Melissa Etheridge Hub




MUSIC NEWS: Courtney Love, Melissa Etheridge, Two Door Cinema Club, M.I.A., Regina Spektor; plus win tickets to Sia

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GuestbloggerMODERN TONIC

The editors of Modern Tonic — a free daily email that serves up eclectic pop-culture picks with a homo slant — present a weekly music update here on Towleroad.

RoadFEATURED NEW RELEASES:
 
HolecoverAs TMZ has told us time and again, Courtney Love’s a mess. But she’s put aside the scandals and she’s coming back strong with Hole. Nobody’s Daughter is Love as we like her: 11 caustic tracks of warts-and-all songwriting. When she lets loose with her primal yowl, Nobody’s Daughter is unstoppable. On the scathing single "Skinny Little Bitch" Micko Larkin (from the U.K.’s Larrikin Love) riffs with punk-rock efficiency while Love cuts down a "nasty piece of work." And "Samantha," about a whore who can’t remove "the gutter from the girl," is up there with anything on Live Through This. It’s rock-and-roll unhinged, with a chorus revolving around Love screaming "f**k" like a football chant. The only time Nobody’s Daughter stumbles is when she indulges her mellow side. The album closing "Never Go Hungry" is a whiney downer. But what a relief to see Love make news again for her music.

MelissacoverIt must be tough chick week because right behind the new Hole is Melissa Etheridge. (Um, don’t think too hard on that please.) Fearless Love is her 10th release since her self-titled debut in 1988. That’s 22 years of rock anthems, straight to the soaring title track of her latest. Has Etheridge been listening to Coldplay? Seems so. Those opening piano notes are very "Clocks," while elsewhere there’s some Edge-y U2 guitar work ("The Wanting of You"), some heartland rock ("Miss California") and some ZZ Top Texas swing ("Nervous"). Sure, there’s also some folkiness ("Heaven on Earth") and a few rough-and-tender ballads ("To Be Loved," "Gently We Row"). But after the recent announcement of her separation from her wife Tammy Lynn Michaels, it’s good to hear Etheridge getting fearless again.

TwodoorThe Irish trio Two Door Cinema Club sounds like Vampire Weekend weaned on world music. That is, on their debut Tourist History, they’re punky and maniacally fast but also playful and experimental. Hotly-tipped as a band to watch in 2010 in numerous U.K. year end polls, their debut arrives on our shores lean, mean and ready to make a scene. They rev up jangle pop to a head-spinning speed on "Do You Want It All?" On the U.K. single "I Can Talk" they ape the sinuous angularity of Editors with none of the Gothic overtones. And they out-stomp Franz Ferdinand on the foot-slamming "Come Back Home." The entire album’s a brief, dazzling tour of tasty alt-pop; if it were an actual movie you’d want to see it over and over.

RoadMUSIC NEWS:

SIA RoadWe have four pairs of tickets for Sia's current "The We Meaning You" tour; one pair each in Boston (May 1), Philadelphia (May 2), Washington, D.C. (May 4) and New York City (May 8). Click here to enter; contest ends at noon EST tomorrow (Wednesday April 28) and we will notify winners soon after then. The tour supports Sia's forthcoming album We Are Born, out June 22. See player above for a free download of the Diplo remix of single "Clap Your Hands" and click here for song's video

RoadM.I.A.'s new video was yanked from YouTube for excessive and graphic violence. If you really want to see it, go here.

RoadRapper Eve, dropped from Interscope a few months ago, talks for the first time about the rift with her former label.

USR1000594_210140_reginas.nosurprises RoadRegina Spektor released a  cover of Radiohead's "No Surprises" today to benefit Doctors Without Borders Emergency Relief Fund.

RoadRyan Murphy on the Glee concert tour : New Directions vs. Vocal Adrenaline.

RoadWhitney Houston's tour drama continues apace.

RoadBody Talk, Pt. 1, the first of Robyn's three new albums has leaked in its entirety online seven weeks before the June 15 (U.S.) release date. Here she talks about what's coming in this trilogy.

