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Queers Make Waves: Seattle’s 2014 ‘Mo-Wave Festival Offers Proof

Mo Wave on HuffPost Gay Voices

(Originally Published on The Huffington Post on 3/5/14)

The Pacific NW has no shortage of music festivals, and Seattle boasts some of the region’s largest and most well-attended. Starting a new festival in this neck of the woods is no small feat, but last year a handful of queers from the Emerald City did just that. The result was ‘Mo-Wave, Seattle’s queer music and arts festival — and it was a huge success.

Now in its second year, ‘Mo-Wave is back with another epic lineup featuring over 20 queer musicians (myself included) alongside dozens of visual and performance artists from all over the country, descending on stages at Chop Suey and PONY Seattle April 11-13.

Named “Best Festival” in its first year by Seattle Weekly, ‘Mo-Wave is unmatched in its eclectic blend of art and diverse queer culture. This mix immediately struck a chord with audiences, and one only has to take a quick glance at this year’s showcases to see that the ‘Mo-Wave crew are back at it. The festival’s mission to “showcase raw queer talent” through “a live and loud acknowledgment that our people do not fit into the simple stereotypes projected onto us by mainstream culture” is perhaps a tall order — but the team who pulled off year one has since grown, and they are about to top themselves. That’s right — I said “top themselves.” Chuckle all you want.

The 2014 lineup includes MX Justin V. Bond, Christeene, Zebra Katz, Carletta Sue Kay, Tacocat, Slava Mogutin, Logan Lynn, Ononos, Night Cadet, Boy Funk, Death Metals, Dust Moth, CZARL1NG (featuring Members of The Need/Grass Widow/Broken Water), Adé, Frederic Fleury, Narcissister, Jordan O’Jordan, L’Orth, Brian Kenny, LoneSome Leash, Tenderfoot, Half Breed, Sashay, Palo Verde, Spear and Magic Helmet, Frank Correa, Michael Horwitz, Your Heart Breaks, Belles Bent For Leather (Judas Priest Tribute), Queen Mookie, Amoania, Glitterbang, Hypnotits, Brian Brittigan, Zackary Drucker, MKNZ, Earl Dax, Crypts and more!

This week I caught up with ‘Mo-Wave creators Jodi Ecklund, Marcus Wilson and Seth Garrison to talk about Read the rest of this entry »

Logan Lynn’s “Tramp Stamps and Birthmarks” Video Premier Today on The Huffington Post

Tramp Stamps and Birthmarks Video (2013) Logan Lynn Music

Big thanks to The Huffington Post for premiering my new video “Tramp Stamps and Birthmarks” today! Watch the video and read the mini-interview I gave them HERE or by clicking the screenshot of the HuffPost Gay Voices homepage today just below!

Logan Lynn on The Huffington Post

From “The Huffington Post”: (10/31/2013)

“Logan Lynn is Back With a Spooky New Electropop Single”

Openly gay singer Logan Lynn is back with the fourth and final single from his new album “Tramp Stamps And Birthmarks.”

The electropopper’s latest single, the title track off the album, precedes a planned 12-month in-studio stint in which he will already begin work on his next album.

“The song is about power, control, and the people ‘in charge’ who call the shots and oppress us throughout our lives,” said Lynn in a statement, “whether that’s in relationships, or just in general by way of our rank and positioning in the world. I have been caged and shackled to my experiences in the world over the years, and I am in an ongoing process to free myself. We set out to make a scary, psycho-sexual nightmare about that experience. On the surface, it’s about a man who drugs and kidnaps me, ties me up in an RV that is completely lined with black trash bags, drives me into the middle of the woods and puts me in a cage. You know… Happy Halloween!”

Unsimulated Sex: An Interview With James Franco and Travis Matthews

James Franco Travis Matthews Huffington Post Logan Lynn (2013) Interior Leather Bar

(Originally Published on The Huffington Post on 5/16/2013)

This Friday night James Franco and Travis Matthews‘ stunning, complicated and sexually graphic new film Interior. Leather Bar., a “docu-fiction” exploration of queer sex and BDSM subculture as it relates to Hollywood, mainstream culture and where we all draw the line as people, is making its Pacific Northwest debut at QDoc: Portland Queer Documentary Film Festival.

I had the opportunity to catch up with both Franco and Matthews this week to chat about the public’s reaction to the movie (so far), their intentions behind making it to begin with, how gay sex will save American cinema, and much more.

Watch the official Interior. Leather Bar. trailer and then read our conversation below:

 

 

Logan Lynn: Thanks for taking time out to do this, you guys! I watched the screener of Interior. Leather Bar. this week and ended up recognizing a handful of the actors you cast from Portland. One major focus of the film is the inner struggle of Val Lauren, whom you cast to play the Al Pacino character, and I am just wondering if this is something you experienced with all of the cast. Was there a process you went through with each of the actors and extras?

