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Cher-palooza continues: “Daybreak” interview

Cher is everywhere right now because her new album – the first in more than a decade – came out today! She will be on The Late Show With David Letterman tonight so will post that tomorrow.

(If you’re sick of Cher, don’t tell me. It won’t stop me – let me ride this out, enjoy this. She makes me happy – always has. Gay guys past 40 understand)

This chat from a few weeks ago is from a show called Daybreak and I like its relaxed quality. It’s also cool to hear talk about her days as a background singer and that the last song she ever did back-up on was The Righteous Brothers classic You’ve Lost That Loving Feeling.

We also find out how Cher does not like all the Instagram and Facebook photos of her that get posted so quickly anytime she goes out. She says it’s the ‘one thing’ she doesn’t like about her job.


Elton John on Liberace: “He was a huge influence on me. He was being who he was”

There have been many criticisms of Sunday night’s Emmy Awards telecast and, among them, were folks who felt that Elton John’s performance was more of about promoting his latest album than paying tribute to the late Liberace.

But in an interview with NPR, Elton talks about the influence Liberace had on him – a fellow gay performer who played the piano and had a penchant for outrageous costumes:

“He was so charming and so lovely and very, very funny and very, very intelligent. And he was a huge influence on me. He was being who he was — he wasn’t publicly out — but he didn’t give a flying monkey about what he was wearing; he just went for it. And that was who he was. That, of course, influenced me, when I started wearing the clothes and I subconsciously must’ve [thought], ‘If you’re stuck at a piano and you’re not a lead guitarist or a lead vocalist, you’re kind of at a nine-foot plank and you’ve got to do something about it.’ So my thing was to leap on piano, do handstands and wear clothes that would draw attention to me because that’s the focus for two and half hours. I’m not walking around the stage; I’m not moving. So [Liberace] gave me that idea, probably subconsciously, because before then I had never seen anyone dress like that.

“All my stuff was firmly tongue-in-cheek. I wasn’t a heartthrob [like] David Bowie or Mick Jagger or Rod Stewart in those days. I was Elton at the piano. I had to turn the attention to something comedic or even more outrageous than it was.”


Lunch Break Video: Chandler Massey & Casey Deidrick put own spin on “Escape” by Enrique Iglesias

We’re used to seeing these two handsome guys as Will Horton and Chad DiMera, respectively, on NBC’s Days of Our Lives.

But both Chandler Massey and Casey Deidrick have left the show – thankfully they are still on since episodes are filmed roughly three months ahead – so it’s fun to see them out of character in this video.

Someone just sent it to me and though it’s been up on YouTube since June, I had not see it. It’s a fun video to the Enrique Iglesias song Escape and I love seeing Chandler let loose and show us what great dance moves he has. As for Casey, whose hair I’m obsessed with, he just looks dreamy throughout.


Happy Birthday to Ross Mathews!

Wishing a happy 34th birthday to the delightful Ross Mathews.

We first got to know him as Ross the Intern on The Tonight Show and he has just blossomed before our eyes.

Ross has worked hard and early on became a contributing correspondent on The Insider and hosted a web show with The Insider called Inside Dish With Ross Mathews. He also did a web show in connection with The Tonight Show for awhile.

Then a really big break came when he began appearing regularly as a panelist on Chelsea Lately and became a part of the E! red carpet team.

This has been the biggest year yet for Ross as he has released the book Man Up! Tales of My Delusional Self-Confidance and this month launched his own weekly talk show Hello Ross.

Here are clips from Ross paying a visit this year to The Tonight Show not as a correspondent, but as a guest.

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Tuesday Morning Man: Derek Hough!

I featured Derek Hough as a Morning Man four years ago after meeting him at the Creative Arts Emmys.

He didn’t win that year but this year he did so I thought this would be a good time for an update.

Derek, a longtime pro on ABC’s Dancing With the Stars, has only gotten more handsome since then and is the show’s only four-time champion.

His partner this season is Amber Riley of Glee fame.

At 28, Derek has accomplished so much including theater. He was Ren in the 2006 original cast production of Footloose: The Musical at the Novelo Theatre in London’s West End, as well as on the 2006 UK national tour.

