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Track by track of the smash hit album 1998 with Greg Gould

His new album has topped the charts in Australia and Europe and since his stint on Australia's Got Talent, Greg Gould has cemented his place within the Australian music scene, producing unique and thoughtful projects that have been at the forefront of LGBT equality, bullying and other issues that we deal with every day, his sultry vocals and kick-ass production has allowed a lot of other LGBT artists locally make the record labels wake up and pay attention to the massive talent base we have in our community for music and entertainment.

1998 is a 17 track behemoth that is all duets. He has collaborated with some of Australia's finest singers and identities and has delivered a unique and compelling album that is timeless, whilst delivering classic 'retro' (ARGH - how can they be retro lol)  tracks to a totally new generation whilst still paying homage to the originals.

It is a well thought out project and one that tugs at the heartstrings. Its power to envoke memories whilst delivering a new take with a fresh vibe is just genius. Rob caught up with Greg during the COVID-19 lockdown to work on this feature, so we could showcase to you, the listener, what went into the production of the album, and the personal relationships that made this such an amazing hit - track by track.

Sit back, relax, grab and Stoli Ruski or a Bacardi Breezer and enjoy 1998 - a track by track with Greg Gould.

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TRACK ONE - LOVE LIKE THIS

Duet with Inaya Day (Originally by Faith Evans)

This one is an extra special story...
I have always been a huge fan of Inaya, i have fond memories of dancing to her hit with Mr Timothy at my very first Mardi Gras. We already had followed each other on Instagram and had chatted a handful of times prior to me reaching out to her with the idea to collaborate on my new 90s duets album. I pitched the classic Faith Evans song ‘Love Like This’. She said “Oh I see someone has done their research” turns out Inaya’s beautiful late brother Schon Crawford had co-written the song with Faith! What are the odds!! It was really beautiful to be able to dedicate the song to her brother and honour the song in such a beautiful way. In terms of arrangement Michael Tan, the album's producer, and I came up with that funky bass line first, and the rest kind of wrote itself. The original hook is pretty recognisable and as with the rest of this album we wanted to make the versions unique and different and its probably my favourite arrangement on the album. Most people that only really know the track from the hook and the chorus don’t recognise it till it comes in with the chorus which is so cool. I also really love the A Capella intro and outro it's the perfect way to begin the album.

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TRACK TWO - MY LOVE IS YOUR LOVE

Duet with Prinnie Stevens & Komiti Levai (Originally by Whitney Houston)

I have always loved this song and WHITNEY is my music GOD. This really is a heartfelt tribute to a voice and an artist that really means a lot to me and to have Prinnie on there with me who starred in The Bodyguard here in Australia just made it that much more special. Prinnie is such a soulful heartfelt vocalist and a dear friend. We had done several corporate gigs together in the past meeting at a Carol's back in 2014 and have been mates ever since. It was so special to have her come in the studio with her newborn bubba and daughter and it just had an energy to it of love which is what this song is all about. Having Komiti join us was a blessing and the icing on the cake we needed to complete this track and I love the gospel arrangement and the harmonies. It’s a standout and I’m really proud of it.

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TRACK THREE - CRUSH

Duet with Zoe Badwi (Originally by Jennifer Paige)

Crush was the first song I ever demoed for the album and most of my original demo vocal is what you hear on the track. It was a 6 min version when we first demoed it and it wasn’t till adding Zoes gorgeous vocals that it made it clear how the song should be structured. I love Zoe, she’s one of my favourite performers to watch LIVE. I met her a handful of times and we were friends on Facebook but didn’t really know each other. She was such a pleasure to get to know and work with - very collaborative and just a total joy of a human being. The track turned out great - the intro reminded me of the piano into on Brian McKnight’s ‘Back At One’ and it's really gospel soulful version. Both Zoe and I did the BVs so there are hundreds of little Zoe and Greg vocal stacks there haha. Again, super proud of it and its been really well received.

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TRACK FOUR - THE BOY IS MINE

Duet with Peyton (Originally by Brandy & Monica)

The obvious first single for me once completed. It’s probably the most commercial ballad on the album and I just love how gorgeous the piano and the arrangement and the vocals are. Peyton and I met in 2017 when we performed Freedom at the Mardi Gras Party at the RHI for the George Michael Tribute. I loved his voice and working with him and we have built such a gorgeous friendship. The music video is what really took this song to another level, flipping the narrative on its head from two women fighting over a man to a mother sending a message to bully’s to say you can't have him, you can't hurt him. It’s stunning and my favourite video I’ve done to date and to have gorgeous Lynne McGranger in the video is something I will pinch myself about for years to come. Peyton is a real storyteller with his stunning voice and I look forward to making more music with him int he future. The boy is mine, the boy is yours, this boy could be any of us...