Travis Matthews: If you mean a process that went as far and as deep and exploratory as it did with Val, no. Initially when we did the casting call, and there were so many guys who were both gay and straight, and a lot of them had different ideas of what they were willing to do, what was OK, what was too much. I kind of thought that we should just bring on extras that were really 100-percent behind this, but then it seemed like it made a lot more sense just to complement the arc that was Val’s story. You look at Cruising; it’s a story that follows that main character in a very similar way. That was a lot of the intent.

Lynn: That makes sense. I’m seeing the term “docu-fiction” used all over the place to describe the movie. In the context of this film, what does that mean to you?

James Franco: I think that describes a lot of different dynamics that are happening within the film. Our source was a piece of fiction, a movie called Cruising, but that fictional feature film had a lot of documentary kind of history attached to it in a very strong way. If anybody knows that film nowadays, it’s very hard to extract the film from its history, the history of its production and the protests that went on, the history of its reception and the personal histories of the people involved. So, from the start, our project was engaged with a source that was already combining docu-fiction in a very strong way. I think that the way that Cruising and its history are tied together informed our approach, and a lot of it really was discovery and exploration as we went. We didn’t have any firm goal in mind. I think that, for me, one of the clearest things about the project at the beginning was that we had an area to explore, but that it would be an exploration. That was a huge part of it. Anyway, I guess that’s a long way of saying our source involved docu-fiction and our approach accordingly involved docu-fiction.

Lynn: Do you have any theories on what William Friedkin’s motivations were in making the original Cruising film? Have you heard him speak to that?

Franco: Yeah, I have heard him speak about it, and he Read the rest of this entry »

Logan Lynn Interviews Cult Cinema Icon Mink Stole This Week For The Huffington Post!

Logan Lynn Interviews Mink Stole

(Originally Published On The Huffington Post On 4/24/2013)

Accidental Trailblazer: An Interview With Cult Cinema Icon Mink Stole
Each spring, Portland, Ore., plays host to QDoc: Queer Documentary Film Festival, the only festival in the U.S. devoted exclusively to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) documentaries, and one of only two festivals of its kind in the entire world!

Now in its seventh year, QDoc 2013 begins May 16. The opening-night film is I Am Divine, filmmaker Jeffrey Schwarz’s new feature-length documentary about the life and times of John Waters protégé and drag pioneer Divine, aka Glenn Milstead.

Last week I had the chance to view a screening of the film and catch up with one of its stars, queer cult cinema icon, actress/singer and original John Waters muse Mink Stole.

 

2013-04-21-OfficialIAmDivinePosterbyGrantNellessen.jpg
Logan Lynn: Thanks so much for chatting with me this morning, Mink. I am a huge fan of your work. I just watched the I Am Divine screener.

Mink Stole: I haven’t seen it yet.

Lynn: What?!

Stole: I have not seen it yet.

Lynn: Oh, wow. That’s surprising. I feel so lucky!

Stole: I’m gonna see it in Boston in a couple of weeks, and then again in Portland.

Lynn: Well, I felt very moved by the film. There was a “dreams really do come true” theme running throughout the film with regard to Divine‘s life. In making the film, how was it to be looking back at that period, and in particular your friendship with him?

Stole: It was nice, actually, because Jeffrey came here to Baltimore, and we spent a really fun couple of hours together. His take on Divine was so friendly, and so loving. I didn’t feel challenged at all to have to defend my friendship — and it was a real friendship. I wouldn’t say that Divine and I were best friends. You know, he had a whole life with his music career that I was not even remotely part of. I mean, I saw him perform and thought he was amazing, but I wasn’t part of that life. I’ll tell you the truth: We had lost touch between Polyester and Hairspray. He was off in Europe doing all this music stuff, but when John proposed Hairspray to us, Divine and I got back together. He had moved into an apartment right around the corner from me in New York, and we started spending time together again. It was really wonderful to reconnect with him. He was happy. He was doing really well. You know, he had money for practically the first time in his life, and it was wonderful to see him. Divine always did better when Read the rest of this entry »

Watch: Father Tiger’s Instagram Masterpiece (VIDEO)

(Originally Published on The Huffington Post on 8/20/2012)

I was recently introduced to Los Angeles-based electropop outfit Father Tiger by my friend/collaborator Jeffrey McHale, who directed both my “Bottom Your Way to the Top” video in 2009 and my “Quickly as We Pass” video in 2011, and who has now directed Father Tiger’s debut video, “Shell,” which just premiered this past week.

The video was made entirely with the photo app Instagram, and it is a real piece of genius. Jeff worked with artist John Parot (from Bravo’s Work of Art: The Search for the Next Great Artist), who also did the illustrations for our 2009 collaboration.