FILE UNDER: Morning Men - 2013

Filmmaker Lee Daniels was “sort of happy” when the dad who beat him for being gay died

Lee Daniels, director of Precious and The Butler, recently did an interview with KCRW and shared how an abusive father shaped his childhood and his work as a filmmaker.

“I ran from that for such a long time – my identity – because I was beaten for it, and then my dad died and I was sort of happy that he did because I dunno that I would have been alive, he’d just kept beating me for being gay.”

“So my mom didn’t want me around cause then… in the African American community we don’t embrace that [being gay]. You know, we simply don’t because men have to be strong and being gay is not a good thing.”

“And so my mom took me to an all-white school… at that point I went from being ‘gay, gay, gay’ to ‘n—er, n—er, n—er.’ …It’s a very, very, very painful experience to live and I try to show that in all of my work, you know, the personal atrocities that I’ve lived.”

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Lance Bass would lie to help gay friend stay closeted: “I will support any decision they make”

video platformvideo managementvideo solutionsvideo player
Lance Bass guested on Bethenny Frankel’s daytime talk show today and gave some interesting answers to a series of questions during a backstage segment.

Lance was asked if he’d ever twerk (he doesn’t think he’d be any good at it), if he’d ever pose nude (just the backside) and if he’d ever consider eloping (yed!).

But the answer that is getting most of the attention is what Lance said when he was asked: ‘Would you ever lie to help a closeted celebrity stay closeted?’

Lance, who announced his engagement earlier this month, replied: ‘Yes, I would and I have.’

‘I know tons of celebrities that are in the closet right now,’ he added. ‘But it’s up to them to decide if they want to come out or not. And I will support any decision they make.’


Lunch Break Videos: Some nice Neil Patrick Harris moments during a very flawed 2013 Emmys telecast

Neil Patrick Harris is one talented dude and a fabulous awards show host but last night was not his or Emmys finest hour.

I’m still stunned at how the winners, some giving heartfelt speeches, were given the bum’s rush off the stage with intrusive music while there was all the time in the world for tributes to Jean Stapleton et al, performances by Elton John and Carrie Underwood (huh?) and a tribute to 1963 that had 1950s I Love Lucy clips and a Beatles song released in 1965.

And please, don’t get me started on Shemar Moore and that backstage nonsense. He’s a handsome man but Dick Clark he is not.

The hashtag #weirdemmys was popular on Twitter last night for a reason.

NPH tweeted this today: ‘Emceeing the Emmys was fun, but I’m sure glad it’s over. Looking forward to not hosting anything for a long time.’

I still love NPH, hope he’s not too discouraged by the way things went, and returns better than ever when he is ready to host again.

Here are some of his highlights from last night’s very flawed show:

Cher-palooza! Icon announces “Dressed to Kill” tour dates, performs on “The Today Show”

It’s all about Cher right now and that is just fine with me!

The living legend appeared on NBC’s The Today Show this morning to perform a trio of songs including her catchy latest single Woman’s World.

Cher is in New York this week celebrating the release of her first album in forever – Closer to the Truth – which comes out Tuesday but I’ve already listened to online. Love it!

She will appear on The Late Show With David Letterman tomorrow then on Live! with Kelly & Michael on October 1. Cher will also be appearing as a mentor with Blake Shelton on NBC’s The Voice airing in October.

Here is video from The Today Show:


