Jobriath - "I'm A Man"
In support of National Pride Month, for the entire month of June I will only post artists who Identify as somewhere on the LGBTQI Spectrum. We are loud, we are proud, and we deserve to be heard.
Bruce Wayne Campbell (December 14, 1946 – August 4, 1983), known by his stage name Jobriath, was an Americanrock musician and actor. He was the first openly gay rock musician to be signed to a major record label, and one of the first internationally famous musicians to die of AIDS.
Imagine watching the Empire State Building suddenly transform into giant spurting penis to ejaculate a figure dressed in a major King Kong look across a stage. Now, imagine this mysterious figure shedding the ape costume and emerging as the most fabulous Marlene Dietrich you’ve ever seen.
No, this isn’t the fever dream of a Hell’s Kitchen gay after watching Kong: Skull Island. This flamboyant and provocative series of events almost happened. The performance, set to take place at the Paris Opera House in 1973, would’ve introduced the world to glam rock’s first openly gay rock star. Through a sea of glitter, the crowd was to feel a potent mix of astonishment and arousal before whispering his name: Jobriath.
That you’re almost certainly wondering who the hell Jobriath is should betray the fact that his grand entrance never happened, but to dismiss Jobriath as yet another failed rock star would do a disservice to his legacy. The truth is, for all his failures, Jobriath paved a path for queer musicians. Without rock’s self-proclaimed “true fairy,” artists like ILoveMakonnen, Frank Ocean, PWR BTTM, Mykki Blanco and everyone in between might not be around to queer up the music industry.
Decades ago, in an era punctuated by the queerbaiting antics of Lou Reed and David Bowie, Jobriath’s star power proved to shine too bright, too fast—he was the Icarus of glam rock with a gloomy ending to match. Spanning multiple identities, enough tragedy to fill a Lifetime Original Movie, and a wealth of ideas that would never come to pass, this is the story of America’s first gay rock star.
Four decades after crooning for audiences to let him be who he was on the track “I’m a Man,” the repercussions of Jobriath’s fearless embrace of his sexuality, Empire State Building ejaculation and all, are finally being celebrated.
So today, with doors loose on their hinges, I choose Jobriath's "I'm A Man" as my, I am what I am, take me as I am, I am all that I desire, song for a, please see me, let me be me, hear my heart in rising sun, Tuesday.