Honey Soundsystem ending Sunday parties: SF so over now :/


That sound you hear right now? Every cool gay and/or techno nerd in the city rending their exquisitely positioned garments. Honey Soundsystem has just announced via newsletter that Oct. 20 will see the end of its weekly Sunday party at Holy Cow, one of the best overall club nights in the world. 

“We started out wanting to make house and techno a regular thing for queens — and we did that and now it’s time to move on,” DJ P-Play of the collective told me. “We’re glad the party is so good right now, and we’re stopping it while it’s hot.

“We’re confident enough to move in a direction where people have to think again. Where we’re going with the music, together and individually, is too complicated for a weekly night.

“Now it’s up to the queens of SF to decide if they want to continue to keep this city interesting, or if they’re going to settle for the same top 40 bullshit.”

The importance of the five-year-old Honey Sundays can’t be overstated — starting with the fact that they filled the gaping hole in SF Sunday nightlife left by the End Up’s death spiral, and climaxing with an absolutely insane weekly lineup of challenging international underground artists, gay and straight, brought to a hungry, globally hooked-in audience here. Basically, you’re nothing if you don’t play Honey now.

The weekly family affair also introduced a new generation to the intellectual art of throwing a party: the soundsystem was unafraid to get hyperconceptual and subversively arty with its promotional material, themes, decor, and one-off locations. And the sheer diversity of the people behind the decks each week was almost single-handedly holding up SF’s rep as a cultural Mecca. (I’m kidding about SF being totally over — there are still some great parties. Look, though, we are getting a bit same-y in the nightlife department.) 

Honey Sundays took the effort. But yeah, maybe it’s time to move on. “Jason Kendig is being recognized on an international level,” P-Play says, rattling off the Honey members’ accomplishments. “Robot Hustle is touring live as Bezier. Josh Cheon runs one of the most respected labels in the world right now. And my work with Luther and as Jackie House is taking off.” (P-Play’s being modest — he was actually behind about five of the biggest and best Folsom parties this year.) He also compared the ending to the finale of Kontrol, SF’s mainstay techno party, some of whose promoters went on to become world-famous DJs. 

Plus Honey’s ending on a high note. “It’s an inevitable, poetic idea that we want to give back, give something really back,” P-Play said. “Our last night is the release party of our double album of Patrick Cowley’s lost gay porn soundtracks, School Daze, something we feel really completes a kind of journey for us. We’re going until 4am. It’s the day after what would have been our idol Cowley’s 63rd birthday — it won’t be sad, it will be a celebration.”

Breathe, queens, Honey’s not totally dispersing — they promise to be back soon with great things. And they’ll be teaming up with the No Way Back crew to bring in Norwegian heavy hitter Rodhad for Halloween, and then in November are doing something big for Bear Pride Weekend, which is an actual thing happening.

“We’re not giving people their weekly fix anymore, they’re going to have to stir the pot,” P-Play said.

And what of the poor souls who show up the Sunday after Honey’s ended? “They’re idiots,” P-Play declares. “They’re not our crowd, and not the people we want to play for anyway.”

Get the memo, honey. I’m gonna go cry now. Here’s the full release from Honey HQ:

Dear Honey Bee,

It is without regret we inform you that the next 3 Sundays will see the end of our 5 years as a weekly party.

In our 7 year history as a crew we tasked ourselves with reinventing queer nightlife for all our friends, allies and supporters. We have and will continue to bring the highest quality sounds from the underground and create a safe space for people of all walks to mingle, dance and be free.

But in order for us to grow even further, we need to shed our old skin to create a new one. The party itself – whether at the Holy Cow, the Paradise Lounge or those that can recall back to our days at The Transfer or the Mineshaft Basement Parties – has always been a party on the move. We will be going back to our roots, but with a more direct line to the future. This is not a disappearing act, this is taking ownership of the destinies of everyone who has participated, supported and danced at our parties. This farewell is quite temporary, for you will soon be transported back to our dance floor as though it were all a dream…

For the final Honey Soundsystem experience at Holy Cow on October 20th, 2013 we pay tribute to Patrick Cowley’s life in our third installment of Megatron Man to celebrate the release of the 2×12” “School Daze”! The release features soundtracks to John Coletti’s pornographic films from FOX Studio that were long forgotten but now resurrected for your listening pleasure. Restoring these tapes to our fans marks the full cycle of what Honey has strived to achieve – bringing you timeless sounds from all eras of dance music, grounded in foundations of queer history.

See you on the dancefloor,

Honey Soundsystem



Here, piggies: Quick ‘n dirty Folsom party guide


Folsom season has started and already many can’t sit still — mostly because of the welts on their tuckuses. But they can still dance! Even the ones suspended in cellophane cocoons. Here’s a quick rundown of recommended parties at which to whip it good. (Everybody loves a link dump! Especially when I’m this hungover. )



>>THE TUBESTEAK CONNECTION: The original down and dirty Tenderloin bathhouse disco revival weekly party at Aunt Charlie’s Lounge — courtesy of DJ Bus Station John — is always a special place at Folsom. 10pm-2am, $5. 

>>TOUCH OUR JUNK: All the cool kids are getting together at fabulously sleazy Tenderloin gay strip club Nob Hill Theater for a fun little romp. 8:30-11pm, $7.

>>CUB CAMP: I hung out with the nasty Torontonian cuties throwing this party at the Lookout last night, and they are truly nasty and truly cute! 10pm-2am, $7.

>>TWIN PEAKS PARTY: Just throwing this in as a wild card — but they are turning the Showdown bar into a Twin Peaks set and an Angelo Badalamenti band is playing, with free pie. Lynchy! 10pm, free I think.



>>STEAM: Awfully cute DJ Harry Cross from Chicago turns out this fun, charitable, and, yes, steamy wet towel-themed party at Powerhouse. Some hot straight boys! 9pm-2am, $8.

>>BEARRACUDA: Ugh, bears! I love ’em, even though they’re the popular kids. And I actually have a great rip-roarin time at this huge party at Public Works. 9pm-4am, $20 advance.

>>PEGASUS 3: The city’s neatest menswear store, Sui Generis, is having its annual mixer, sure to be a hot beard-a-palooza. 7-10pm, free.