Sat, March 22 Phoenix, AZ US Airways Center

*Mon, March 24 Houston, TX Toyota Center

*Wed, March 26 Dallas, TX American Airlines Center

Fri, March 28 Little Rock, AR Verizon Arena

Sat, March 29 Tulsa, OK BOK Center

Mon, March 31 Nashville, TN Bridgestone Arena

Wed, April 2 Pittsburgh, PA Consol Energy Center

*Fri, April 4 Washington DC Verizon Center

Sat, April 5 Uncasville, CT Mohegan Sun

Mon, April 7 Toronto, ON Air Canada Centre

Wed, April 9 Boston, MA TD Garden

Fri, April 11 Indianapolis, IN Bankers Life Fieldhouse

Sat, April 12 Detroit, MI Joe Louis Arena

Wed, April 23 Buffalo, NY First Niagara Center

Fri, April 25 Montreal, QC Bell Center

Sat, April 26 Ottawa, ON Canada Tire Centre

*Mon, April 28 Philadelphia, PA Wells Fargo Center

Wed, April 30 Columbus, OH Nationwide Arena

Fri, May 2 Cleveland, OH Quicken Loans Arena

Mon, May 5 Charlotte, NC Times Warner Cable Arena

Wed, May 7 Raleigh, NC PNC Arena

*Fri, May 9 Brooklyn, NY Barclays Center

*Sat, May 10 East Rutherford, NJ Izod Center

*Mon, May 12 Atlanta, GA Philips Arena

Wed, May 14 Jacksonville, FL Veterans Memorial Arena

Fri, May 16 Orlando, FL Amway Center

Sat, May 17 Ft. Lauderdale, FL BB&T Center

Sun, May 25 Las Vegas, NV MGM Grand

Wed, May 28 Denver, CO Pepsi Center

Fri, May 30 Lincoln, NE Pinnacle Bank Arena

Sat, May 31 Kansas City, MO Sprint Center

Mon, June 2 Louisville, KY KFC Yum! Center

Wed, June 4 St. Louis, MO Scottrade Center

Fri, June 6 Milwaukee, WI BMO Harris Bradley Center

Sat, June 7 Chicago, IL Allstate Arena

Mon, June 9 Des Moines, IA Wells Fargo Arena

Wed, June 11 Minneapolis, MN Target Center

Fri, June 20 Winnipeg, MB MTS Centre

Sat, June 21 Saskatoon, SK Credit Union Centre

Mon, June 23 Edmonton, AB Rexall Place

Wed, June 25 Calgary, AB Scotiabank Saddledome

Fri, June 27 Vancouver, BC Rogers Arena

*Sat, June 28 Seattle, WA Key Arena

Mon, June 30 Portland, OR Moda Center

*Wed, July 2 San Jose, CA SAP Center at San Jose

Sat, July 5 Ontario, CA Citizens Business Bank Arena

*Mon, July 7 Los Angeles, CA Staples Center

*Wed, July 9 Anaheim, CA Honda Center

Fri, July 11 San Diego, CA Valley View Casino Center


Video: See Cher on “CBS This Morning”

This is a really nice piece on Cher that aired yesterday on CBS Sunday Morning. It’s a good interview in which she is relaxed and candid as ever and looks terrific. She and her mom, Georgia Holt return to Grauman’s Chinese Theatre at one point, good use of archival footage (Cher with Elton John and Bette Midler in an old folks home!) and Cher’s wonderful response to being snubbed by the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame: “Fuck ‘em.”

Cher talks about turning down the chance to perform at the Winter Olympics in Russia where there are anti-gay laws.

“You can’t cross that line – the gay line. You just can’t. My gay following has kept me – in the old days – alive when no one else came to see me. I’ve had really bad times.’

On Chaz’s transition: ‘I was so afraid of losing someone. But Chaz is the same person. I was just thinking, “Where is that child going to go? What’s going to happen? How is this going to work?” In the transition part, it’s difficult.’

Although she sometimes still slips on the ‘he’ and ‘she’ pronouns she says of Chaz: ‘He’s definitely a man.’


Monday Morning Man: Travis Wall!

Okay, so Travis Wall lost the choreography Emmy last night to Derek Hough but the upside is he gets to be a Greg In Hollywood Morning Man today!

Travis, 26, was runner-up on the second season of So You Think You Can Dance and went on to become a choreographer on the show.

In 2012, he starred in the reality show All The Right Moves on Oxygen, where he, Teddy Forance, Nick Lazzarini and Kyle Robinson attempt to launch their own dance company called Shaping Sound.

Travis is openly gay – not sure if he is single!

FILE UNDER: Morning Men - 2013

Michael Douglas wins Emmy for “Candelabra”

Behind the Candelabra, an HBO biopic about the romance between Liberace and Scott Thorson, added three more Emmys to its haul taking the awards for best movie/miniseries, best director (Steven Soderbergh) and a best actor prize for Michael Douglas.

Douglas thanked his wife Catherine Zeta-Jones who he is reportedly separated from (she was not at the ceremony) and his oldest son Cameron Douglas who is in prison serving time for a drug conviction.