RoadMORE NEW RELEASES:

The Essential Carole King showcases the Brill Building songwriter in a novel way. Disc one features her 70’s smashes (like "It’s Too Late"); disc two features hits she wrote for others (like "The Loco-Motion"). Either way, you can’t go wrong.

Brazilian rhythms — courtesy of composer Berna Ceppas — highlight the latest Cirque du Soleil extravaganza touring the U.S., Ovo.

BAD Mick Jones’ post-Clash gig, Big Audio Dynamite’s debut gets the double-disc Legacy Edition treatment. This Is Big Audio Dynamite features the hits "E=MC2," "Medicine Show," and some elastic 12" remixes.

Avi Buffalo, four alt-happy young ‘uns from Long Beach, Cali, come on all Shins-y and folksy on their self-titled debut.

Also released:  Crystal Castles — Crystal Castles (digital now, CD May 25); Mary Chapin Carpenter — The Age of Miracles; Bullet for My Valentine — Fever; Balkan Beat Box — Blue Eyed Black Boy; Trashcan Sinatras — In the Music; James — The Night Before (import EP)

RoadMUSIC VIDEOS:

Wideband Network — "Attention"
This futuristic clip adds just the right level of menace to this low-key mid-tempo tale of caution from the Seattle/Toledo electro duo’s third album, Oxygen and Atmosphere.

Devendra Banhart — "Foolin’"
Banhart adds extra freak to his freak folk on his ska-inflected song from last year’s What Will We Be with this clip of a bi-racial same-sex S&M love affair.

The xx — "Islands"
The intimate Londoners translate their minimal electro with modern dancers reenacting each musical motif and variations with elegant precision.

The Bang Bang Club — "Chemistry"
This photogenic UK dance duo strikes evocative black-and-white poses until colorful paint drops stain their suits and they take it full in the face. The tune — like Empire of the Sun with added bass and beats — is from their forthcoming debut.




Melissa and Tammy Etheridge Split

Melissa and Tammy Etheridge are separating, People reports:

Etheridge"The former couple add in a statement: 'We ask for consideration and respect for our family as we go through this difficult period.' Melissa, 48, and Tammy (formerly Tammy Lynn Michaels) exchanged vows in Malibu in September 2003. Tammy, 35, gave birth to their children – son Miller and daughter Johnnie Rose – in 2006, after Etheridge was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2004. Etheridge is also the mother of two children, Bailey, 13, and Beckett, 11, with former partner Julie Cypher.


News: Ganymede, Mark Salling, Eating Disorders, Paula Abdul

RoadUkraine offers deal to Elton John in guardianship of HIV-positive boy?

Paulaabdul RoadPaula Abdul wants Ellen's job now.

RoadCourt: Male teen tried to stab, gas man to death after having sex with him. "Prosecuting counsel Jennifer Blewitt told the court the teenager had been communicating with the man for some time through text messages before he agreed to meet him. The pair then returned to the man’s home for sex and the younger man left afterwards, leaving the kitchen gas turned on and unlit. Soon afterwards, Ms Blewitt said, he returned with the knife and thrust it at the man as he opened the door."

RoadDivas: Kelly Clarkson duets with Melissa Etheridge.

RoadFour gay candidates advance in NYC elections.

RoadBritish school calls emergency assembly over sex change of 12-year-old boy: "What has really upset the parents is that the school didn't see fit to send us a letter first so we could explain it to children in our own way. Maybe we could have explained sexual politics and encouraged our kids to be more sensitive. They were simply told, 'You may notice one pupil is not present in this assembly – that is because the pupil is now a girl'. The girl, as she now is, will go through hell because of how this has been handled."

RoadObama anoints unicorn trend.

Ganymede RoadJupiter's moon Ganymede generates spectacular light shows at planet's poles.

RoadThousands line up for gay and lesbian job fair in NYC.