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TRACK FIVE - HOW DO I LIVE

Duet with Melanie Lewin (Originally by LeAnne Rimes)

This one probably means the most to me...
Given that Melanie and have been best friends for a long time, this track celebrates more than music - but a 20-year friendship, we have been singing together that long - and I think that really shows in the track. We have both loved this song growing up and it was Mel’s parent's favourite song she used to sing so along with being a well-loved hit from the 90’s it carries a lot of memories and nostalgia for both of us, me and my mum used to sing this together on the way to her dropping me to school. I really couldn’t live without my gorgeous friendship with Mel - she’s been my absolute rock through the tough times and we have been each other’s funny bone - we always laugh so much when we are together and we just really love singing together. It’s an honest arrangement stripped right back and because Mel and I know each other’s voice so well the blend and the vocal journeys are so together. It’s actually to date the highest streamed song on the album and I’m not surprised. It’s really special to both of us and I hope it can be just as special to those people who listen to it.

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TRACK SIX - UNINVITED

Duet with Damien Leith (Originally by Alanis Morrisette)

Damien is such a gorgeous vocalist - his falsetto is stunning and its well showcased in our special version of this epic song from the City of Angels soundtrack. We met when I supported him on one of his tours and he is such a lovely guy and a real talent! This was a hard one to get right (and I believe we did) it was Damien's idea to do the octave when we sang together which made it feel more current and I added the harmonies to make it different from the other acoustic versions out there. Doing my entire verse A Capella was something that came to me when I stepped into the booth, I told my producer to just give me a crack without piano til the second verse where Damien comes in. I wanted it to be honest and for the melody of the lyrics to be sparse and vulnerable. I absolutely love the hauntingly beautiful piano solo Michael Tan has done here. Again, very proud of this track.

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TRACK SEVEN - BABY ONE MORE TIME

Duet with Katie Underwood (Originally by Britney Spears)

This one was a lot of fun! Katie Underwood’s voice is so suited to jazz and it was her jazz album Ain’t Nobody’s Baby that led me to choose this track and style of this iconic Britney song. Katie and I met in Melbourne at the very first same-sex wedding - Ron & Antony and what a wedding it was! We perform “What The World Needs Now” together with Maria Mercedes (also on this album) and we had an instant connection. Musically I love our voices together and I loved playing with the harmonies - Katie really led this song as she recorded her vocals first. Michael Tubman’s trumpet solo is HEAVEN and he did a great job arranging all the horns on this album. The music video is fun and I love this Burlesque vibe for this track!

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TRACK EIGHT - FROZEN

Duet with Maria Mercedes & Jacqui Dark (Originally by Madonna)

3 worlds combined! If there was ever a Madonna musical - this should be in it! Hahaha
Australian Broadway royalty Maria Mercedes and opera star Jacqui Dark both were incredible to work with on what I think is one of Madonna’s greatest songs. Such an important message in this song and we really dug deep to find the truth in the lyrics and tell the story within the song. “You’re frozen, when your hearts not open” what an important message in today's world. Maria and I as mentioned above met at the “wedding of the century” and we have become the most incredible friends. She has been my mentor in many ways and a true friend. Jacqui and I met on the set of All Together Now and was so funny and lovely and has so much heart in her gorgeous voice. I love that in the 2nd verse the tempo and the vibe change and the instrumental when Jacqui soars is like Mother Earth crying. It’s stunning!

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TRACK NINE - MY ALL (MI TODO)

Duet with Emily Williams (Originally by Mariah Carey)

Idol, Young Divas, The Bodyguard - I have been on team Emily since I met her at the Australian Idol Season 3 auditions. I made it to the Final 40 and Em of course went on to the Grand Finale. What a voice! So much power and emotion. I have loved this song so much since I first watched Mariah perform it on VHS Divas Live (that gold dress!!) The arrangement is fairly simple as the melodies in the is song are so beautiful that I really didn’t want to change it too much - you can't mess with perfection right?! Haha, I love our voices belting together at the end. So powerful, I remember when I first heard Ems vocal I balled my eyes out. Adding the Spanish was a last-minute decision I had actually recorded the entire song in English first but I’m so glad I did it - I love singing in other languages and it adds something special to the track. This really is my thank you to Mariah for inspiring me vocally and being so fabulous!

