Bent Con

From comic-books to gaming, sci-fi, fantasy and horror

Category: Music & Musicians

Larger than Life LGBT Comic Book Characters in Rock and Pop Music

Posted on May 3, 2017  in Comics, Music & Musicians

Rock music, and consequently, popular music, plays a significant role in the LGBT community. In many ways, the LGBT community can even be credited with architecting the phenomenal movement that this rock music. The roster of iconic LGBT figures in the rock community is endless, with these icons often working to ensure that a stamp of themselves and their community is left to the materials they produce. Iconic rockers have added a fresh and LGBT-like aesthetic to the music they produce, which has helped to fight the misconstructions that cause the development of oppressive social norms.

See, rock music is a perfect ground to release the innermost expressions of artistic vision and individuality, as seen in countless rock stars who have lived comic book like characters not just on stage, in the personal lives, or in their music, but in their everyday lives.

This is why rock music, comic books, and the LGBT community have a common thread that unites them, and seemingly fights the norms that have been ingrained in our culture as a whole.

Without much further ado, let’s take a look at 5 iconic LGBT Figures in rock and pop music, and get those Spotify playlists rolling. So put your headphones on (or get them at iThingum), take them anywhere you go, and listen to an aural orgasmic experience of epic proportions.
Let’s go!

Janis JoplinJanis Joplin

If you scour the internet for stories about Janis Joplin, you will soon discover that the icon was known for a few things; her enormous appetite for sex, with both men and women, drugs and alcohol. Friends and acquaintances of the legend have confirmed that the revered blues-rock singer had strings of relationships with women such as Peggy Casserta. Unfortunately, Janis passed away from a heroin overdose in 1971.

Dave Davies

Dave Davis was one of the members of the band The Kinks. In the band, he was mainly on the guitar but he would also participate as a background singer. The band was started as a collaboration between his brother Ray and another friend known as Pete. His band successfully released albums all through the 80s, however, the band disbanded to pursue solo careers.

David Bowie

Ziggy Stardust himself in the flesh – and the man that almost singlehandedly changed rock music, and served as its master mind for decades until his untimely passing in 2016. David Bowie is one of those musicians that are famed for defining an era in music. Bowie rose to fame as a result of the 1969 hit Space Oddity. Bowie was famed for his flamboyant and sometimes androgynous personas, as well as for his unique taste and style in music. In the 70s, he and his wife admitted to both being bisexuals, which helped closeted people to be more willing and open to come out.

Sia

Well known for her hit song Chandelier, Australian artist Sia is one of the most successful artists today. She has helped to shape contemporary music by creating unique and expressive songs. Aside from collaborating with thousands of similarly successful artists, she has also written for superstars such as Rihanna (Diamonds) and Beyonce (Pretty Hurts).

Sam Smith

Sam Smith started off his career like many other artists; he was new to the scene and was relatively unknown. However, his amazing voice and incredible falsetto soon became a regular in the airwaves. The openly gay musician has won numerous awards and is critically acclaimed in the music scene.

[Top]

Category: Music & Musicians

Space Rock 101: The Basics

Posted on November 24, 2016  in Music & Musicians

“Dark star crashes
pouring its light
into ashes
Reason tatters
the forces tear loose
from the axis
Searchlight casting
for faults in the
clouds of delusion”
– Grateful Dead, “Dark Star”

There’s nothing like blasting fine space rock music through some good speakers or headphones – hearing the layered instrumentation, voices, guitars and percussion can literally be a personal trip of your own that you can listen for yourself.

If you know Pink Floyd and Hawkwind, then it is safe to assume that you know what space rock is. Space rock is a genre of music derivative of progressive psychedelic rock. The stylistic character of progressive rock, which allowed musicians to stretch the genre’s musical boundaries, is what paved the way for the growth and success of space rock music. The rock music that you enjoy today has its roots in the psychedelic artistic trends that characterized most of the mid-1960s. During this period, folk and British bands were busy attempting to change the face of music by abandoning traditional tenets of songwriting and adopting a fluid song structure to write their music. As a result, the songs created did not follow the natural convention of writing where singers would write a verse then chorus then verse again. Additionally, these new age artists of the period also started incorporating elements of Eastern music such as Indian voices and instrumentation.

The Basic Formulation of Space Rock

Space rock music contained certain principles of jazz, which when incorporated into the psychedelic sound (think of the late 60’s heyday of the Grateful Dead) created aggressive and distinct expressions of rock music that you know today. Space rock also makes use of lyrics that are very cosmic-like, as well as loud reverberating electric guitars that made it addictive. Among the many changes brought along with the movement also includes the use of electronic devices that could alter the way a musician’s voice sounded, which you could say provided a platform for the development of new studio technology such as the auto tune that is predominant in modern music. You’re welcome, Kanye West!Space rock musicians

The Link to Krautrock and Psychedelia

Space rock musicians incorporated krautrock elements that included recurring rhythmic beats that almost made the listener feel like they were on a musical high. The musicians tended to use synthesizers that supplied bubbling soothing tones and spacey progressions that provoked a smooth flow, making you feel like you were up in space. If you are ever at a live psychedelic or space rock concert today, you will notice artist incorporate cosmic elements such as light beams that may appear trippy but actually amplify the show.

Resounding Legacy

Although the space rock movement only lasted for a short time, the influence it had on the face of music can still be felt today. An example of a song that accurately describes the movement is the late Bowie’s ‘Space Oddity.’ Bands that identified with the movement include Pink Floyd and Gong while popular contemporary bands that still produce space rock music today include Ozric Tentacles and Monkey 3. While the future of space rock music remains unpredictable, it is evident that its contribution can still be felt years after its inception. If you are lucky, the movement will revive itself, but only if the galaxy wishes it so.

Now that you’ve grounded yourself in the basics of the genre, you will be in a better place to relisten to your Captain Beyond and Wishbone Ash albums, they should be back in your list of tracks to enjoy – they deserve a second spin, don’t they? Cheers!

[Top]