>>HYSL: “Handle Your Shit Lady!” Scandalous-sounding party at the Lookout with Two Dudes in Love DJing. 9pm-2am, $3.

>>SOME THING MANLY: The great Drag Queen of Soul, Juanita More, pays thribute to James Brown, Elvis, and other manly musical men at this awesome art-drag dance party. With 1000 other queens at the Stud. 10pm-4am, $8. 



>>LUTHER: Great techno party from the infamous entity known as Luther, sure to sizzle your cockles, and those of hundreds of other cool sexies. 10pm-4am, $15-$20. 

>>DARK ROOM: Dark electronic body music and a cast of future-goth performers (including electro punky High Functioning Flesh) make this the dress-up party dungeon you’re looking for. 9:30pm-2am, $7.

>>RAIME: Dark UK electronic duo will beat you into submission with an audio-visual experience to die for, at Balancoire. 10pm-2am, $15. 

>>INFAMOUS UNIFORM PARTY: The dykealicious Lexington Club orders you to dress up and have hot grrrls. 9pm-2am, free.



>>DEVIANTSHard-driving Russian techno hottie DJ Boris headlines this, THE party for hip Folsom people into music and sweaty dancing — not just strutting and preening. Two venues, large outdoor space, soul grooves from Hard French, plus a ton more dirty stuff, of course. Of course! 4:30pm-2am, $25-$35.

>>GLORY HOLE: During Folsom Street Fair and after, large and lovely space Tank 18 is hosting a wild party with DJs from lovely disco-revival party Go Bang! and more (including my hot friend Juan — someone pick him up already!). Full bar! 1-10pm, $5. 



Put up your dukes: 40 years of SF’s Grand Ducal Council


The global gay charitable network (which started in SF) known as the Imperial Council has been in the news of late: Empress I, Jose Sarria, the Widow Norton, passed away earlier this month and was given a grand funeral at Grace Cathedral that was covered throughout the world.

Now the other major Court Council, the Grand Ducal Council of San Francisco, founded to have a bit more fun, is also getting some attention. On Sat/28 the SF Grand Ducal Council SF Grand Ducal Council will crown the newly elected monarchs for the 40th Reign. at an elaborate and festive coronation event, open to all. (Elections were held last Saturday, and we won’t know who won until the ceremony.)

The theme, chosen by outgoing monarchs Paloma Volare and Moses “Moe Jo” Garcia is “Dancing With the Czars at the Ice Castle.” I exchanged emails with Moe Jo about the theme, the Council, and the Grand Ducal mission:

SFBG Tell us a little about the Grand Ducal Council and what you do.
MOE JO The San Francisco Council of Grand Dukes and Grand Duchesses, Inc., also known as the San Francisco Ducal Council, was founded in 1972 to provide diverse areas of the San Francisco community with charitable and personal support, and has positively affected hundreds of people and groups that may be overlooked by other fundraising organizations. The Ducal Council receives no support from government resources, and depends on fundraisers such as this event (the coronation), and donations from individuals and business.

SFBG Do you feel like you and Paloma accomplished what you set out to do during your reign?
MOE JO Absolutely, when we first started this reign back in September 2012 we both wanted to reach out even more to parts of the community that previously we barely had touched. We had a plan to reach out to the Latino and Transgender communities, plus we wanted to educate the LGBT community even more on what the Grand Ducal Council of San Francisco is all about. I truly believe that we did accomplish those goals. Furthermore, we reached out to new people and as a result we have four or more new members that hold permanent titles (Royal Daddy’s Boy, Royal Baby Boy and Girl, Mr. Royal Bunny, etc.).

SFBG Can you tell me a bit about the Coronation? The theme intrigues me! What can we expect? Is there anything super-special for the 40th year?
MOE JO “Coronation XL (40): Dancing With the Czars at the Ice Castle” will be a celebration of what the Grand Ducal Council of San Francisco is all about… Diversity! We will be celebrating all cultures and different countries that we represent. The audience will be taken to a place where Royalty, fashion, and glamor will be showcased. There will be several surprises during coronation, and the only way anyone will experience them is if they attend this wondrous event!

Obviously the death of Jose, Empress I affected the Council. Will there be a special tribute?
MOE JO Most definitely, we will have a memorial at the entrance of the ballroom with an oversized picture and beautiful red roses surrounding it. We have also included a special page in our coronation book where we have placed individuals who we have lost in the past year to let them know that although they are gone, they will never be forgotten.

SFBG Will you miss wearing your crown and cape? Or do you get to keep them?
MOE JO Having a crown for the year was very nice. Although the crown was never the main point of the reign, it sure felt good to wear it from time to time. Unfortunately, we do not get to keep the crown: on the night of coronation, I will be crowning the new Grand Duke so the crown I wore this year I will be placing it on his head. I can honestly say I will not miss the crown, I did everything in my power to raise a lot of money and we raised over $53,000 for local charities. I worked hard and did all I could, and I am very proud of this great achievement… A crown? I am sure I will purchase one down the road… 🙂

Grand Ducal Coronation XL (40): Dancing With the Czars at the Ice Castle

Sat/28, 5pm, $40

Hotel Whitcomb

1231 Market, SF.

Special thanks to volunteer of the year Colby Michaels for helping with this interview.

Fluffy Bunners: Filthy, funny Lady Bunny comes to SF


“Oh it’s hot and it’s sticky and it’s naaaaasty,” said drag goddess Lady Bunny of the current New York City summer weather. “And that’s just how I like it. The kind of men I like can’t afford to leave the City when it’s hot, so they just have to strip down and stay put, right where I can get at ’em.

“Let those other queens got to Provincetown or Fire Island or wherever. Lady Bunny’s got everything she needs right here: sweaty men and a big can of hairspray.”

Watch you don’t explode there, Bunion! We need you to make that flight to San Francisco to star at the weekly Some Thing party on Fri/2 (10pm-late, $8. The Stud, 399 Ninth St., SF.)

Speaking of which, does Miss Bun-Bun have to buy an extra seat on the plane for her trademark ginormous blonde wig? 

“No, just for my fat ass! And then I have to buy another seat for the scabies.”