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TRACK TEN - I WANT TO SPEND MY LIFETIME LOVING YOU

Duet with Cosima De Vito (Originally by Tina Arena / Marc Anthony)

Don’t Ask was the first album I ever bought and was the soundtrack to my childhood. Tina Arena is such a huge inspiration to me so to record one of her many incredible songs is a dream come true - and who else could have sung this than the ONE + ONLY Cosima De Vito. What a freaking voice! Literally her vocal is ONE TAKE - she smashed it out of the park first go and that is what you hear on the record. Our voices together are really really special and I remember being really meticulous about having every not finish together, ever crescendo perfectly together and every breath takes the same time. It’s gotta be one of if my favourite tracks on the album and I’m so proud to call Cosima a friend now - she’s a darling human with so many gifts. I look forward to releasing this properly when we are allowed to tour and we are in the midst of planning the music video for it now! There will be DANCING! Hehe

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TRACK ELEVEN - CAN’T GET ENOUGH OF YOU BABY

Duet with Rhonda Burchmore (Originally by Smash Mouth)

What an honour to do a duet with the incredible Rhonda Burchmore! Such a pro, such an icon, and such a lovely human. So talented, so wonderful and so SEXY! Her vocals were so good - there was so much to choose from when we were putting it all together. I arranged this song with Rhonda in mind - jazzy, sassy, and fabulous! So much history and heart in that voice and again - I love hearing us blend together! Double bass, grand piano, and horns with a gorgeous sax solo - YES PLEASE! Rhonda and I met at Broadbeach Jazz Festival initially and were both judges on All Together Now - and I have to admit I was a bit star-struck - shes got such a dazzling energy to her and I’m so honoured to be her friend.

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TRACK TWELVE - BITTERSWEET SYMPHONY

Duet with Tania Doko & Eric Bazilian

Both LEGENDS! Tania and I have been mates for some time (absolutely love her) - we met a few years back online and I came to one of her gigs while she was here in Sydney and we actually had recorded another track together before this one - and this one just worked so beautifully. Raw, vulnerable. I took all of the tuning, reverb, and the delay off of my verse to start it - I wanted it to be really honest. Tania’s voice - I CAN'T EVEN - she has so much emotion it speaks to my inner soul. Eric really is an actual living legend - he wrote One Of Us for Joan Osbourne and played guitar on Cyndi Lauper’s Time After Time & Girls Just Wanna Have Fun (cmon!?!) and I love his voice also - so much heart and grit! This song is my favourite arrangement on the album and means a lot to me as I was recording it when my step mum passed away from lung cancer. I dedicate it to her as she got to hear my solo raw demo just before she passed - she would be so proud of the finished product.

track13 

TRACK THIRTEEN - BUSES & TRAINS

Duet with Lynne McGranger (Originally by Bachelor Girl)

Who’ da thought Lynne had such a lovely singing voice!!! Irene and I met at the Perth Telethon 2 years ago at the bar - we were both comparing the wines of all things hahah! - not a bad conversation starter! Initially, I asked her to be in The Boy Is Mine music video (which she deserves an Oscar for) but when she told me she said she had been in Legally Blonde The Musical - a wine or two were had and I was pleasantly surprised by how she sang and how much she loved it! It was a really special recording experience as I was kind of her vocal coach through it- not that she needed it - LEGEND! I love Lynne and I’m very grateful for her friendship. To have James Roche (who wrote Buses & Trains) and Jack Jones (Southern Sons) play on the track is a complete honour and I love the first verse and the harmonies - having Tania on the previous track also who originally sung the song is really special. Having Lynne tell this story from a different perspective someone who has lived and had children of their own is a really interesting take on this classic Bachelor Girl tune!

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TRACK FOURTEEN - MY HEART WILL GO ON

Duet with Amanda Harrison (Originally by Celine Dion)

Who doesn’t love TITANIC and its epic soundtrack! “Jack, Jack - I’m flying!”
Amanda Harrison’s vocals here are so stunning to come out of me singing my verse so soft and singing it mostly in falsetto to her so effortlessly building it further to the 3 part harmony finale at the end. I wasn’t sure whether to take on this song - but I’m so glad we did and can’t imagine anyone else singing it with me that - well, ELPHABA lol. Amanda is a great human, incredible performer, and singer. I was lucky enough to witness her as the Greenest Witch in town and I, like everyone else who saw it - was completely blown away. The arrangement is similar to the movie instrumental “Rose’s theme” without the Pan flute and I think it makes it a little more of a conversation version of the song. There will be no water used in the music video haha!

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TRACK FIFTEEN - TOGETHER AGAIN

Duet with Joanne (Originally by Janet Jackson)

Joanne was my rock on this album. We have been close friends for a few years now meeting through mutual friends and falling in love instantly. What a voice! What a performer! What a human. So much heart in this track because we genuinely love and respect each other’s talents and our relationship. Joanne is such a pro and a joy to work with - this album would not be what it is without her! From the many hours on the phone talking about concepts, song ideas, who should sing what - Joanne was there from Day 1. Jo chose this song for us as shes a huge Janet fan and we worked really hard on this track - both going in several times to record more background vocals, and to make it the fun, soulful and the heartfelt track it is. I was lucky enough to perform it with her at the initial single launch for Mardi Gras 2020 and it was such a dream come true. It’s Joanne’s first release in 19 years and I’m so honoured to share this track and friendship with her.

