Love Me Like You Should

Disco icon Sylvester may best be known for the international hit singles ‘You Make Me Feel (Mighty Real)’, ‘Dance (Disco Heat)’, ‘Do You Wanna Funk’ and ‘Menergy’, but the recording artist’s groundbreaking career also furthered queer visibility in popular culture. Leaving a legacy that continues to influence today’s pop music.

Through the compelling new documentary ‘Love Me Like You Should: The Brave and Bold Sylvester’, produced for Pride 2020 by Amazon Music in collaboration with filmmaker Lauren Tabak and writer/consulting producer Barry Walters. The short documentary details the life and times of Sylvester James Jr., known mononymously as Sylvester.

When I saw Sylvester, my life was altered, my life was changed for the better. As a Black queer gay man, any glimmer of seeing oneself reflected back at them, through our culture, changes lives.

Billy Porter

The legacy of a musician who set new precedent for genderqueer, gay and black entertainers has been revisited the new mini-documentary. Sylvester’s story comes to life once more and the true extent of his impact – inside and out of the music industry – is explored.

It is a compilation of archival footage, as well as rare performance clips, charting Sylvester’s rise from Los Angeles choir boy to glam 1970s hit-maker. Starting with his birth in South Central Los Angeles, it charts the course of his move to San Fransisco’s Castro District and later breakthrough as a singer/songwriter.

He crossed over, he was a genderfluid Black man in mainstream music. That hasn’t happened since. There’s been a lot of us who have tried – and I’ve been trying for 30 years – nobody did it like Sylvester.

Billy Porter

While the significant influence of black culture on mainstream music extends back at least a century, James was among the first non-binary artists to achieve superstardom. As pointed out in the documentary, he championed gender fluidity years before it would be called that through his unapologetic style and demeanor.

The filmmakers also incorporate interviews with Sylvester’s sister Bernadette Baldwin, singer, actor and activist Billy Porter as well as collaborators like musician Peter Mintun, producer/songwriter James ‘Tip’ Wirrick, former background singer Martha Wash (Two Tons of Fun/Weather Girls), and Sylvester biographer Josh Gamson.

Sylvester was always ahead of us. He did things like talk about being married to a man before gay marriage was a thought. He responded to Joan Rivers saying that he was this drag queen by saying, ‘But I’m not a drag queen, I’m Sylvester.’ He wasn’t saying there’s something wrong with being a drag queen, he was saying that’s not how gender works. It was gender fluidity and nonbinary gender before we were really there.

Josh Gamson

In addition to interviews, and with his version of ‘God Bless The Child’ on the bacjground, – its is musical treasure! The kind of music he loved more then disco! – the 15-minute doc shows rare archival footage of Sylvester, including performances at The Stud, the historic San Francisco gay bar that recently shuttered. It also depicts how a 1979 show at the San Francisco War Memorial Opera House was a healing, joyous moment for the city in the wake of the assassination of gay politician Harvey Milk.

Sylvester died at the age of 41 on December 16th, 1988 after a long battle of an AIDS-related illness. He had attended the San Francisco Pride parade in a wheelchair shortly before passing on to show solidarity even in his final years. His legacy, however, continues to live on…..

Watch the 15-minute documentary:

Amazon has also curated a playlist called Pride History on which ‘You Make Me Feel (Mighty Real)’ is an entry.

Want to read the whole story of Sylvester? Use the ‘Sylvester’ tag….

Here TV Premieres Season Finale of Now What?! Directed by Emmy-nominated actor/producer David Millbern

Here TV, America’s first and largest LGBTQ+ video channel, today announced the December 27th season finale of the Here TV original series Now What?!, created, written and directed by Emmy-nominated actor/producer David Millbern.

Searing with realism and playing in real time, these personal exposés begin at the moment of climax. Each episode reveals the unique nakedness of après sex pillow talk, which leads to the inevitable… “Now What?!”

Working with talented writer and producer David Millbern on scripted series such as Now What?! gives Here TV the opportunity to explore complex relationships that span sexual orientation. Now What?! touches on common personal experiences we all have, with the pause for introspection and growth.

