STYLE ICON: PAUL LEKAKIS
I feel a little bit conflicted about talking about Paul Lekakis, for two reasons:
a) the same old thing of me wanting to like something and not have everyone else like it and then it becomes less special (but I'm trying to get over this and it's working).
b) Paul Lekakis is really pretty, in a conventional gay male sense and I don't want to necessarily reinforce racist/sexist notions of beauty, though I do greatly admire Paul Lekakis (individually) as a musician / performer / cultural icon.
That all being said I think Paul Lekakis is really cool. He had worked as a model when he was younger, and apparently discovered his musical and dancing abilities one night while he was out clubbing in Europe, having been sent there for modeling work. I tend to think that professional models, especially male models, aren't really into beauty. Not really, not deep down. I think they know that it's kind of a sham. Anyone who's ever had their picture taken knows this, so I think that Paul must know it too. I'm totally projecting and here is why: because in my fantasy, Paul Lekakis is not entranced by his own beauty, he knows it's sort of superficial and he knows that he "has to" look a certain way in order to make a living. That's my take on that.
He's best known for the song "Boom Boom Boom (Let's Go Back To My Room)". It's such a weird song. It's Hi-NRG, I guess. I don't know how I would define that genre. It's definitely dance music, and it's really gay. It's about gay fucking, and while the lyrics aren't explicitly sexual, the breath-as-rhythm-section and plaintive wails of young Paul's singing is the definition of "sensual".
This reminds me: I was sleeping with a former lover a little while ago and he asked me "Are you always like this? You're such a sensual lover" and if I had been drinking milk I would have shot it out of my nose.
Anyways, "Boob Boom Boom" is a totally necessary song, a classic jam. I read an interview with Paul where he talked about getting really famous in the gay club scene and going on tour with his songs. Around this time he was also getting really into drugs, and spent a lot of money. He said that often at gay bars the other acts would be go-go boys, so he felt like he had to compete with that, stripping onstage, etc.
He released one full-length album that I know of, 1990s Tattoo It. I'm not gonna lie, it's a little weird.
It's kind of all-over the map. The title track is a reference, I believe, to Lekakis' public disclosure of being HIV positive, in 1989. I wasn't really a globally-conscious queer adult then, but I don't think it's ever easy to publicly disclose being HIV+, especially as a public performer person, and especially in 1989. SO: props for that to begin with. This is a pop album. I think what seems so weird to me is that it's really clean-sounding professional dance-pop, but it's also really obviously gay. Obviously I am a child of the moon-- I only listen to punk bands and I really only listen to queer and girl punk bands. I'm aware of the thing of "queer music". But when I heard Paul Lekakis for the first time in high school I was really inspired. He seemed to be doing something really restrictive (making pop music) and maintaining a certain amount of plain queerness, in both lyrical content and form. I love it. It makes me want to be a pop star.
Here's paul performing his hit. I often sing and dance around my room in my socks and undies to it:
Of course, when I actually perform, it's closer to Paul's actual performances:
Whatever. Party on.