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TRACK SIXTEEN - YOU GET WHAT YOU GIVE

Duet with Mark Gable (Originally by New Radicals)

Mark is a legend! Who hasn’t belted out Run To Paradise at the top of their lungs before!? I certainly have. I had the great pleasure of sitting next to Mark on the panel of All Together Now and he was hilarious and charming and we had the best time. I absolutely adore our track together. This ballad version showcases the tracks incredible lyrics and hearing Mark so beautiful and vulnerable - it is really special. This was one of the first songs I recorded for the album and it was going to be the last track and done as a solo but alas I recorded Closing Time - so I called up Mark and said hey come on a journey with me - he was great to work with and its a great track.

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TRACK SEVENTEEN - CLOSING TIME

Duet with Mary Kiani, Danni Da Ros and Jordan Raskopolous (Originally by Semisonic)

The icing on the cake - the performing end to my album. It’s my Seasons Of Love final group number. 4 unique voices coming together to take it home. Danni and I have been friends for about 10 years - a great singer and very caring human - I've sung with her many times and its always a thrill - she sings her face off on this track - that last belt!? Phwoar!! Mary and I met at Fairday many years back and she was just fabulous - I love her conversations and she just loves music - she brought so much hear to this track. It’s a ballad version of a rock song so it needed heart. Jordan and I met at a gig and got chatting in the green room - the girl can sing rock like no one's business but it's so so lovely to hear her sing with such vulnerability and poise - we worked really hard on this track and it was, in fact, the last song we recorded. I remember when I’d finished the last session in the studio I didn’t want to leave - it felt like the end of an era - 2 years of collaboration and 1998 was born...

 

1998 really is a mash-up of incredible talent, all expertly steered by Greg to get the best performances out of some incredible talent and deliver a world-class album that reflects not only the era it is covering but a community that can come together and creates art and moments that we can all enjoy.

Do yourself a favour and go and grab the album on iTunes, or stream it on Spotify.  You can also follow Greg on Guidetogay to check out his videos and get up to date news and project information.

Check out the photo gallery from the 1998 album launch at Sydney's Universal.

 

 

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Cirque du Soleil flips the script on an amazing new production - Kurios.

My aunt took me to the first Cirque De Soleil in Battery Park, New York City when I was 12 years old. I have been a massive fan of this production company ever since and try to see every show they produce. KURIOS certainly did not disappoint!

 

My fiance's Cirque De Soleil cherry was popped in Brisbane with KURIOS and he enjoyed every moment of it as well.

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We were transported to a period where fashion, art, science, music, and humanity are celebrated. From the moment the show started our imagination, wonder, adrenaline and curiosity peaked. And, to be honest, we were both sexually aroused by the gorgeous and fit men in the show...don't worry ladies, there are gorgeous women as well!

 

Every detail is meticulously planned to the finest detail, from the music, costumes, audience interactions, level of excitement and adrenaline rushes for both the performer and the audience.  You will be filled with adrenaline, excitement, wonder, and joy throughout the show.

 

manwoman kudosThere were times the audience didn't know if they should clap or hold their breath. The performers are masters of their art and they are defying death as they perform their art for your entertainment. 

 

Each Cirque De Soleil has its own original musical score. A live band and various singers are narrating the performance.

 

And, let's not forget about the outfits! They bring every character to life in full HD. I truly believed I was witnessing sea creatures performing in the water, beings from other worlds exploring their habitats, and pure magic! It was exhilarating! A pure feast for the senses!

 

I am about to turn 43. I am forever grateful to my Aunt for taking me to my first Cirque De Soleil almost 31 years ago. This show is for all ages. I highly recommend it for a night out with the family or as part of a "date night". It will heighten your imagination, pump your adrenaline, and warm your heart.

 

Cirque du Soleil is for the young, the dreamer, the lover and finally, THE KURIOS!

 

gtg goldstars

5/5 Stars 

 

For national tour dates throughout Australia, visit our what's on guide.

 

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Your global Gay guide to NYE 2019/2020

We give you the ultimate list of what's on in queer parties around the globe for New Years Eve to send out the decade in style!