John Mongiardo, President of Here TV

Now What?! stars Paul Galliano and was produced by David Millbern and John Mongiardo. All three seasons of the series were executive produced by Paul Colichman and Stephen P. Jarchow, who have produced and distributed more than 200 films and series including Academy Award-winners ‘Gods and Monsters’ and ‘Departures’.

Here TV launched in 2004, making it the world’s first SVOD LGBTQ+ video service, and is available on all major US cable operators including Xfinity, Spectrum, Cablevision, FiOS, U-Verse, Cox, as well Here TV where it can be viewed on all iOS and Android mobile devices. Here TV reaches millions of viewers each month and has produced Academy award-winning films in addition to receiving four Daytime Emmy Award nominations. Come into the beautiful world of Here TV.

The Hidden Activist Campaign That Spread a Rainbow in Russia

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The 2018 FIFA World Cup is currently being hosted in Russia, a nation who has had an unwelcoming track record when it comes to the rights of the LGBTQ community. Gay ‘propaganda’ is banned in Russia, but that did not stop a group of soccer fans at the 2018 World Cup from promoting LGBTQ rights in Moscow with a subtle – yet colorful – protest.

Activists from Spain, the Netherlands, Brazil, Mexico, Argentina and Colombia traveled to the Russian capital wearing their national jerseys, which conveniently create a rainbow pride flag when they line up side-by-side.

Though Russian federal laws prohibit public demonstrations of LGBTQ rights, including the showcasing of the rainbow Pride Flag, six activists from six different countries have gathered together to send a political message to the country and the rest of the world.

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Created by Spanish digital agency LOLA Mullenlowe and Spanish LGBTQ organisation FELGTB (National Federation of Lesbians, Gays, Transsexuals and Bisexuals), The Hidden Flag saw each of its six members concealing the Pride Flag by wearing the football kit of their native country.

The motley crew of protesters included, from left to right, Marta Márquez (red jersey), president of an LGBTQ advocacy group in Spain; Eric Houter (orange), a straight man from the Netherlands participating in honor of his gay brother; Eloi Pierozan Junior (yellow), a marketing manager from a small town in Brazil; Guillermo León (green), a documentary filmmaker from Mexico; Vanesa Paola Ferrario (blue), an audiovisual editor from Argentina; and Mateo Fernández Gómez (purple), an advertising art director from Colombia.

In a statement posted to The Hidden Flag’s website, the activists “wanted to take advantage of the World Cup to denounce the situation in Russia and take the flag to the streets”. To do so, the six of them walked around in this formation in various public places in Moscow to unbeknownst authorities.

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The response to The Hidden Flag’s project has been largely positive, even creating the viral #TheHiddenFlag hashtag. Come into the beautiful and colotful world of  The Hidden Flag.

 

 

 

 

Nyle Dimarco by Taylor Miller

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On America’s Next Top Model, Nyle DiMarco broke barriers when he became the first Deaf contestant in the history of America’s Next Top Model. Well, he is more than amazingly attractive, that’s for sure. Activist and male model Nyle Dimarco poses for a messy and artistic centered editorial embracing the love. All captured by fashion photographer Taylor Miller for the latest issue of Gay Times. Covered in American Sign Language across his body, DiMarco speaks to the magazine about being sexually fluid, growing up deaf and the importance of visibility.

There is a massive number of people, groups of people, who are not being heard or who are overlooked. Despite the power of social media, which could be a useful tool to educate people, we’ve become so divided and so afraid to open up, listen, and communicate. We need to start listening to each other. How can 466 million people with hearing loss join in on that conversation and find their ‘identity’ if they are denied access to what they’re saying? Often there are not interpreters at Pride events for Deaf LGBTQ people and allies. The best solution is to have Deaf and people with disabilities involved in organising Pride events.

Nyle DiMarco

In the issue he opens up about growing up deaf revealing, “I’m the fourth generation in my family that is Deaf. My two brothers, parents, grandparents, and great grandparents are all Deaf”.

