I have been thinking about the beginning of our career and what it felt like to talk about being gay when we first started doing interviews with the press in 1999. I remember questions about our sexuality always starting with;
At some point I sensed a change. We had figured out a way to share the complex and inspiring experience of being gay without it feeling reductive or isolating. Our success as musicians changed the spin of the story. There was relief during the press cycle for “The Con” when writers suddenly wanted to talk about our songwriting, the process of recording, and the dynamics and depths of our collaborative relationship. Of course our being gay (and the audience who embraced that) was still of interest but it did feel that we had entered a new era of our career. It was fun to talk to the press! Even enjoyable!
I’m grateful that there has been so much progress made internationally in the fight for LGBTQequality and being in this band has allowed us to experience that change personally all over the world. Our fan base is one of the most kind and understanding and their acceptance has allowed for a deeper love of ourselves. The correspondence we receive from them each night is often heart-wrenching and brave. I wake up daily to op-ed pieces and blogs written by impassioned and influential women (both straight and gay) that make me feel less alone. There is a vibrant community of queer friends and artists who share the experience of being proudly out and accepted widely but not negatively impacted or marginalized commercially.
Today, when a journalist from any country starts a questions with;
“I’m sorry to ask you this…”
“I know you don’t like to talk about it, but…”
“I don’t think its important to your music that you’re gay but I was wondering…”