 

Gay NYE Sydney Hero Image celebration nye1718 1183 Large Logo 1900x1169px

Sydney Australia:
Celebration NYE.
This rooftop party sits above the iconic Museum of Contemporary Art in Sydney's Circular Quay and is right in the heart of the massive fireworks display with views of both the opera house and the harbour bridge.
A see of white and silver, join Sydney's gay glitterati as they count down the New Years in the most fabulous spot available for this iconic world-famous NYE celebration. Away from the madding crowds and catered with amazing food and drinks, party till the wee hours and let your New Years go off with a gay old bang!
Limited tickets are available, so get in quick - there are no door sales.


BOOK TICKETS

 

thicknjuicy

Melbourne Australia:
Thick & Juicy NYD
The day after the night before. Kick off a new decade in furry style with the world's best DJ's all under one roof.
The incomparable Corey Craig (NYC), Dom De Sousa (Syd) and the fabulous Matt Effect (San Diego) plus many more - a line up of gogo boys, fuzzy muscle men and sexy daddies will make you howl for more fun from 4pm. There are inside and outside dance spaces and even a dark room for all you horny guys out there.

BOOK TICKETS

 

 

nycnyehotrabbit

New York City USA:

Resolutions by Hot Rabbit

In the world's mega city, where can you have a gay old time on NYE for $30? Hot Rabbit of course! The Bowrey Ballroom is playing host to the gayest NYE in the city that never sleeps.  DJ MITCH FERRINO is on the decks, with performances by VanityQ and special guests. 

BOOK TICKETS

 

pushthebutton
London UK:

PopWorld: Push The Button

Hold on to your knickers, girls - Push The Button is BACK BACK BACK at PopWorld for their New Year’s Eve spectacular! Its one of the best nights for lovers of pop culture and pop music and a must do when in london.

Hosted at the iconic PopWorld with its light-up dance floor, two bars, and kick-ass sound system backstreet boys, material girls and dancing queens will ring in the new year in classic pop style.

From Ariana to Gaga, Lizzo to Little Mix, Rihanna to Loreen and everything in-between. Girl bands, boy bands, scandi-pop, impossible princesses – it’s a glamophonic, electronic, d-d-disco baby!

Please bear in mind this event ALWAYS SELL OUT so make sure you grab a ticket: early birds £15 / standard £20 / last remaining tickets £25.

BOOK TICKETS

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Interview: Monica Helms - creator of the Trans Pride flag

It's coming up to international Trans Pride Flag Day - the day that marks the occasion when Trans pioneer Monica Helms designed and made the very first flag and symbol for the Trans community - that had its roots across the LGBTQIA family.

We caught up with Monica to discuss this important milestone in our queer history.

What made you want to design the Trans Pride Flag?

I was having dinner with Mike Page, the man who designed the Bisexual Pride Flag.
He said to me that the Trans community should have their own flag.

We talked about it but nothing came to me.
He also said, "The important thing to remember is to keep it simple.
"The least amount of stitches makes it cheaper to make and cheaper to sell."

This was before flags were silk-screened. A couple of weeks later, I woke up one morning and while I lay in bed, the image came to me. I got up and drew out the design on paper.

So how did your concept progress to a physical representation of the Trans colours?

I liked what I saw, so I contacted the same company that made the Bi Flag and they sent me some swatches. I picked out the colors and a week later, I had the first Transsexual Pride Flag.


What would young young trans people like to hear from a pioneer such as yourself?

I think that the youth are very inquisitive about a movement that they grew into and started long before they were born.

They want to know who came before them and opened the doors so they could be themselves at a much younger age then many of us older people could.

I find that they like hearing how the Trans Flag came about and all the efforts people put into to make it as popular as it is today.

The flag they wear as a cape at Pride has a long history of where it's been and how it got there.

 

 


So what has been the impact of your designs on Pride celebrations globally?

It was 2013 when I looked at Pride photos around the world when I noticed that the Trans Flag and the Trans colors where popping up in many places. I was amazed at its popularity.

Then I realized that I had the original and I became scared of its safety.

I decided that I needed to find a place where it would remain safe from harm and that people could see it, knowing it's the first one.

I decided to start at the top, so I contacted the Smithsonian in Washington DC and just so happen they were starting to collect LGBTQ related items.

The first Trans Flag was perfect.

The Smithsonian doesn't just take donations like a thrift store. They want to know everything about the item and the person who is donating it.

 

So how did your life history effect the acceptance of the Trans flag?

When they learned about my Navy history, they decided the flag should be stored with other military-related flags.

After all the time spent communicating with the Smithsonian, I finally donated it to them on August 19, 2014. 15 years to the day when I created it.

In 2016, the original Trans Flag was displayed in the White House for President Obama's last LGBTQ day for his time in office.

Thats incredible Monica - thank you so much for spending this time with Guidetogay.com - you have a book detailing the journey and history of this iconic symbol - where can people get it?