But then her voice dropped into a more serious register — these were her wigs after all — and she said, “You know, it’s sometimes nervewracking to travel with my priceless hair sculptures. But I’ve just learned to stack them in a carry-on and then I just tease them when I bring them out. I don’t know how to do all the hot rollers and other things the queens all do.

“Marke, I’m just a tomboy with makeup and a poor taste in clothes.” 

Lady Bunny was off and running in her trademark perky Southern drawl from the second she picked up her landline for our chat. Landline? Please tell me at least she has a Princess Phone. “Oh no, just a regular old phone. I heard Carol Channing still had her landline and I just love her. Of course, mine has those big buttons for seniors.”

I’ve known Bunny since way back in her Wigstock days, when she hosted the huge outdoor drag festival that ruled the NYC gay scene for like 3000 years (1984-2005).

And it’s kind of wonderful, the way she moved to NYC from Atlanta on a wing and a prayer in the ’80s with RuPaul — and adorable DJ Larry Tee, who invented electroclash and has been seen here a bunch of times lately — and now, she’s a TV personality as Dean of Drag on RuPaul’s Drag U. show and celebrity judge on Drag Race, as well as remaining one of Ru’s besties. Clubkids: all grown up!

“I got on fabulously with every queen on Drag Race that I met — except one, who shall remain nameless, but I think everyone knows who she is,” drops Bunny casually. “I mean, I know nothing about reality TV. I grew up with Lucille Ball and Leave It To Beaver. But I do love a paycheck, so why not?”

As ever though, Bunny is appearing all over with her comedy parodies of hit songs, her filthy double-entendres — and now with a cute club-ready song of her own, “Take Me Up,” which showcases her more serious singing talents. In as much as Bunny can ever be serious.

Oh, wait on that — Lady Bunny does have a second reputation, beyond the wigs and parodies, as an outspoken political commentator. Her blog is usually aflame with her acerbic sentiments, some of which can cause even seasoned political observers to grasp their burning ears. (For her recent thoughts on SF, check this out.)

“How can I keep my mouth shut when there’s so many travesties, so much injustice going on. I mean, take that incident recently when Michelle Obama told the protesting lesbian to be quiet or leave that fundraiser — and it was like the whole gay community was saying, ‘Go Michelle!’ But that woman was raising attention about how we don’t have rights, how we still don’t have the same rights as everybody else. And the gay community was telling her to be quiet! These kinds of things enrage me, so I let it all out. Anger is a very potent emotion!”

Does she ever let it all out on stage? “Oh you know, people want the comedy, they want the parodies, and to be entertained. They don’t want some queen browbeating them about political stuff in the middle of their party.”

So what can we expect when she hits Some Thing on Friday? “I’m so excited to be back in SF — I’m an ooooooold friend of [Some Thing party founders] Glamamore and Juanita More. And I even patched things up regarding an old fight with Heklina. I’ll have to find something else to fight with her about now!

“But, you know, it’s just going to be me up there with my dirty jokes and my filthy mind and a little music — straight out of the gutter and on your face!”


Nothing could be more super duper than ‘So Super Duper’


On Saturday evening in the Castro at 7pm, quite possibly one of the gayest things ever will occur, as queer comics artist Brian Andersen debuts his colorful new teen-friendly, straight-friendly, unabashedly queer So Super Duper volume, which stars “a little gay empathic hero (he can read emotions) named Psyche who doesn’t quite know he’s gay yet – even though it’s painfully obvious to everyone around him.”

It is so cute. And gloriously upping the pink quotient at the book launch, nationally televised diva Jason Brock will be hitting some high notes (he basically ruled the Bike Music Festival a few weeks back). Comics, superheroes, man-divas: It’s a gaysplosion.

I asked the infectiously smiley Brian to talk a little about the So Super Duper‘s inspiration, and he had some very interesting things to say about being a proud femme-y gay guy in a world of macho stereotypes. 

SF Bay Guardian Can you tell me a bit about what inspired you to create such a “super duper” gay hero?

Brian Andersen I’m inspired by my love of comic books, an everlasting and unwavering love for the medium since I was a skinny, gawky, goobery eight-year-old boy saving his recycling money to pick up the latest issue of the X-Men. I still live, breath, and love comic books 30 years and 100 pounds later. 

As for the hero, Psyche, himself, there does seem to be a backlash in the gay community on femme guys. So much attention is put on being “masculine” that often I get online trolls attacking me because my lead character is too “stereotypically gay.” Which is ironic because he’s based off myself! I’m a fruity gay. And so what? I don’t try to be; I’m not putting on some affectation or playing a role in an effort to be more “gay” (whatever that means).

I’m just me. If people can tell I’m gay from space I don’t care! I like being me and I don’t feel the need to try to put on a false masculine identity in order for me to “fit in” with what’s considered sexy and hot in my community. I’d rather be a sexy and hot slightly effeminate gay dude with a few extra pounds and a heart of gold! Just like Julia Roberts in ‘Pretty Woman.’ (She was a gay dude in that movie, right?)

SFBG Is this a “steamy” comic?

BA Although most local indie gay comics revolve around the erotic side of the spectrum (a side I fully and literally embrace) “So Super Duper” isn’t a gay comic based on gay sex (which I also fully and literally embrace. Often.). In fact, there is nary a sex scene at all in “So Super Duper.” There be smooches, oh yes, there be smooches, but overall the gayness of my character isn’t tied solely on whom he likes to sleep with.

SFBG Psyche is based on yourself — do you consider yourself a bit of a superhero?

BA Well, I’m actually a wanted felon from the Shi’ar interplanetary space system. OK, I grew up in small three-bedroom home in Northern California, I don’t presently have superpowers but as a boy I kept diving into toxic waste in the hopes it would eventually bear fruition, I went to Brigham Young University – so yes, I’m another one of those gay Mormons that keep popping up in SF. I didn’t come out as full-fledged homo until I was 26 (a lifetime in modern gay years), and I’ve been with the same man – my first boyfriend ever – for 12 years and we’re still not sick of each other. Yet.

SFBG That’s definitely something super duper!