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In total, I have over 25 Deaf members in my family. We’ve been using sign language and passing it down for generations. ‘I Love You’ painted on his body in American Sign Language by artist Cacho Falcon – is so important to him. “American Sign Language is my native language. ASL gave me the language foundation I needed for success from an early age. Growing up with ASL I was able to dictate my life, able to define myself, and able to identify myself as Deaf Queer with pride and confidence – without language and communication barriers”.

American Sign Language is my native language. ASL gave me the language foundation I needed for success from an early age. Growing up with ASL I was able to dictate my life, able to define myself, and able to identify myself as Deaf Queer with pride and confidence – without language and communication barriers.

Nyle Dimarco

DiMarco also shares his thoughts on the representation of deaf people in Hollywood. “Hollywood needs to diversify because true representation matters. I also stress the importance of having Deaf people involved behind the stage or behind the camera because they help cultivate the truth of the story. We need to empower Deaf people in Hollywood because we have thousands of fascinating stories to share. And those stories need to be told by Deaf people through our unique Deaf eyes and perspective”.

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During the cover shoot, DiMarco also opens up about his sexual identity. “I believe we always need more education around the idea that sexuality is a spectrum. When a person asks me what being fluid means, I always tell them that there is no one right way to define fluidity. There needs to be more positive representation of male fluidity. Everyone should feel represented and valued and that has a lot to do with who we see on screen”.

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“I always felt different. Growing up was a little difficult because I never talked about it and I didn’t have role models who were like me. When I started talking about it, it got much easier. It helped me discover my identity. Talking about it also helped me realize that despite not having role models growing up, I could be one for the future generation”.

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The full interview is available in the latest issue of Gay Times, which is available now. For more information visit Gay Times.

 

 

 

The power of love: Etienne Cardiles’ moving eulogy for his husband Xavier Jugelé

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Last Thursday, on the Champs-Élysées in Paris, a single shooter killed a 37-year-old police officer named Xavier Jugelé in the name of IS. For days, the news cycle – President Trump –  focused on how that terror attack would impact the French election.

But the biggest impact was on one man, Etienne Cardiles, Jugelé’s life partner. The husband of the French policeman who was shot dead last week has opened up about his ‘extreme and profound pain’.

Tributes have been flooding in for Xavier Jugelé, 37, who was murdered on Thursday while on duty on Champs Elysees avenue, in an attack which has since been claimed by so-called Islamic State. The murderer, the 39-year-old Karim Cheurfi, was killed at the scene. He had served more than 12 years in prison for shooting at police officers and was being investigated by intelligence service at the time.

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Jugele’s husband, Etienne Cardiles paid tribute to his “life of joy and laughter”. He spoke about his murdered husband today at a remembrance ceremony led by President Francois Hollande at Paris police headquarters. In front of hundreds of mourners like Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo and former president Nicolas Sarkozy and presidential candidates Emmanuel Macron and Marine Le Pen, Cardiles described his husband as a lover of music and theatre, and “a man full of culture and joy”.

Xavier Jugelé, who joined the Paris police force in 2010, was part of the response team called to the Bataclan theatre following the deadly Paris terror shooting in November 2015.

Xavier’s husband Etienne Cardiles delivered an emotional and powerful eulogy at a memorial service. In an emotional, moving speech, Cardiles told the crowd: “I’m suffering without hate. He repeated the quote coined by Antoine Leiris, who lost his wife during that terror attack and said: “You will not have my hatred”.

Husband of murdered Paris police officer delivers moving eulogy

On the morning of the attack, Xavier and Etienne were making plans to take a holiday together. “I returned home that evening without you, with an extreme and profound pain, that maybe, one day, will weaken”, Etienne said.

When I first got messages saying something had happened on the Champs Elysees, and that a policeman had died, a small voice told me it was you, and brought back to me that generous and healing phrase: ‘You will not have my hatred’.

Etienne told his husband that he does not feel hatred for those who killed him “because it is not like you. Because it does not correspond to anything that made your heart beat, nor why you entered the police force”.

Husband of murdered Paris police officer delivers moving eulogy

Because public service, helping others and protecting everyone was part of your education and your convictions – And tolerance, dialogue and patience were your strongest weapons.