It is called, "More Than Just a Flag" because I felt that I have done many things in my life other than creating the Flag. I wanted people to see that the person who created the Trans Flag has done many more things for the Trans community over the years and that creating the Trans Flag was just a small part of it. It can be found on More Than Just A Flag

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What makes a great celebrant? One year since Australia changes law from man and woman to "two people".

It’s been a full year since the passing of Marriage Equality in Australia – and GayWeddingGuide.com service providers have been making dreams come true all year! In this series, we will be chatting to some of the amazing service providers that don’t discriminate, and spread love all around our great country… we got to catch up with the one and only Shona Tough from Aye Do Weddings to chat about the amazing people that become celebrants, what they do and the impact a year of equality has had on the profession.

Shelly and Rach with son sm 

Hi Shona! Thanks for chatting with us – so what it that made you want to become a wedding celebrant?

 

I was looking for a career change after 20 years in Senior marketing roles I had enough of being stuck in an office all day.  I love public speaking and have always had an interest in theatre and drama.  I was invited to a wedding in the UK,  an outdoor festival wedding, glamping and dancing under the stars.  I loved the vibe and thought it would be great to be part of such a special occasion.  I decided to take the course in 2014 and qualified in 2015.   I felt like I could bring a young, modern and fresh approach to being a celebrant.  

 

So bringing such a fresh approach to the profession - what is your style as a wedding celebrant?

 

It depends on the couple, it’s their special day and I am there to facilitate it and make sure it is everything they wish for. I listen to each couple and understand what would be appropriate to meet their needs. I like to tell their story and bring out their personalities.  I am a fun and friendly person and that comes through in my ceremonies.  I have had plenty laughs and smiles from guests, I am never too serious, it's a special celebration so it should be fun and friendly (or funky and flamboyant as one couple asked for!)

 

How do you see the differences between same-sex couple and heterosexual couple's ceremonies?

 

The same-sex couples are very emotional because a lot of these couples have waited many years to be able to make their commitment. The older couples generally have family members that they want to involve and this makes it really special.   I have had gay men being given away by their daughters, a lesbian couple involving their daughter, one couple who had their young niece and nephew as witnesses.   These family members fought long and hard for equality so to be part of the day is an honour and quite emotional for everyone.

 

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For the full article, visit our sister website www.gayweddingguide.com.au

 

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The Modern Sex-pest

I keep hearing from gay men my age (yes, I’m old enough to be referred to as “daddy”) and a lot younger guys about a current plague of guys on line I’m calling the ‘Modern Sex-pest’.
 
Let’s get something straight, there is nothing attractive, flattering or even sexy about contacting someone you don’t know and within the first few lines of communication asking for a cock pic. It’s actually ugly... not the cock pic, the attitude.
 
Like here is an example, a guy messages me on Facebook Messenger (Could be Instagram/ Snapchat/ WhatsApp, any form of social media). Don’t know him, we have no mutual friends, no idea how they even found me when my profile is private. Conversation starts nice enough, “Hello, how are you and good morning”. It’s early so I say “I’m just waking up, how are you?” I get a thumbs up “I’m good thanks. Can I see you wanking?”
 
Wow – that’s forward.
 
I look in his profile and just like that old saying “People who talk the most have the least to say”, these days it seems to be the “People who are the most forward have the least to show”. The profile is limited, only thing on the timeline is shared from other people, not giving anything of himself except a filtered profile pic with “beauty face app” set to FULL.
 
Now, I’m a sexual being and in the past I had no problem sharing pics or vids of myself cause it was fun and exciting, but the key word here is “sharing”, and that’s the difference, there is a change happening where these type of people don’t want to share, instead they talk to you like it’s a job interview, they ask all the questions and reveal nothing about themselves, except maybe to find a few common interests with you and that’s only to gain your trust and think you have a ‘friend’ on line.
 
So you send a photo, and you wait for a return photo, and you wait, and you ask, and they come back with “man, you look so great” or “that’s so big” or something to that nature and they ask for another photo – guess what, that’s your cue for “they aren’t sending anything”. Stop all communication, block them even. They will call you rude and make it seem like they were only having fun and try and weasel their way back in. They are wasting your time and playing with you in a way that’s not going to result in an orgasm.
 
And those apps like Grindr, Scruff, Tindr, they are great, love them, they have a genuine purpose; however they also can allow a certain type of person a platform to manipulate you into meeting with them and they have either used another person’s pics on their profile, or put up a front of being someone they are not. The classic line of “I go to the gym” does not count if you are only walking past it on your way to Hungry Jacks.
 
