set of nine new cover versions from the LP from Ed Sheeran, Emeli Sandé, Fall Out Boy, Hunter Hayes, Imelda May, John Grant, Miguel featuring Wale, The Band Perry, and Zac Brown Band.

Here is Miguel feat. Wale on "Bennie and the Jets" (via the hairpin). Enjoy.


Bright Light Bright Light and Elton John Duet on 'I Wish We Were Leaving': MUSIC

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Elton John phoned Welsh-born pop artist Bright Light Bright Light (aka Rod Thomas) to compliment him on his debut album and their friendship resulted in this duet, which wasn't originally written as one.

The Guardian reports:

"In time I played him I Wish We Were Leaving and he added his vocals. Although it wasn't written as a duet, I love that his voice taking lead in the second verse is a reminder that every relationship has two sides and two voices."

For Elton it meant working in a slightly different way to what he's been used to: "Working with Bright Light Bright Light was a challenge for me as I love Electronica but am quite ignorant on the recording process. I had to sing in a completely different way which I really enjoyed."

The track is part of an EP of the same name out April 7.

Listen, AFTER THE JUMP...

For more on Bright Light Bright Light, don't miss our Bobby Hankinson's interview with him that we published last June. As well as "Moves", "An Open Heart", and "In Your Care".

Continue reading "Bright Light Bright Light and Elton John Duet on 'I Wish We Were Leaving': MUSIC" »


Elton John Offers to Introduce Vladimir Putin to Gay People

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Over the weekend in a defense of the country's tolerance (cough) of homosexuality, Vladimir Putin told reporters that "Elton John is an outstanding person [and] outstanding musician. Millions of our people sincerely love him despite his orientation."

Elton_johnNow Elton John is responding to Putin's remarks, saying he is "deeply grateful" for the support of the Russian people, and offering to introduce Putin to gay people.

Elton released a statement on his website which reads, in part:

The people I met in Moscow – gay men and lesbians in their 20′s, 30′s and 40′s - told me stories about receiving threats from vigilante groups who would ‘cure’ them of homosexuality by dousing them with urine or beating them up. One young man was stalked outside a gay club by someone posing as a taxi driver who tried to garrotte him with a guitar string because he was a “sodomite”. Everyone shared stories of verbal and physical abuse – at work, in bars and restaurants or in the street – since the legislation came into force last June. And, some of the vital work providing HIV prevention information to the gay community has been labelled “homosexual propaganda” and shut down.

It was very clear to me that, although foreigners like myself who are visiting Russia are not affected by this new law (and President Putin has recently confirmed this), it is a very different story for those living inside the country. As Maria Maksakova told her fellow Russian MPs last month: “We are seeing extremely negative consequences as a result of this law, with the growth of hate crimes.”

President Putin asserts that this was not the intention, but it is undoubtedly the effect that this law has had by promoting misunderstanding and ignorance. In particular, it is very disappointing that the law explicitly links homosexuality with child sex abuse, which countless studies have shown to be conclusively wrong.

The people I met in Moscow were decent, kind, patriotic men and women who had no thought of forcing their sexuality on anyone. Whatever the intention of Russia’s homosexuality and paedophilia propaganda laws, I am absolutely clear from my own personal experience that it is proving deeply dangerous to the LGBT community and deeply divisive to Russian society. I would welcome the opportunity to introduce President Putin to some Russians who deserve to be heard, and who deserve to be treated in their own country with the same respect and warm welcome that I received on my last visit.


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