RoadGLB teens at higher risk for eating disorders: "Among males, the highest risks were seen among homosexuals -- who were seven times more likely to report bingeing and nearly 12 times more likely to report purging than heterosexual males."

RoadInside the secret rallies of Maine marriage equality foes: "The interesting revelation: That it was apparently the Family Research Council's Tony Perkins who requested the media shut-out. Weird, considering this is a man who has never met a camera lens to which he wouldn't lend a talking point."

RoadAmericablog: Who is Barney Frank, anyway?

Glee RoadMohawk lovers: Glee's Mark Salling.

RoadEuropean Parliament condemns homophobic legislation in Lithuania: “It is particularly alarming that the Lithuanian parliament succeeded in passing homophobic legislation under the pretence of child protection, when it is clearly in the best interests of young people to have as much information as possible on these issues. Open discussion among young people is the best way to tackle discriminatory attitudes and the high suicide rates of young people who come out as gay or lesbian."

RoadInsurance company ordered to pay $10 million for revoking policy of 17-year-old college student after he tested positive for HIV.

RoadShirley Tan and her family advocate for immigration in D.C.: "The Tan-Mercado family met with several members of Congress, the staff of numerous additional Congressional offices, and, in a West Wing meeting, White House staffers to press for new cosponsors for the Uniting American Families Act and the House Reuniting Families Act, as well as for inclusion of lesbian and gay binational families in comprehensive immigration reform."


Melissa Etheridge on Rick Warren: We Need to Speak Our Own Truth

Melissa Etheridge appeared on Michelangelo Signorile's radio show yesterday, and discussed Etheridge's embrace of anti-gay Pastor rick Warren following news that he was going to be giving the invocation at Obama's inauguration, as well as the anger from activists who felt she was undermining their message:

Etheridge"I am sorry if they felt like in any way I undermined them. I truly believe everyone has their perspective and position on this. I’m glad for the activists who say this is not right to include someone who has spoke very poorly about a community that got this man elected...I also know I had this experience that I had to speak about...I think the best thing I can do for the gay community is speak my truth and say this is what happened to me...We should hold people accountable. Now, does that mean they are exiled from what we are trying to accomplish here, which is a united America? Or do we say, we see you now? You can’t be part of this party and hide that. I really want people to know that I’m not defending him. Okay, you now (sic), again, it’s such a fine line. And I, in my path and where I’m at, believe that we accomplish more by being present, by being out and open and saying you can no longer do this and we are all in this together. You got up and gave the invocation in front of two million people who wanted change and you are now held responsible. I think change happens when you include, not when you exclude..."

Listen to the whole interview at Signorile's site The Gist.

Previously
Melissa Etheridge Defends Rick Warren on NPR [tr]
Biden, Etheridge Talk Rick Warren as Calls to Dump Him Continue [tr]
Rick Warren Defends Inauguration Invite, Engages Melissa Etheridge [tr]


Melissa Etheridge Defends Rick Warren on NPR

NPR's Guy Raz spoke with Melissa Etheridge about her embrace of Rick Warren on "All Things Considered" on January 3.

EtheridgeExplained Etheridge: "I believe I understand Obama's choice here. I believe that Barack Obama wants to be the President of the entire United States. Pastor Rick Warren reached out to him, brought him into his church during the campaign, which outraged many members of his church. Yet he reaches across and I think this is Obama reaching back and going, 'I think we can disagree on things, yet we can still all move forward. We need to get past our differences.' And I just want to make sure that as the liberals and progressives and Democrats or whatever you want to call us are moving into this new time with this new president do not say that they, the Evangelicals who say such horrible things about gays, they have to stay over here and we're not going to let them in. That makes us no better than the last administration."

After Raz played her the clip of Warren comparing homosexuality to polygamy and incest, Etheridge said:

"Just because he (compares gays to incest or polygamy) does not mean I have to not speak to him, or don't ever want to be in his company. We had a crazy experience at the Muslim Public Affairs Council conference...We met, we spoke. He's a fine person...He said he was trying to make the definition of marriage not change, not necessarily saying that gays are pedophiles or any of that stuff. One can draw whatever they want from that. This is what he told me."