Watch Father Tiger‘s video for “Shell” below and be amazed:

Read the rest of this entry »

Logan Lynn Interviewed by Huffington Post Gay Voices This Week!

(Originally Published on The Huffington Post, 8/7/2012)

Logan Lynn Discusses His Return To Music, His New Single ‘Turn Me Out’ And More
By: Noah Michelson, HuffPost Gay Voices Editor

Gay singer-songwriter Logan Lynn began professionally making music nearly 15 years ago. Since then he has released a slew of albums, has seen his videos featured on LOGO and MTV, and performed around the world.

In 2010 Lynn announced that he would be taking an extended break from the music industry to work full time for LGBTQ equal rights at Portland’s Q Center. He even released an album, “I Killed Tomorrow Yesterday,” with Producer Bryan Cecil and gave the proceeds to Portland’s Q Center, the only LGBT community center in the Pacific Northwest.

Now he’s back with a new single, “Turn Me Out”, and an upcoming album. We caught up with Lynn to find out what he’s been up to since he left the music industry, why he’s coming back, what to expect from the new album and more.

The Huffington Post: You’re just coming off a two-year hiatus from the music industry. Why did you take the break and what have you been up to?

Logan Lynn: In 2010, after five straight years of nonstop working and touring, I just needed some time to step back and not feel so consumed by the industry. At the time I was really lonely and tired and felt overexposed in ways that I wasn’t really able to deal with, so I canceled the second leg of my tour, severed ties with The Dandy Warhols and my label, fired my publicist, fired my manager, freaked out publicly in the press and gave the record I had been working on for over a year away as a fundraiser for Q Center, Portland’s queer community center. I pissed a lot of people off during the process of breaking free and in retrospect I would probably be a little less public about the whole thing… but back then it felt like the only way to take some time off and get rid of the toxic people I had surrounding me was to completely blow everything up, so that’s what I did. Once the career suicide dust settled I started giving all of my time to the queer community and have been helping to build the infrastructure of Q Center ever since. I needed real people in my life again and that’s ultimately what I found in my work with the community. Working with people in need really puts your own need in perspective.

You’ ve landed in a bit of hot water and controversy around some of the activism work you have been doing. What exactly went down between Portland’s queer community and the Mars Hill evangelical church?

At the end of 2011 the Mars Hill church bought a building in Portland and announced they were opening their doors in our community. Its founder has publicly equated homosexuality to cancer on society, amongst other very charming hate speech about the gay community. Part of my mission as an activist and an out queer man is to encourage a dialogue with those who oppose us or would do us harm, so I reached out to their pastor and we began meeting together. From there, we decided to assemble nine people from Portland’s LGBT community and nine members of the traditional Evangelical community and we have been meeting once a month with a conflict resolution expert ever since. Read the rest of this entry »

Logan Lynn: A Century of Love

(Originally Published on The Huffington Post on 7/13/2012)

My grandfather is turning 100 years old next month, which completely blows my mind. I’m flying to South Dakota with my partner to do strange Americana activities at Mt. Rushmore and then celebrate his century of life with everyone on my mother’s side of the family. It’s going to be a very special time, and I am really looking forward to it. I wish my aunt could be there with us, but this year has brought with it big heartaches, as well, and she is no longer here. It’s devastating to think about my grandpa having to endure losing his daughter so late in his life, but he is a very wise old man, and he has handled her passing better than any of the rest of us.

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I suppose that sort of deep understanding about death is to be expected of a person who has lived 100 years. He has already said goodbye to his grandparents, his parents, his cousins, his siblings, all his friends, and his wife. He is at peace with having loved and lost, and he seems to be fine with his own mortality. Clearly, this man knows something about life that I have yet to learn.
Read the rest of this entry »

Logan Lynn – Queer Celebrities Need Love, Too (Part 3: Pride Edition): An Interview With Fred Schneider, Chris March, Katastrophe, Hunx and His Punx, Kaia Wilson, Girl in a Coma, Christeene, Slava Mogutin, and Scott Matthews

(Originally Published on The Huffington Post on 6/15/2012)

Happy Pride Month, everybody! I am preparing to be neck-deep in an array of Portland’s gape ride festivities this coming weekend, then I’m flying east to New York City with my man to promote my new single, relax, and do Pride all over again. There is much to celebrate this year! For me, this time is about honoring our love, valuing who we are as people, and remembering the brave LGBT folks who have paved the way for us.