If you decide to meet up with someone, and I’ve had to say this to my niece so it’s not just a gay issue, and they are not who you thought they were cause of a pic that was decades old or not even them, you have every right to turn around and leave, don’t even entertain the idea of a ‘mercy’ fuck. Same as if you meet them and within 5 seconds they are trying to rip your clothes off and have sex with you. If you haven’t given the ok for this and they are making you feel extremely uncomfortable, get up and get out. I’m sure when you arranged to meet it may have been just a hook up or to get to know them, however when it’s not a mutual and not working for you a sex pest like that is verging on rape.
 
I had one guy turn up to my place years ago and I said to his face “They are not your pics, you’re a liar” and I shut the door in his face and he said “I used those pics cause I knew you wouldn’t fuck me if I used my real pics, and you’re so rude for shutting the door in my face” – no mate, you are a liar, and what is rude is you assuming I’d be so horny I wouldn’t care what you looked like. Trust me, I was horny, but pretending to be someone you are not is a massive turn off.
 
What’s the point of writing this? Hmmm, good question, gets it off my hairy chest for one, and I wanted it to be a reminder out there for anyone reading this that’s had similar experiences to know that there is nothing wrong with you at all, stand your ground, don’t give in to the insistent pressure of someone online or in person that you don’t know trying to get naked photos/ cock pics/ sex from you. They are not being flattering, they are not sincere, they certainly won’t travel half way across the world to be with you cause “OMG you’re so hot
 
It’s all a game I know, and some people score and win big meeting someone for either just great sex or finding love, however let’s play it all a bit smarter and give these people spoiling it for everyone exactly what they deserve – nothing!
 
Have a bit of dignity and self-respect, something none of these types of modern sex-pests have.
 
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Dancing in the moonlight with Damien Mancell

How are you?… and where are you ?
I’m at home in Sydney , finishing off some music . Im really good by the way…


Tell us about the new single “Moonlight” ?
“Moonlight” was written about a big night out in Sydney. its semi autobiographical. I wrote the words on a napkin in a club one night and sang them into my phone. Then I created the idea with my collaborator Steve Mellare, and we just crafted the song very quickly. I was so happy with it , i knew it had to be a single. It was the final track written for the album, along with another song “Roll The Dice”, which sounds nothing like “Moonlight”. It's my dance pop moment on the record. 


You’ve got an album in the works, what can you tell us about it?
The album is a long time coming, BUT it is coming in the next few months . I have about 17 songs already to go. The album is very electronic. quite old school dance, massive 90’s influence. I was listening to a lot of Pet Shop Boys and 90’s Rave at the time. Steve (Mellare), my producer is a massive fan of New Order and a lot of electronica. We meet somewhere in the middle. I also love the pop sensibilities of Kylie Minogue, Britney… good pop, well-written pop, so I have a healthy dose of that in there too. I have my collaborations with Chunky Astronaut and a hot feature with a female rapper MZ Sammy G, who slayed her verse in the track “Round N Round”… 


Is there a video planned for “Moonlight”?
yes Im doing it in a week, without giving too much away , think projections, lots of colours in darkness... Moody, sexy... 

 
You have Chunky Astronaut again remixing your track , and also DJ James Tobin. How did that come about?
I always have the “Chunky Man” on a single, as i think he’s awesome, and he delivers kickass remixes. The remix by James Tobin is brilliant. Im a big fan of his work as a remixer and a DJ. He’s an amazing DJ, so I just sent him a request and he said yes. Some remixers have a little ego about doing work, but he was amazingly easy to work with, and he delivered the goods. Its getting good spins in Europe, which is all I can ask for . He’s very talented, and I’m glad Ive got him now before everyone wants him. His remix of Greg Gould is hot. I would love to have him do more remixes. Who knows?


Its a great remix. Who is on your wish list of people to work with?
I would love to work with heaps of people in the dance scene in sydney but I feel its a little closed here with people not wanting to collaborate. I would love to do a track with Mark Loasby again. I would love US DJ corey Craig to do a track with me, because not only is he a friend, but he has amazing dance sensibilities. He knows dance music backwards and is frighteningly talented. DJ Andrew Gibbons from the US as well, because he’s a phenomenal DJ. 


You always have remixes on all your singles, why are they important?
I think Ive always wanted them to show a different side of what i do. I also like to showcase the DJ or remixer. Like Chunky Astronaut have their own following, and to dip into their world is fun. The same with Robot Diaries, they are nuts, but I loved the remixes I had done from them. Mark Loasby remixes are pretty spectacular to. He gets the LGBT dance floor and nails it every time. I was so happy for him when his remix of “shine” (Damien’s 2010 pop hit) went well in gay clubs in some european countries..


