Modern Tonic is a free daily email of eclectic pop-culture recommendations — music, movies, DVDs, books and TV — from a gay perspective (sign up here). Founded by Craig Karpel and Marc Mannino, who are also partners in the entertainment marketing/publicity firm The Karpel Group, Modern Tonic has an independent editorial board led by Ari Karpel, who writes for The Advocate, The New York Times and Entertainment Weekly. The editors of Modern Tonic begin a weekly music column on Towleroad today.
Just as Steven Patrick Morrissey approaches his 50th birthday — and on the heels of his latest stellar “comeback” album, Years of Refusal — The Pope of Mope is seeking some retroactive love for two discs from, arguably, his least loved period: the ‘90s.
Maladjusted (out June 9) may never rank with Morrissey’s best, but the nixing of two tracks and the addition of six B-sides (including the bi-curious “I Can Have Both”) makes for a fuller package. (Southpaw Grammar, also expanded and available now as an import, is a revelation.) Listen to an exclusive pre-release stream of the newly revised Maladjusted, in its entirety, below.
From Nip/Tuck to kick/strut: Ryan Murphy’s new high school musical-comedy series Glee premieres after American Idol tonight on Fox. It’s set in what seems to be the gayest town in America and it stars Broadway favorites Matthew Morrison (The Light in the Piazza) and Lea Michele (Spring Awakening). In other words, we already can’t wait for the second episode, which — in an unprecedented move — won’t air until the fall. The premiere episode’s two big musical numbers are on iTunes today: covers of Amy Winehouse’s “Rehab” and Journey’s “Don’t Stop Believin'.” More tracks will be released over the summer and a full soundtrack album in the fall.
Maxwell rocks a hot new look for his first studio album in eight years, BLACKsummers'night (out July 7).
Idol threat or Idol chatter? 2007 American Idol contestant Lakisha Jones debuts with So Glad I’m Me.
Papa Bear Sam Beam aka Iron & Wine releases the b-sides and remakes double disc Around the Well.
Mika — the man who would be Mercury (Freddie, that is) — has a four-track digital EP available only via his website (on CD June 8). Sorrow for Songs features a 68-page booklet of artwork illustrating the aching acoustic songs, with contributions from Peter Blake (who did Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band), comic-book illustrator Jim Woodwing, and many more. Talk about extravaganza! Freddie would be proud.
Ugly Betty's Vanessa Williams and Wicked's Idina Menzel are scheduled to appear at a Human Rights Campaign dinner on February 23rd at the New York Hilton, but transgender groups unhappy over the group's position on ENDA are reportedly trying to derail the appearances.
Via the New York Post: "Both are scheduled to appear at the Human Rights Campaign dinner Feb. 23 at the New York Hilton. The problem is that many homosexual organizations are upset with HRC because the group supported an effort to pass a gay-rights bill that left out the transgender community, which includes pre-op and post-op transsexuals. The pro-transgender activists promise a picket line of demonstrators at the event, and Menzel and Williams are being urged to cancel their appearances."
Williams, who stars opposite Rebecca Romijn's transgender character on Ugly Betty, is scheduled to receive HRC's 'Ally for Equality' award, and Menzel is scheduled to perform at the gala event.