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The Glaring Omission On Billboard’s “Top 50 Gay Anthems Of All Time” Playlist

by Derek de Koff June 24, 2016


Ke$ha. Pet Shop Boys. The Village People. ABBA.

Perhaps Billboard editors didn’t go reaching too deep into the music vaults and milk crates to scrounge up the choices for their list “50 Top Gay Anthems To Celebrate LGBT Pride Month,” compiled just in time for Pride. We get Bronski Beat (“Smalltown Boy”); Cheryl Lynn (“Got To Be Real”); Erasure (“A Little Respect”); George Michael (“Freedom! ’90”); and Gloria Gaynor (“I Will Survive”.) There’s even some Madonna song called “Vogue.”

Related: Ten Great Gay Love Songs To Crack The Toughest Cynic

Unfortunately, the list only scratches the surface and doesn’t reveal too many songs you wouldn’t already hear picking up witch hazel at CVS. One glaring omission: Rod Stewart’s “The Killing of George (Part I and II)”, a surprise hit (now rather forgotten) that tells the story of a gay man who moves to New York, becomes “the toast of The Great White Way,” and then is murdered one night on 5th Avenue by Jersey street thugs. Discussing the song with Mojo in 1995, Stewart says, “That was a true story about a gay friend of the Faces. He was especially close to me and Mac.”

Listening to the lyrics, it’s hard to believe this was ever played on mainstream radio, let alone in 1976:

Are there any anthemic songs you think should have been included on the list? Leave your suggestions in the comments below. 

Derek de Koff
Derek de Koff


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