A wise gay man once said, ‘music is a language, can’t you read?’ (Or something like that). But within that language there is a nebulous network of dialects and accents, some of which sing louder to homosexual ears.
With that in mind, !! omg blog !! set about selecting the 10 gayest songs of the year. What exactly defines a song as ‘gay’? That’s a tough one. Many gay artists don’t want to be pigeonholed as gay, yet others aggressively pursue the gay market to build buzz. Gay anthems are generally defined by a wistful tone and perennial outsider point-of-view, and while that sentiment holds true in 2010, the whole outsider thing is a bit of a bummer (pardon the pun).
At any rate, gay listeners sometimes adopt a song as an anthem regardless of the artist’s intent or sexual orientation. We all need our anthems and so each of the following 10 songs are on this list because they filled our hearts with ineffable gay joy… and our heads with thoughts of peen.
READ THE TOP 10 GAYEST SONGS OF THE YEAR AFTER THE JUMP!
10. Patrick Wolf, “Time of My Life”
A late-breaking but stellar pop single by baritone-voiced Brit Patrick Wolf, “Time of My Life” finds its singer breaking free right from the chains and fluttering away with an uplifting string section.
9. Lady Gaga, “Alejandro”Lady Gaga has described this ABBA homage as “a celebration and an admiration of gay love” that “confesses my envy of the courage and bravery they require to be together.” You know, it ain’t always easy to shove your tongue up another man’s butthole but sometimes it’s the most valiant thing you can do in the heat of the moment.
8. Perfume Genius, “Learning”
Seattle-based musician Mike Hadreas poured his demons into his piano and composed this achingly beautiful ballad, also the title track for his equally brilliant debut album as Perfume Genius.
7. Vampire Weekend, “Diplomat’s Son”
Why didn’t this song get a single release? Why couldn’t Jake Gyllenhaal star in the video for this song, which is all about sparking a dube and doing it with another dude at boarding school? (p.s. extra gay points for the M.I.A. sample.)
6. Kim Ann Foxman, “Creature”
Hercules and Love Affair front man Andy Butler vowed that his MR.INTL Records imprint wouldn’t stray from a golden-era house and techno production style. He and bandmate Kim Ann Foxman certainly delivered on that promise with the sultry vogue-ing anthem “Creature”.
5. Scissor Sisters, “Invisible Light”
Scissor Sisters front man Jake Shears has been careful to describe the tone of the band’s third album Night Work as “overtly sexual” rather than “overtly gay”. Fair enough, but there’s something about this song that is just so… hypnotically homoerotic. Oh I know it’s the part when Sir Ian McKellen booms “Painted whores! Sexual gladiators! Fiercely old party children! All wake from their slumber to debut the Bacchanal!”
(p.s. Bacchanalias totally had a pop culture moment in 2010 not only thanks to this song, but also thanks to overtly sexual vampire show True Blood.)
4. Ray Mang, “Bullet Proof (featuring Lady Miss Kier)”
Lady Miss Kier angrily proclaims “I don’t want your war!” over a squelching house beat on Ray Mang‘s clubby cover of George Clinton’s “Bullet Proof”. This should’ve been the rallying cry for 2010.
3. Mark Ronson & The Business Intl., “Somebody To Love Me”Boy George is singing two octaves lower than he used to but still manages bring the drama on this uncharacteristically somber single from mega-producer Mark Ronson. It’s the gravelly sound of a life experienced so listen up because one day it will be you.
2. H.U.N.X., “Can A Man Hear Me?”
CLICK TO PLAY:
Hunx and His Punx main man Seth Bogart delivers a stand-out vocal performance on this unrequited boner jam. This song sounds as though H.U.N.X., Bogart’s dance project with electronic outfit Teengirl Fantasy, aimed for the gay ’90s house beat to end all gay ’90s house beats. The sleeper success of the summer!
1. Robyn, “Dancing On My Own”
SHOCKER! Yes, we’ve selected Robyn‘s “Dancing On My Own” as the gayest song of 2010. Why? It’s the quintessential outsider anthem; a song about loneliness and longing that strips the nightclub of its glamorized mythology and zeroes in on the dance floor’s voyeuristic potential. It’s a song with universal appeal of course, but one that has been undeniably embraced by gay listeners much like Madonna’s “Vogue” or “Blind” by Hercules and Love Affair. In a year when major label artists fronted pathetic ‘aspirational’ club music to distract us from these trying economic times, Robyn proved it’s possible to create beautiful escapist pop music while keeping it painfully real.