Sat/13, 7pm-8:30pm, free

Whatever Comics

548 Castro, SF.



We are the weirdos, mister


FILM RuPaul’s Drag Race season four winner Sharon Needles and boyfriend/season five finalist Alaska Thunderfuck rarely do live shows together. But for Peaches Christ, and her stage-and-screen showing of witchtacular occult movie The Craft (1996), they made an exception.

The Pittsburgh-based couple will star alongside one another in Christ’s Craft-based pre-movie play, as pure evil “Nancy” (originally played to perfection by wild-eyed, real life Wiccan actress Fairuza Balk) and Neve Campbell’s scarred and shy “Bonnie.” The rest of the gothy teen coven will be filled out by Christ as good witch “Sarah” and San Francisco’s first RuPaul’s Drag Race contestant Honey Mahogany as “Rochelle.”

“It’s such a foursome vehicle,” Christ says in a phone call. “I said to Sharon, ‘how do you feel about working with your boyfriend?’ Obviously it makes more sense for them to split themselves up and do more gigs. And especially since Sharon was such a phenomenon and Alaska is now coming fresh off the show, and she was such a hit. But I said, ‘see if you’ll make an exception for me?'”

Christ has been sending up cult classics in San Francisco since 1998, and says that it’s become increasingly clear that she needs to keep looking for newly cult titles. (This November look out for 9 to 5 with Pandora Boxx , and likely, a Clueless send-up.) “[The Craft] was brought to my attention by some of my fans these past few years, so I rewatched it and determined like, oh my god, why did I ever dismiss this? It’s witchy goth girls. It’s everything, it’s grunge, it’s goth, it’s witch.”

And Thunderfuck and Needles were both enamored of the film from an early age.

“It was like, one of those movies that everyone knew and saw when I was in high school and it made us feel like we were witches too, which we weren’t, we were just like, nerdy theater kids,” Thunderfuck nasally says from a Best Western hotel in Chicago. “But it made us feel really badass. And everyone was a weirdo in high school anyway.”

“And I’m from the ’90s so the witchcraft was always there,” Needles adds.

The film has grown cult thanks to now-iconic scenes of the witches looking fierce at Catholic school, walking in a line down the hallways with sexy ’90s music filling the montages. Favorites scenes by the performers include the ones of the witches down at the beach, intensely invoking “Manon” then passing out after an electric bolt hits Nancy, or the next morning, walking by beached whales and sharks, or giddily casting spells on another while driving through town, or vividly messing with teen-queen parties, and throwing sleazy jerks out of windows.

During our conversation, Needles perfectly intones the Nancy line, “then why are you still bleeding?!”

“I’ll tell you, this was one of the hardest and most challenging stage plays I’ve ever had to write, because the movie is so full of moments that people love, trying to cram them into a 50-minute stage show was almost impossible — I had to go back in and kind of kill babies here and there,” Christ says. “My memory of it was that it was a lot tamer, and a lot more PG-13 then it is. It’s actually rated R and it’s harsh, and in some ways really horrifying. The way the girls treat each other, even despite the violence or the snakes — I hate snakes — just the meanness of the witches.”

That meanness should play out in some deviously amusing ways during Christ’s The Craft: Of Drag show before the film. The queens play themselves emulating characters in the movie, with key scenes thrown in (someone will get thrown out of a window, and there will be a levitating “light as a feather, stiff as a board” moment) — but with a Drag Race twist. The reason the witches all turn on Christ’s “Sarah” this time, is because she’s never been on Drag Race.

This inevitably leads to the question of why not? “I don’t think I’d survive,” Christ says. “I’ve said this to Sharon, I admire them so much for being able to go on that show but Peaches is a very established character that I’ve been doing for a long, long, long time, so it’s very hard for me in a lot of ways to be flexible. You know, I always wear that Bozo the Clown paint, and I just know I’d be ripped to shreds,” she says. Though she has been sending out signals to producers World of Wonder and RuPaul that she should come on as a guest judge for a hypothetical Scream Queen challenge.

It was the show, however, that first introduced her to Needles — Elvira was the guest judge on the first episode of Needles’ season, and she fell in love with the queen (who spurts blood from her mouth during her runway walk). Elvira immediately told Christ, and that’s why she first reached out to Needles, last year.

Along with heaps of praise for Elvira, and the show in general, Needles and Thunderfuck both tell me the drama in their seasons was all real.

Says Needles, “When you take 13 adult males and dress them up like teenage girls, take away their cigarettes and booze, and force them in front of a camera for 16 hours a day for two months, you don’t need a producer or a storyboard, it writes itself.”


Sat/13, 3pm and 8pm, $25

Castro Theatre

429 Castro, SF

Possibly the coolest queer mental health concert tour ever


Accidental Bear Queer Music Summer Tour Benefit for LGBTQ Mental Health Services and Suicide Prevention. Now, that’s a mouthful.

“It’s the longest, most ridiculous title ever,” Accidental Bear blog owner and founder Mike Enders said in a Guardian interview.

It’s basically a really queer, really cool music concert series travelling to five cities with performances by Logan Lynn, Big Dipper, Conquistador, Darling Gunsel, and Rica Shay, who all put a different spin on the concept of “queer music.”

But it’s also a two-fer. It’s giving exposure to the bands playing while raising money to donate to LGBT foundations in support of mental health including the San Francisco-based Stonewall Project, the LAGay and Lesbian Center, Ali Forney Center, Pride Foundation, and Q Center.

“All of these people [performing] are up-and-coming and some people have been around longer than others,” Enders said. “I wanted to have people who are going to draw a crowd and each one of these bands has their own group or pull.”

There are some big characters and personalities performing, and it’s going to be a high energy show. It’s also something you don’t want to bring your grandma to.

“Parts of the show are going to be X-rated,” Enders said. “Not like, nude, but Big Dipper, he has a lot of songs about his private parts. His version of the twerking that’s going on, is a song he has out called ‘Dick Bounce.’”

The Accidental Bear Tour is going to be a fun, queer time that also aims to eliminate the stigma that surrounds mental health and bring awareness to the alarming rates of suicide in the LGBTQ community.
Enders has a personal connection to the cause as well.

“In 2007, I started having these out-of-the-blue horrible panic attacks. And, being someone who didn’t have a lot of money, that was uninsured, I couldn’t find a resource, couldn’t find anybody to help,” Enders said.