Where are the majority of your fanbase based?
mainly use and selected European countries, not much in Oz yet, but I hope to change that. It would be nice to break my homeland. Its good to get support from people like JOY FM, and Queer Radio here though. Im beyond appreciative.


You recently became a target for evangelical groups. What was that about ?
Keyboard warriors with too much time on their hands really. They go after “OUT” artists by flooding their emails , twitter DM’s …etc… with thousands of emails with pro christian stuff. At first it makes you angry but after a while you just get used to it. They have tried to break into my website a couple of hundred times this year. Its annoying, and makes me want to go further to piss them off. Give them something to “really” complain about. 


Do you feel that , as an out LGBT performer , doors close because of your disclosure?
its closed doors in the mainstream, with  major labels saying they don’t know where to “place me”, or they don’t know how to promote me. I think that’s a bit backward, but I see what they are promoting and I may not be bland enough for them. But i do feel that its probably better for me artistically that I get to do what I want. I write and produce myself, I commission my own remixes, I style myself, and do my own visuals. I have complete control on what I do.I love collaboration, and by owning what I do , I get the confidence to work with established people. I’ve had labels try and “straighten” me out over the years to no avail. 


Would you ever play Mardi Gras?
Love totoo... Its on the bucket list. Though Im not sure Im on the MG radar. I've always gone to the party, since 1994, so to even get 5 minutes up there would be a dream. I’ve had my remixes played there before, but as for a live show… sadly no.


Who are you currently listening to?
I love the new STEPS record, I think its one of the strongest records in years. I like the new Goldfrapp, and Im loving a lot of the remixes coming from Britney’s “Glory” album . There are some amazing bootleg mixes out there. 


any message for our readers ?
yeah, thanks for everything , head over to iTunes and grab “Moonlight”, or to any of my socials to keep up to date with my goings on.

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Our favourite looks from the Marco Marco Fashion show

Underwear designer and avant guard fashionista, Marco Marco took to the runway this past week with their trademark fashion show featuring a bevvie of trans, drag and cis models. Its always a feast for the eyes, given that the designers offerings cover the various body shapes and sizes in eclectic and vibrant strips, patterns and materials.

We have gathered some of our favourite looks from some of the celeb models on show.

Vanity Faire (Vanity)

One of our good mates in Australia, Vanity STOLE the runway this year, with an incredible shape and style we don't think America has seen before. Totally fierce and fabulous as only Vanity can do... and as some of you know - she is THE Vanity, from Wigs By Vanity (as seen on Drag superstars heads the world over.)

 

 

Ginger Eddie

Eddie Eduardo is pure lickable Hercules in this speedo style pant. The stripes and the eyeliner just make you want to sit at the end of the runway in a trenchcoat. lol. Work those poses Eddie!

 

Raja

She is her own natural style icon, so having Raja on the Marco Marco runway was a real treat. And what an outfit! It's shimmer-tastic. You might remember her from Drag Race or her many youtube web series.

 

Courtney Act

She is the songbird that can turn lipgloss and mascara into FACE, and serve it! Well she is definately serving us this Marco Marco creation. 

Here are some more hot shots from the night including more drag superstars Adele Delano, Alaska Thunderfuck, Detox

 

Check out the entire video from the show on our videos page.

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Never Marry an Icon - The Loss of One

Each year many wonderful entertainers and people in the public eye unfortunately pass, and for the most part many of them in our lives will go unnoticed. It is, after all, sometimes hard to grieve for the loss of someone we have never met, or that we are distanced from either physically or socially.


So why is it other celebrity deaths produce a sense of grief and loss? A celebrity, or iconic performer, that touched our lives at some pivotal point becomes like a friend we view from a distance. They open our minds to new ideas, they inspire us, they motivate us, and they have an uncanny ability at times to help us feel good when no when else can, whether it’s watching them on the big screen or simply listening to them.


Sometimes it can just be the simple notion that they allow us a sense of just being ourselves when surrounded by a world of conformity. Bowie, Prince, Robin Williams, all incredibly talented and unique performers.


However let’s not also forget Pete Burns who passed recently of a massive cardiac arrest. Pete, from ‘Dead or Alive’, may only be remembered by many for being a one-hit wonder and someone in recent years that made every Top 10 list of “Botched up Plastic Surgeries”.


Pete Burns was more than that. In a time of Gender Bending in the 80’s he took that concept and bent it another 69 degrees. He also had a cut throat no bullshit attitude and was ready to speak his mind with an acid tongue well before Nicki Minaj was even thought of. He didn’t just teach me to wear whatever I liked and not care what society thought; he taught me it was ok to speak my mind.


So when we mourn a celebrity death, we don’t always shed a tear because we knew them personally, we shed a tear because in some way, shape or form, they helped us know ourselves a little better.

 

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