Monday, May 31, 2010
Monday’s Man: Randy Jones
Yes, In The Navy, YMCA, and Macho Man along with many others were the hits of the Village People. I’m sure everyone has their favorite singer from the Village People, but I’d be willing to bet that the one that tops the list of most would be Randy Jones. He definitely tops mine.
After Dark December 1977 featured Randy without the group that made him a household name. Here he is modeling at the "Disco Fantasy Fashion" show at the 1977 Billboard Disco Convention. On the left he is dancing in a quilted outfit from Camouflage and on the right he is modeling the Valentino look from Fiorucci.
One of the best fashion spreads that After Dark did was in the January 1978 issue. Randy, along with Patrick Branch and Tim Mauche, modeled swimwear and summer fashions in Key West.
The Village People were always on the turntable for me. I was 10 years old in 1978, but there was something about the album covers that I was always drawn to. Plus, let's face it, the music is fun, too.
Can’t Stop the Music is one of my favorite movies. It had some amazing women starring in it, like Valerie Perrine, June Havoc, Barbara Rush, Marilyn Sokol and the wonderful Tammy Grimes. The male leads were Bruce Jenner (yawn), Steve Guttenberg (for some reason screaming every line and acting annoying) and the Village People. It was the “fictional” tale of a “fictional” man who formed a “fictional” group called The Village People. It’s a fun film with ample opportunity to see smiling Randy having a ball.
Look for a What's On Wednesday post for this film to be done very, very soon.
The July 1980 issue of After Dark went off their normal layouts with their “Circus Issue”. It was one of their worst issues without many photos and uninspired writing. Unfortunately, this was the issue they featured the Village People and Can’t Stop the Music. If Randy and the guys or Can't Stop the Music had been featured in any other issue, there would have been a great article and a wonderful photo spread. Instead, this was what they did to the photos.
And that was the only one worth scanning. I guess I should be happy they featured the movie.
When I had my Flickr account, I had a set dedicated to Randy Jones and it was one of my most viewed sets. Randy contacted me because he had seen the set and just as I imagined, he was one of the nicest guys.
Randy is still performing and acting. You can keep up with Randy on Facebook and his site Randy Jones World. His website has a wonderful gallery full of photos like these and others:
He has a CD that you can order. I love his cover of "If I Can't Have You".
Also, his book Macho Man is a fun trip down memory lane for gay men growing up or coming out in Disco America.
Before Brokeback Mountain came out, there was only one gay cowboy I wanted to see and to tell you the truth, it's still Randy Jones. I love Randy's smile and he still looks hot!
Sunday, May 30, 2010
Saturday, May 29, 2010
Yes, you read right. This is one of those rare issues that was published to be on the newsstand for two months. Why? I have no idea. It wasn't like it was a double-sized issue. It didn't have any special features that would warrant a two month stay. I honestly believe that it was one of those times, they probably were having trouble filling up an issue. This was the start of After Dark's last full year. It would end in January 1983.
It looked so promising from the cover. Here we have the Dreamgirls in full feathers and sequins. Of course, one of those girls just happens to be another of my favorite actresses--Sheryl Lee Ralph.
I had already posted the best thing in this issue and it wasn't even a photo that went with an article. It was a photo that went with Kenn Duncan's Red Shoes series that they featured in the December 1978 issue. I had posted it during my week-long tribute to Maxwell Caulfield. Of course, we could always see it again.
The rest of the issue could have been so great. It was an issue that seemed dedicated to the Broadway stage. This should have been filled with theatrical stars, dancers, singers, etc... Sadly, it wasn't. Don't get me wrong, some were featured, but it should have been filled from cover to cover. They could definitely filled up a double-sized issue to warrant that two month stay.
Well, as the cover suggested, Dreamgirls did get a featured article. Louis Miele, the Editor-In-Chief (after William Como), wrote the article with photos by Martha Swope.
I'll have to look back, but I don't know when William Como left and Louis Miele took over, but by the evidence of this issue, it was not a good change. It seemed very bland with nothing exciting. I keep harping on it, but I was so disappointed when I got this issue.The Pirates of Penzance returned to the stage with an all-new cast. Treat Williams and Robby Benson were joined by these wonderful ladies.
Kaye Ballard and Maureen McGovern. Maureen was making her Broadway debut.
Three people featured in their "Faces" section were:
Christopher Welles--a young man who arrived in New York to be an actor and ended up interested in hair styling. His annual Ten Best Tressed list began in 1975 and was still going strong.
Richard Alfieri--he not only starred in the film Echoes with Ruth Roman, Gale Sondergaard and Mercedes McCambridge, but he wrote the screenplay as well.
Monique Van Vooren--the actress known for starring in Andy Warhol's Flesh for Frankenstein started a new career as a novelist. Her first novel Night Sanctuary was published by Summit Books.
A couple of other books hitting the market were Eddie, My Life, My Loves, the autobiography of Eddie Fisher seen above with Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor.
Another book was Limelight and After. This was the memoirs of actress Claire Bloom, seen here with Jeremy Irons in Brideshead Revisisted.
Larry Graham had a published photo essay entitled The Lovers Are Out Today.
George Haddad-Garcia wrote an article featuring Jane Fonda. It seems she had a new workout gym opening up and two films:
On Golden Pond with her father Henry Fonda;
and Rollover with Kris Kristofferson.
International Stud, Fugue in a Nursery, and Widows and Children First! were billed as The Torch Song Trilogy. It's star was the zany Harvey Fierstein.
A two-photo fashion layout (yes I said two--Count them--One--Two) featured sweaters by Bobbie To. They didn't even bother to name the models. Luckily, I recognized one right off the bat. The guy on the left in this first photo went on to star on As the World Turns and many more people will know him from his Rooms to Go commercials. It is Ed Fry looking young and hot.
The guy on the right looks familiar, too. I have thought about it and thought about it, but I can't place the name. This usually means one of two things: A)-He was in some forgettable movie and I thought he was hot. Or B)-He was in some gay porn I've watched and at that point his name wasn't really that important anyway, and would have probably been fake. I can't say for sure, but it has to be one of the two.
Oh yeah, here was the other photo from that awesome (sarcastic) fashion spread.
That's just about it. Well there were some ads for some shows I found of interest.
Sugar Babies with Ann Miller and Mickey Rooney:
Lena Horne: The Lady and Her Music:
Woman of the Year featuring Lauren Bacall:
Key Exchange starring Brooke Adams, Mark Blum and Ben Masters:
One more thing for this post...an ad for the Marlin Beach Hotel. I love they drew a reflection in the sunglasses.
The lack of manflesh this issue was shocking. I knew this issue had that photo of Maxwell Caulfield from my research, so I couldn't wait to see what other beefcake could be found. None. A couple of good looking guys in sweaters. Oh, well, maybe next time. See ya!