He went to LGBT-specific services that couldn’t help due to him being uninsured, or being put on the end of a waiting list.

“I ended up in the emergency room,” Enders said. “If you’re unaware of what’s actually happening with a panic attack, a lot of times people think they’re having a heart attack. It was just kind of an eye opener. Luckily, I had good support around me, but I just realized there’s a real lack in services.

“The fact is, everyone in their life has dealt with a mental health issue. It’s kind of embarrassing admitting it now. It’s weird with the stigma to it.”

Tickets start at $15, and are on sale now. The tour kicks off here in San Francisco on July 5 at Beatbox, and will travel to LA, Portland, Seattle, and finish in New York City on the 19th.

“This is something that the queer world is missing right now,” Enders said. “Everything right now’s like DJs and dance music.”

The Accidental Bear Tour features dance, rap, hip hop, and electro music – a little something for everyone.

It’s going to be a great, big, gay time, with awesome performances while simultaneously fighting for a good cause.


8pm, $15
314 11th St., SF.

Images from a big gay victory celebration


It was an amazing day of celebration in San Francisco yesterday, from the early morning crowd that gathered in City Hall to hear the ruling legalizing same-sex marriages in California to the evening celebration in the Castro. Here are some of the faces of that celebration by photographer Tim Daw (except the Newsom image, which was taken by Steven T. Jones)

Supreme Court same-sex marriage decisions: DOMA invalidated, Prop 8 case dismissed, SF reacts [UPDATED]


Watch this space throughout the day for breaking news on the decision and reactions. Tonight there will be a celebration of the Court’s decisions at Castro and Market Streets at 6:30pm. (Join  the Guardian beforehand, 6-9 at the Pilsner in the castro, at its annual pre-Pride event.) 


The Supreme Court released its ruling this morning that the Defense of Marriage Act, which denies federal recognition of same-sex marriage, “is unconstitutional as a deprivation of the equal liberty of persons that is protected by the Fifth Amendment.”

“DOMA singles out a class of persons deemed by a State entitled to recognition and protection to enhance their own liberty,” according to the majority opinion. “DOMA’s principal effect is to identify a subset of state sanctioned marriages and make them unequal.” The Court voted 5-4, with Justice Kennedy, who wrote the majority opinion, as the decisive vote along the usual liberal/conservative lines. You can read the full opinion here

This means that same-sex marriages performed in states that have legalized such marriages will be recognized by federal law.  


As for Hollingsworth v. Perry, the Prop 8 case, it was dismissed on standing, due to the fact that the State of California refused to defend the case that would uphold Prop 8 (which denied same-sex marriage).That meant private citizens were left to defend a state statute, which was unprecedented, and the Court refused to rule on those grounds.

We have never before upheld the standing of a private party to defend the constitutionality of a state statute when state officials have chosen not to. We decline to do so for the first time here,” the majority Court statement (which broke along the typical 5-4 line) said. That means there is no specific decision from the Court regarding Prop 8, and the previous ruling, by Judge Vaughan Walker and upheld by the Ninth Circuit Court, that invalidated Prop 8 as discriminatory, stands.

This may mean that same-sex marriages in California can resume as early as July.

You can read the full Prop 8 ruling here.

Scene this morrning at SF City Hall, with Mayor Ed Lee and Lt. Gov. Newsom. Photo by Dan Bernal.


Steven T. Jones reports from SF City Hall:

City Hall was totally packed at 7am when the US Supreme Court convened — tons of journalists, lots of couples, many signs in the crowd. Two screens were set up, one with a live blog from court chamber, the other with the CNN live feed. Huge cheers erupted at 7:11 when the decision was announced striking down DOMA and forcing the federal government to recognize the rights of same-sex married couples.  Then at 7:38, when the Prop 8 statement came down, the room went nuts. 

A moment later, an array of current and former city officials appeared at the top of the City Hall main staircase. Mayor Ed Lee and Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom escorted a fragile Phyllis Lyon down the stairs — she, along with the late Del Martin, were the first same-sex couple to get legally married in California in 2004 — flanked by the rest of the city family, all with big smiles.

“Welcome to the people’s house of San Francisco,” Mayor Lee said, thanking the crowd “for sharing in this historic moment.”

“It feels good to have love triumph over ignorance,” he said.

At 7:44, City Attorney Dennis Herrera and Chief Deputy City Attorney Terry Stewart, who had been on the City Hall steps addressed reporters’ question on the legal details of the ruling, joined the crew to sustained applause as Lee recognized them. He then introduced Newsom, who in 2004 as San Francisco mayor allowed same-sex marriages to be performed, as “one person who used the power of this office to make history and show his love for the city.”

“San Francisco is not a city of dreamers, but a city of doers,” Newsom said. “Here we don’t just tolerate diversity, we celebrate our diversity.” He thanked Herrera and everyone who contributed to this moment. “It’s people with a true commitment to equality that brought us here.”

Newsom introduced Kate Kendall with the National Center for Lesbian Rights, who has led the coalition of groups that have push for marriage equality. She looked around the crowd and said, “Fuck you, Prop 8!”

The crowd roared, and she said that she had scanned the room for children, and promised to “put a dollar in the swear jar” if necessary. But she said that, “We have lived for too many years under that stigmatizing piece of crap.”

Then Herrera took the podium, turned to Newsom, and said, Now you can say, ‘Whether you like it or not!'” — a joking reference to Newsom’s same-sex marriage rallying cry, which some blamed for boosting the anti-same-sex marriage cause.

“We wouldn’t be here today if it wasn’t for Gavin Newsom’s leadership,” Herrera continued. ““I remember in 2004 when people were saying it was too fast, too soon, too much.”

But today, that long effort has been vindicated, Now, he said, “It’s about changing the hearts and minds of people and educating them.” He also pledged to continue the fight that began here in City Hall more than nine years ago: “We will not rest until we have marriage equality throughout this country.”

Gavin Newsom being interviewed inside City Hall. Photo by Steve Jones

Finally Stewart, who has argued cases related to San Francisco’s stand before both the US and California Supreme Courts, praised both the Prop. 8 and DOMA rulings and the precedents they set. “In the DOMA case decision, the Supreme Court expressed a stong equal protection philosophy…that will help legalize same sex marriage in other states.”