For this (third) round of “Queer Celebrities Need Love, Too” I chatted with pop legend Fred Schneider (The B-52s, The Superions), Bravo’s Chris March (Project Runway, Mad Fashion), transgender rapper Katastrophe, electrorock lovechild Seth Bogart (Gravy Train!!!!, Hunx and His Punx), queercore pioneer turned folk powerhouse Kaia Wilson (Team Dresch, The Butchies), Joan Jett‘s indie rock prodigies Girl in a Coma, self-proclaimed drag terrorist Christeene, artist/author Slava Mogutin, and English singer/songwriter Scott Matthews. They all answered the same five questions about what queer pride means to them:

1. If you could sum up in one word what it means for you to have queer pride, what would it be?

2. How will you celebrate pride this year?

3. Would you ever be in a relationship with someone who was still in the closet and planned on remaining that way?

4. In thinking about your own experience with relationships and just what exactly we are celebrating this Pride Month, please tell us about the first time in your life when you felt proud of who you are and of your queer love.

5. If that personal pride experience were adapted into a film, what song would be the soundtrack to that scene?

* * * * *
Read the rest of this entry »

Logan Lynn: Bullied to Death in America

(Originally Published on The Huffington Post on 4/18/2012)

I went to see filmmaker Lee Hirsch‘s new documentary, Bully, this past weekend, and even now, days later, I still find myself deeply affected. When I say that, I’m speaking not so much about the film (although it was beautifully made and completely moving) but to the extreme heartache I have felt since watching it. I started sobbing about 30 seconds into the movie and didn’t really stop until the following morning. I cried for the parents who have lost their children to bullying, I cried for the bullied subjects in the film, and I cried for myself, having gone through an amplified version of all of this years ago.

Yesterday, after reading reports of yet another 14-year-old queer kid being bullied to death in America, this time in Iowa, the feeling turned once again from sadness to anger. My own growing-up-gay-in-the-Midwest story reads like some sort of fucked-up textbook for how LGBT kids come into the world, how we maneuver through, and often how we go out. The torture I suffered at the hands of my peers as a closeted child and then as an out teenager is one that is shared by many in the community. In reality I was quite lucky to have survived back then, although I almost didn’t survive the years that followed.

I took in violence as a young man like a sponge takes up water. It came in many forms, but I always did the same thing with it: I absorbed it and made it part of me, every mean thing anyone ever called me believed, every punch thrown my way shaped into my being. I spent years reacting to other people’s hate in a variety of colorful ways, living out the disappointment of everyone who had ever known me in real time. I was driven by uncontrollable rage, crippling fear, and a sense of mourning for the person everyone else thought I should be but whom I knew I would never become. Over time I grew used to the abuse, said goodbye to my sweetness, and let the violence take me over.

Even as an adult I am still dealing with this very old idea about myself and a world that says that I am nothing; that I somehow deserve to taste blood in my mouth, because I am not actually a person; that I need to hide in order to stay alive. To this day, when I encounter homophobia, my first reaction is often to fight; sometimes the motivation is to protect myself or the man I love, but sometimes it’s because I just want to see that look of surprise on the face of some mouthy jock who didn’t expect this particular weak, pussy-faggot to be scrappy and fight back. I’ve spent countless hours in therapy working on this very thing, but having spent my formative years defending myself both physically and emotionally, it’s sometimes hard to turn that survival reflex off.

Just this past weekend, as we walked by a group of meathead bro-dudes with tribal tattoos and spray tans, one of them mocked what I had said to my boyfriend as we passed, only he did it in full-blown sissy voice. I stopped. My initial instinct was to Read the rest of this entry »

Logan Lynn: Queer Celebrities Need Love, Too (Part 2) – An Interview with Will Schwartz, Patty Schemel, Philip Tetro, Ian Harvie, Christopher G. Ciccone, PJ DeBoy, Daniel Nardicio, and Mario Diaz

(Originally Published on The Huffington Post on 3/30/2012)

I’m going to Los Angeles this weekend to meet my man’s parents for the first time. I’m really excited to get to know the people who created this extraordinary creature I love so much, and it feels super special to have been invited to accompany him on the journey. So romantical!

At any rate, I figured that because I’m spun out all giddy-like on matters of the heart at the moment, it would be the perfect time for the second round of my ongoing interview series about love and relationships, “Queer Celebrities Need Love, Too.” For this edition I reached out to Imperial Teen‘s Will Schwartz, original Hole drummer Patty Schemel, TV personality Philip Tetro (from MTV Canada’s 1 Girl 5 Gays), transgender comedian Ian Harvie, New York Times bestselling author (and Madonna‘s brother) Christopher G. Ciccone, actor PJ DeBoy, radio talkshow host (and former Playgirl president) Daniel Nardicio, and Sexpop god Mario Diaz. They all weighed in on the same five questions:

1. If you had to sum up the entire history of your love life in one word, what would it be?

2. What’s your favorite on-screen romance of all time? What was it about their love that you liked?

3. Name something that’s a deal breaker for you in relationships.

4. What does a perfect day look like to you? Is it spent alone or with someone else?

5. If you could pick a theme song for that day, what would it be?

Here’s what they had to say about stuff (and things). Read the rest of this entry »





 

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