Plus, Warren's a huge fan of her music.

Listen to the interview AFTER THE JUMP...

You may have missed...
Biden, Etheridge Talk Rick Warren as Calls to Dump Him Continue [tr]
Rick Warren Defends Inauguration Invite, Engages Melissa Etheridge [tr]

Continue reading "Melissa Etheridge Defends Rick Warren on NPR" »


Biden, Etheridge Talk Rick Warren as Calls to Dump Him Continue

Bidenwarren

Last night, as I mentioned in a previous post, Vice President-elect Joe Biden appeared on Larry King Live and discussed the Rick Warren controversy. That clip, AFTER THE JUMP...

At the controversy wears on, a united front among LGBT people appears to be slipping away.

DumpwarrenThere are groups, like Californians Against Hate, who call for Obama to dump Warren, and have started a Facebook group and website, DumpRickWarren.com, urging the President-Elect to disinvite the anti-gay pastor from the inaugural ceremonies.

And then there are voices here and there, such as Melissa Etheridge, who calls for the extension of an olive branch to the pastor despite policies barring gays from his church and connections he made of gays with pedophilia, incest, and bestiality, though Etheridge has some odd rationalization for her change of heart in a piece in the Huffington Post:

"I told my manager to reach out to Pastor Warren and say "In the spirit of unity I would like to talk to him." They gave him my phone number. On the day of the conference I received a call from Pastor Rick, and before I could say anything, he told me what a fan he was. He had most of my albums from the very first one. What? This didn't sound like a gay hater, much less a preacher. He explained in very thoughtful words that as a Christian he believed in equal rights for everyone. He believed every loving relationship should have equal protection. He struggled with proposition 8 because he didn't want to see marriage redefined as anything other than between a man and a woman. He said he regretted his choice of words in his video message to his congregation about proposition 8 when he mentioned pedophiles and those who commit incest. He said that in no way, is that how he thought about gays. He invited me to his church, I invited him to my home to meet my wife and kids. He told me of his wife's struggle with breast cancer just a year before mine. When we met later that night, he entered the room with open arms and an open heart. We agreed to build bridges to the future."

And then there are legislators like Barney Frank, who has strongly condemned Obama's decision but expresses hope for his presidency and seems willing to, at the end of the day, move on.

Last night on Hardball, BlogActive's Mike Rogers debated Reverend Eugene Rivers on the Warren flap:

IMHO Obama will never dump Warren. He made a GRAVE miscalculation on the invitation, but the political stakes in dumping Warren are so great, I don't believe it will happen. I believe asking Obama to dump the pastor is the right thing to do, however, and is a direction that should be pursued, but is ultimately a fruitless battle. At the same time, I'm not forgiving like Etheridge. Warren would have to go a hell of a lot further than liking my album (???) for me to suddenly believe he's one of the good guys. Our voices must not weaken on these issues. It is right to continue to condemn the Warren decision, and it shows that not only must we hold Obama to the promises he made to the LGBT people who helped get him elected, we must demand even more.

It is shameful that Obama's campaign of "inclusivity" is to get its first national blessing from a man whose ideology is anything but inclusive. It won't be forgotten until promises, policy, and solid legislation are pursued in the direction of equality for LGBT Americans.

Watch Biden's clip from Larry King, AFTER THE JUMP...

You may have missed...
As Obama Bakes, Rick Warren Controversy Simmers [tr]
Rick Warren Defends Inauguration Invite, Engages Melissa Etheridge [tr]
Rachel Maddow: Could Obama Rescind Rick Warren's Invitation? [tr]
Congressman Barney Frank 'Disappointed' by Warren Invite [tr]
Rick Warren on Why He's Not Homophobic [tr]
Obama Defends Rick Warren's Inauguration Invitation [tr]

Continue reading "Biden, Etheridge Talk Rick Warren as Calls to Dump Him Continue" »


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