Three members of the Board of Supervisors were also invited by Kendell to address the huge City Hall crowd: Board President David Chiu and Sups. David Campos and Scott Wiener, the only two current supervisors who are gay.

Chiu noted that the bust of slain Sup. Harvey Milk is prominently positioned outside the Board Chambers, a reminder of the long struggle for gay rights that San Franciscans have led. “That work lives on today,” he said.

He added the hope that the work done here will ripple out of across the country because, he said, “As goes San Francisco, so goes California, so goes the rest of the country.”

Campos, an attorney who has long been in a committed relationship, said, “It’s a very emotional moment for those of us who are part of the LGBT community.” He said this Supreme Court ruling is the first time it has really acknowledged “that we are people and we have dignity,” and that the rulings sends a clear message to Congress that legislation like DOMA is unconstitionally discriminatory.

Wiener praised the resilience of the LGBT community, from the early days of enduring the AIDS crisis and fighting for federal support through the current campaign for marriage equality. And he cheered the fact that, “Those marriages that we see under the rotunda [in City Hall] will get a little more diverse.”

11:30 AM UPDATE: Style and substance

While Newsom strutted around like a proud peacock in front of City Hall — clearly the leading man in this epic story with the happy ending, much in demand by the television crews — Herrera and Stewart briefed various reporters on the details of the case that they had just won.

Gavin Newsom outside City Hall. Photo by Steve Jones.

“I wanted a merits ruling, but a standing ruling is a victory too,” Herrera told us, making the distinction between the court ruling that banning same-sex marriage is unconstitutional on the grounds of equal protection under the law — which it did not do — and the 5-4 ruling it did issue: that those who appealed the Ninth Circuit Court ruling invalidating Prop. 8 lack proper legal standing to do so.

The standing ruling leaves same-sex marriage opponents more wiggle room to argue that the ruling might only apply to the couples named in the suit, or in just the counties that took part, which also included Alameda and Los Angeles, positions they were already signaling in press statements.

But Herrera said that he would vigorously contest that kind of challenge, which he considers to be without merit, telling us, “The injunction is not limited in its scope.”

UPDATE: SFPD isn’t worried

Police Chief Greg Suhr, who attended the City Hall event, said the timing on the ruling during Pride Week couldn’t be better. “It’s nice that it all lined up for us,” he told us. “This town is going to rock ‘til the wheels come off.”

Asked whether he has any heightened security concerns about the Pride Parade in the wake of a ruling that is controversial to some, Suhr said that he’s not worried. He said SFPD is now fully staffed and all available personnel working this weekend, although he will try allow many of his gay and lesbian officers to join the celebration if they want.

“We’re going to police what’s likely to be the biggest party this city has ever seen,” Suhr said, adding that his policing philosophy is, “We plan for the worst and hope for the best.”


Ohmigod, fine, we’re that gay: Here’s the Tonys great opening number


I was actually upset that Bette Midler did not get nominated. What is happening to me? Call out the jazz-hands police, I’m dancing along with Neil Patrick Harris tonight. PS: Mike Tyson. 

Guest opinion: LGBT supporters of Bradley Manning


Editor’s note: At least 24 LGBT community leaders and activists have signed on to the following statement in support of Bradley Manning as a Pride grand marshal.

Recently, it was announced that PFC Bradley Manning would be a grand marshal of the 2013 San Francisco Pride Celebration. We felt this decision was a bold and uplifting choice, bestowing a great honor on a young whistleblower being persecuted for following his conscience.

Much to our disappointment, two days later SF Pride board president Lisa Williams issued a separate announcement that the SF Pride board would not be honoring PFC Manning as a grand marshal after all.  It appears the SF pride board’s reversal was affected by criticism from a recently formed gay military rights group. 

We want the world to know that the SF Pride board’s decision is not reflective of the LGBTQ community as a whole, and that many of us proudly celebrate PFC Manning as a member of our community.  Unfortunately, the statements by Williams, and the group which originally advocated against PFC Manning as grand marshal, continue to perpetuate certain factual inaccuracies with regards to the military prosecution against him. 

The first inaccuracy would be that PFC Manning did not advocate for gay rights.  In fact, while serving in the military, PFC Manning experienced harassment and physical assault because of his perceived sexuality.  He responded by marching against Don’t Ask Don’t Tell in the DC pride parade, where he spoke to reporters about his position, in addition to attending a fundraiser with Gavin Newsom and the Stonewall Democrats so he could discuss the issue of homophobia in the military.  He told a friend in February of 2009 that his experience living under DADT and experiencing the oppression that entailed helped increase his interest in politics more generally.

LGBTQ activists fought hard for years to win the right to live free from the fear that we could be targeted with violence deemed acceptable to society at large, simply for being who we are.  We members of the LGBTQ community would like to stand in solidarity with others around the world who still must live in fear of violence and oppression, simply for being born into a particular group.

Contrary to SF Pride Board president Lisa Williams’s claim, no evidence has been presented that PFC Manning’s actions endangered fellow soldiers or civilians. In fact, the military prosecution has successfully argued in court that it isn’t required to provide such evidence, and former State Department spokesperson P.J. Crowley continues to insist that the “Aiding the enemy” charge is unwarranted. 

In a February 28, 2013, court statement, PFC Manning detailed the due diligence he performed prior to releasing materials to ensure this lack of harm, in addition to explaining,

“I believed the detailed analysis of the [Iraq and Afghanistan war log] data over a long period of time by different sectors of society might cause society to reevaluate the need or even the desire to even to engage in counterterrorism and counterinsurgency operations that ignore the complex dynamics of the people living in the affected environment every day.”

The truth is that President Bush and VP Cheney’s aggressive wars in the Middle East endangered far more LGBTQ service members and civilians than any Army whistle-blower.  Unlike PFC Manning, however, they have never served prison time, and likely never will.

Millions of people around the world support Bradley for the personal risk he took in sharing realities of complicated U.S. foreign conflicts with the American people.  He is the only gay U.S. serviceperson to be nominated three times for the Nobel Peace Prize.  In joining the Army, soldiers take an oath to protect the U.S. Constitution, and we believe that by his actions PFC Manning strengthened our democracy, and fulfilled that oath to a greater degree than most enlisted.