Cardiles spoke lovingly, intimately and directly to Jugele, recalling how “going to the cinema to watch five films on a sunny August day would not make you blink.

Your favourite stars were Celine Dion, Zazie, Madonna, Britney Spears and so many others who made our windows rattle.

Theatre transported you to another world, where you lived fully.

You would shy away from no cultural activity

You would see the very worst films the day they came out, right to the end, no matter how bad they were.

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Etienne finished his speech by paying tribute to what was most important to Xavier:

A life of joy and laughter, in which love and tolerance were your uncontested masters.

You lived like a star, and leave like a star.

Xavier Jugelé has been promoted to police captain and awarded Chevalier of the Legion of Honor posthumously.

 

 

 

 

 

Nyle DiMarco for Buzzfeed by Taylor Miller

 

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Everytime Nyle DiMarco shows off with new pictures, video’s, ad commercials or even when he’s tweeting, he breaks off the internet, since he won ANTM season 22. This time you will love him even more.

Now the 27-year-old former America’s Next Top Model and Dancing With the Stars champion and winner is featured in an exclusive very steamy and wet photo shoot by Taylor Miller for Buzzfeed.

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How steamy, well, he took it all off for the viral website. As one does. Nyle is not afraid to show off the goods. He new was being naughty.

Here are a few others of our favorite pics from the shoot.

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Love has no labels

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For years, kiss cams have been a big part of American sports culture. At this years NFL Pro Bowl in Orlando they became a part of something bigger….. Love Has No Labels puts a twist on the kiss cam by turning it into a symbol for unbiased love.

Love has no age, Love has no gender
Love has no race, Love has no religion
Love has no diability
Love is about who you are, and not what you are

In the stadium, fans cheered for love in all its forms – regardless of race, gender, disability, age or religion. Because of that, there is só much meaning behind this video that everyone should digest and understand especially in times like today.

Love is universal and love is binding. Let us use it to our strength and fight for a better world….. Lets love!

This message is someting worth spreading….

 

 

 

Lush Cosmetics’ campaign for Valentine’s Day focuses on inclusivity

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Lush Cosmetics is sharing its collection of natural handmade bath and body products for Valentine’s Day this year with a standout campaign for Valentine’s Day.

Rather than choosing to depict only heterosexual couples in its marketing materials, Lush Cosmetics features two same-sex couples bathing together with its products. Naturally, some people have been quick to react to the progressive campaign for Valentine’s Day. Lush North America humorously responded on Twitter with a message saying:

Last week, we posted a photo that created quite the stir! Let us set the record straight. Big tubs – they do exist!!

A spokesperson for Lush told Metro: “Creating our Valentine’s Day visuals, we wanted to capture love between two people and we believe that’s what we have done here. The fact that our loyal and loving fans are starting their own conversations using our visuals and #loveislove absolutely warms our hearts”.

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Lush Cosmetics has long supported the LGBTQ community and in the past, has released products such as the #GayIsOk bath bar with proceeds going towards charities across the world.

 

 

 

Éden

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And the Lord God planted a garden in Eden, in the east, and there he put the man whom he had formed.

Genesis 2:8

In this story, João (Nuno Pardal) and Pedro (Pedro Sousa Loureiro) live in this garden. What João wants the most is for Pedro to be happy and the only way he found to make that happen is to support him in his escape with Sara (Sara Barros Leitão). On the other hand, Pedro learned how to love João and does not want to leave the garden. But one of them ate the forbidden fruit.

Director Fábio Freitas
Portugal 2014
12 mins

Fábio Freitas was born in Vila Franca de Xira in 1987. Graduated in Audiovisuals and Multimedia at Escola Superior de Comunicação Social, Lisbon (2010), works for seven years as Continuity Assistant at NBP/Plural (2007-2013). He has been working since 2013 in the production of Bem-vindo a Beirais, a successful series for the Portuguese Public Broadcasting System – RTP, and in several entertainment programs for the production company Shine Iberia. His first work in cinema was in 2012 as scriptwriter and producer of the short film Sara (2012), directed by Miguel Antunes. On the following year he directs his first short film Leaving (2013), exhibited in several international film festivals.

Come into the world of Éden