We are proud to embrace PFC Bradley Manning as one of our icons, and intend to march for him in pride contingents across the country this year, as we have in years past.  We think Bradley Manning sets a high standard for what a U.S. serviceperson, gay or straight, can be.

Lt. Dan Choi, 2009 SF Pride Celebrity Grand Marshal, anti-DADT activist
Joey Cain, 2008 SF Pride Community Grand Marshal, former Board Member and President of SF Pride
Gary Virginia, 2012 SF Pride Community Grand Marshal
John Caldera, Commander, Bob Basker Post 315ED, American Legion, SF Veterans For Peace
Peter Tatchell, Peter Tatchell Foundation
Glenn Greenwald, award-winning journalist
Leslie Feinberg, transgender author and activist
Minnie Bruce Pratt, award-winning poet, activist and educator
Dossie Easton, Therapist and Author
Susie Bright, public speaker, educator, writer
Andy Thayer, co-founder, Gay Liberation Network
Becca von Behren, Staff Attorney, Swords to Plowshares Veterans Service Organization
Stephen Eagle Funk, Artistic Director, Veteran Artists
Liz Henry, poet and activist
Lori Selke, author and activist
Rainey Reitman, Steering Committee, Bradley Manning Support Network
Sergei Kostin, Codepink Art Director
Kit Yan, Queer & Trans Asian American Poet
Lori Hurlebaus, Civilian-Soldier Alliance, SF Chapter; Co-founder, Courage to Resist
Evan Greer, radical queer riotfolk musician
Pat Humphries, Emma’s Revolution
Sandy Opatow, Emma’s Revolution
Pamela Means, award-winning OUT musician
Malachy Kilbride, Coordinating Committee, National Campaign for Nonviolent Resistance
Oliver Shykles, Queer Friends of Bradley Manning
Gabriel Conaway, equality activist, Steering Committee of SAME
Adele Carpenter, Civilian-Soldier Alliance, SF Chapter

The most bitter Bradley Manning-Pride piece yet


Lots of people angry about the Pride Committee’s decision to fire Bradley Manning as a grand marshal. But the most savage, all-out assault comes from Steven W. Thrasher, a former Village Voice writer who has nothing good to say at all about Pride or the people who run it — or for the more mainstream parts of the LGBT movement:

Listen up, fellow homos—you have been bought, paid-for and sold to the highest bidder. The military industrial complex is so far up the ass of the LGBT movement that it can feel what is being digested in its upper intestines. Talking points and “messaging,” not discussion and debate, are the preferred methods of “communication” in a movement now run and owned by PR-firm trained Professional Homosexuals. Dissent will not be tolerated, and the assimilation of homosexuals into the rest of the militarized American public is complete.

On Manning and Pride:

A regular homosexual can give Dan Savage handjob after handjob for his anti-bully “It Gets Better” campaign if he wants, and he can even scream from the rafters that Savage should be given the Nobel Peace Prize for saying that something must be done to protect the powerless who are bullied by the powerful. But that same homosexual becomes as beholden to the military-industrial complex as the Professional Homosexual when he fails to call out SF Pride as a bully. The powerful group found perhaps the most marginalized, powerless homosexual in the nation, pulled him into the spotlight for a few hours, took a giant shit on him, roughed him up a little, called him names, and then kicked him back into the gutter.

I had to smile when I came to the end of the post, which notes:

Steven W. Thrasher was named Journalist of the Year 2012 by the National Lesbian and Gay Journalists Association for his staff writing for the Village Voice and his freelance contributions to the New York Times and Out magazine. Two weeks after receiving this award, he was laid off by the Voice.

Is he being too harsh? Is he channeling his inner Marc Salomon? Or does the guy have a point here?



The Liberace movie trailer is here. Gay heads explode.


Matt Damon in a see-through Speedo and ’80s porns star hair. Michael Douglas creeping in a hot tub. Rob Lowe’s over-tanned needlenose. And fabulous, fabulous, fabulous fabulosity and scandal everywhere. “Behind the Candelabra,” airing May 26 on HBO, truly has it all.

The Performant: The sacred and the profane


Putting the “good” back into Good Friday at “Sing-Along Jesus Christ Superstar” and Zombie Christ Haunted House

They might seem merely irreverent, or downright blasphemous, to conservative churchgoers, but I’m pretty sure the original JC Superstar would have dug the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence — you know, the water-into-wine Jesus who supported sex workers and preached tolerance and respect for the marginalized.

The Sisters, who have been preaching the same since 1979, really get a chance to shine (and glitter) come Easter Weekend. One of SF’s most singular events, Easter Sunday in Dolores Park grabs the lion’s share of the attention, what with its iconic Easter Bonnet contest, the sainting of local community heroes, and the ever-popular Hunky Jesus competition, being rescheduled as we speak due to spring showers. But for those of us who find it difficult to get up early on a Sunday morning, hardbody of Christ or no hardbody of Christ, the Sisters have expanded their influence across the weekend, creating plenty of opportunity for the nocturnal among us to grab a little of the resurrection gusto for themselves.

Thus it was the holy day saddled with what must surely be the world’s greatest misnomer—“Good” Friday— that played host to two separate events dedicated to the mystery of the risen dead. The Zombie Christ, if you will.

Kicking off the evening at the endearingly ramshackle Victoria Theatre, the second (hopefully annual) “Sing-Along Jesus Christ Superstar” gathered the faithful together to wave palm fronds and cheer for the last days of cinema’s most notorious Rock Star Jesus (Ted Neeley).

Fortunately it’s not bring-your-own, since I don’t know where one goes to source official Easter weekend palm fronds, nor the communion wafers that get blessed pre-show by Sister Connie Pinko and passed around during the Last Supper scene. The Sisters work in mysterious ways. Props and palm fronds aside, the real fun is bellowing “What’s the buzz?” “So, you are the Christ,” and “just watch me die” along with the brooding, scantily-clad, long-haired Jesus freaks on the screen.

Produced by Bad Flower Productions, and co-hosted by StormMiguel Florez and Sister CP, that the Sing-Along is also a fundraiser for the Trans March makes it a Holy Week “must-do” that I hope finds a permanent spot on the Sisters’ Holy Week calendar.

Later that night I found myself hanging with a pack of monster messiahs, in the Gay-Glo labyrinth of the Zombie Christ Haunted House on Market Street. Another fun(d)-raiser the interactive setup included communion with the holy blood of Franzia (died for our sins), a disco inferno, “glory” holes, a giant pope puppet (scary!), strewn body parts, a smidgen of hardcore pornography, and a variety of cannibal Christs jumping out of dark corners and demanding brains.

“Not much there,” I tell one eager ghoul with fantastic bloody makeup.

“Christ not expecting much,” he reassures me.

More than anything it reminded me of the early days of Bunny Jam, when it was still all about pin-the-tail on the Trailer Trash bunny and less of a fashion show, ragged but vibrant; a fun, freaky kickstart to our famously irreverent Eastertide bacchanal.

Live Shots: LGBT Community Center celebrates 11 colorful years


Photos by Bowerbird Photography

Last Saturday, the disco ball sparkled from above, while below on the dance floor, party-goers glittered in gold. There was much to celebrate, with the SF LGBT Community Center‘s annual gala “Soiree” celebrating 11 years of sercing the community — and even more to drink, with bottomless bottles of champagne. There were also plenty of sights to drink in, including a few bottomless pairs of pants!

Of course, it was partying with a cause: tickets and auction items went to benefit the Center and their programs. With same-sex marriage equality rights in the balance this week at the U.S. Supreme Court, the Center made it clear that the LGBT community can always depend on them, regardless the outcome. District Supervisors David Campos and Scott Weiner also were in attendance and voiced their commitment to the Center.

Tita Aida worked the stage, introducing one great drag act after the other, including performances by Honey Mahogany, Ambrosia Salad, Miss Rahni, and Alotta Boutte. The theme was Studio 11, explaining why Salvador Dali watched haughtily from the VIP section, as boys in golden spanky pants made their rounds turning eyes. It was a night to remember, or at least a night to try to remember (after all that booze!). Congratulations to the LGBT Center for another year of amazing work and for throwing another wonderful gay-la.


Trouble down under: SF indie film banned in Australia


Cuddle porn, banned in Oz? The Australian Classification Board took exception with auteur Travis Mathews’ tender look at life and love among gay men in San Francisco — which included explicit sex scenes. Film fanatics at the Melbourne Queer Film Festival, Sydney’s Queer Screen, and the Brisbane Queer Film Festival will be missing out on Mathew’s work — I Want Your Love was scheduled to screen at all three this year.

Look, James Franco is sad too. “This seems really silly,” the actor says, wearing an absolutely interestingly patterned t-shirt and blonde head of hair in the video statement below. “I don’t think we’d be having this conversation if he’d made a very violent film.” Franco and Mathews recently collaborated on the film Interior. Leather Bar., inspired by the 40 minutes of S&M footage excised from the 1980 Al Pacino film Cruising:


Just as it did in 2010 with Bruce LaBruce’s gay bloodbath LA Zombie, the Classification Board deemed I Want Your Love‘s sexual content “gratuitous.” The term struck a chord with I Want Your Love‘s supporters, who may fail to see the connection between their film’s depictions of real-life gay sex and LaBruce’s necrophiliac plotline/erect zombie prosthetics.

“This is movie about gay life and relationships,” wrote the president of local gay porn company Naked Sword, Tim Valenti, in an editorial for Huffington Post that will be posted later today (we are sneaky/his press person sent us the op-ed text early-like.) Naked Sword produced I Want Your Love. “If we wanted to just sell sex, we could have made another porno,” Valenti writes. “But where’s the challenge in that?”

You can check out I Want Your Love on the Naked Sword website. Here’s Marke B.’s review of the flick from when it screened at the 2012 Frameline Fest

I Want Your Love (Travis Mathews, US, 2011) Local director Travis Mathews’ first full-length feature — produced by porn impresario Jack Shamama and the good, pervy folks at Naked Sword — is so beautifully shot, edited, paced, and true to life for a certain young, scruffy, artsy fag demographic (not to mention brimming with explicit sex scenes) that you probably won’t notice that hardly anything happens plotwise. A cute performance artist named Jesse, played by one of our top performance artists also named Jesse, is getting ready to move back to Ohio due to those all-too-familiar San Franciscan money woes, but maybe also to forge some deeper connection to life. That’s about it. The true joy here is seeing most of the Bay Area’s gay underground arts scene nailing peripheral roles: Brontez Purnell hilariously steals the movie, cute naked gay boys abound, and the whole thing really does come off as a lovely West Coast boho version of last year’s UK indie hit Weekend, with more fog and condoms.

Who’s hungry for a ‘Shrimp Dufty’? UPDATED


I’m not really sure what the connection is between “homeless czar” and former Castro district supe Bevan Dufty embracing pescetarianism on his 58th birthday and raising money for an LGBT-friendly homeless shelter, but Sliderbar is certainly making it.

Tonight, Tue/26, 6-10:30pm, the Castro burger joint is hosting a fundraiser celebrating Dufty’s birthday and creating a “shrimp sandwich” especially for him. (In case you’re not up on such things, every successful restaurant opening in the Castro lately has been burger-based — not sure if it’s something to do with mainstreaming of gay culture or what but it’s sizzling red meat everywhere — so a seafood option is certainly welcomed. No horsemeat, please! j/k, Sliderbar, j/k)

Accidental equestrivorianismy aside, this is a great cause — many queer homeless people have reported harassment at shelters due to their sexual orientation, and the creation of an LGBT-friendly shelter would be a relief — especially as, well, evictions are rising in the Castro (and everywhere else). Dolores Street Community Services is on it, and 50% of the proceeds from food and drink tonight go to the cause (plus $1 from every pescatarian slider throughout March).

UPDATE: The sandwich is actually called a Pickled Pink.

So grab a slidey piece of our Director of Housing Opportunities, Partnerships and Engagement tonight, it promises to be a bit of a scene. Shrimp sliders, ahoy! I am not going to tell you what shrimping means.