Douglas got a big laugh with some innuendo during his speech during which he said to co-star and fellow nominee Matt Damon: “This was a two hander – and you’re only as good as your other hand. The only reason I’m standing here is because of you. You deserve half of this. Do You want the bottom or the top? The top? I figured that.”


James Parsons wins third Emmy!!!

Congrats to Jim Parsons who has just won his third Emmy for best actor in a comedy series.

He beat out Alec Baldwin, among others, for the big award and said in part: “I want you to know I’m very aware about how exceedingly fortunate I am … to be able to do this role and this show.”

“It’s so silly to be emotional, isn’t it?

Parsons ended his speech by thanking longtime boyfriend Todd Spiewak who he called his ‘favorite person on the planet.’

In addition to Baldwin, Parsons also beat out Jason Bateman for Arrested Development, Matt LeBlanc for Episodes, Don Cheadle for House of Lies, and Louis C.K. for Louie.


Showtune Sunday: Relive some memorable musical numbers from past Emmy Award telecasts

Neil Patrick Harris, tonight’s Emmy host, has said in interviews that he’s not going to have a big musical opening this year.

Not sure what he has in mind but I do know that he killed it in his previous hosting stint with a number about not touching the remote – how did he remember all the words to that song?

Jane Lynch also did well in her musical opening the year she hosted.

But the most stupendous Emmy opening number that I can recall came in 2010 when Jimmy Fallon hosted and with the help of Glee cast members (including the late Cory Monteith) plus Tina Fey, Jon Hamm and others, he led a rockin’ Born to Run.

Check that and the others out!

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Gays to root for at tonight’s Emmy Awards

Michael Douglas and Matt Damon aren’t gay but they are honorary gays today – 2013 Emmy day – because they are nominated for their outstanding performances as Liberace and Scott Thorson, respectively, in Behind the Candelabra.

The HBO movie has already won 8 Emmys and can add more tonight. Douglas is a shoo-in (sorry Matt) and Scott Bakula is up for supporting actor and the film could also win for best miniseries or movie and best writing.

Real-life gays up for Emmys tonight (at least the ones who are out publicly):
Zachary Quinto and Sarah Paulson for American Horror Story: Asylum, Jim Parsons for The Big Bang Theory, Jesse Tyler Ferguson for Modern Family, Jane Lynch for Glee, Jonathan Benjamin Hickey for The Big C, Ryan Murphy as a producer of American Horror Story, and Paris Barclay for outstanding director of a comedy series for Glee.

Gays who received Emmys at last weekend’s Creative Arts Emmys ceremony were Dan Bucatinsky for Scandal, Tim Gunn for Project Runway, Lily Tomlin for outstanding voiceover performance for Apology to Elephants, and Neil Patrick Harris as one of the producers of the Tony Awards.

All this plus Neil Patrick Harris as tonight’s host!


Morning Man Classic: Michael Landon!

He starred for 14 seasons on Bonanza, for 8 years on Little House on the Prairie and 5 on Highway to Heaven.

Through it all, Michael Landon was just as handsome as can be.

But I liked him best as Joe Cartwright on Bonanza with his hair a bit shorter to better showcase that handsome face.

Sadly, Michael was just 54 when he died of cancer in 1991 as he was about to begin work on yet another new TV series.

FILE UNDER: Morning Men - 2013

Videos: Memorable Emmy speeches from Elaine Stritch, Barbara Stanwyck and Meryl Streep

Thought I’d get us in the mood for tomorrow’s Emmys by reliving a trio of memorable speeches from years past.

I’m hoping we get another few classic ones this year instead of an annoying list of names. These three are original and thoughtful and in Elaine Stritch’s case, absolutely hilarious!



Video: Valerie Harper inspires with a solid Fox Trot on week one of “Dancing With the Stars”

Just caught up with Dancing With the Stars which I am most interested in because of the participation of the amazing Valerie Harper.

She was given a death sentence at the start of the year so it’s so deeply inspiring to see her still here and thriving. I love it!

“It’s good to be alive,” Valerie said after first dance with partner Tristan MacManus. “And it’s even better to be dancing.”


Robert Redford considers it to be ‘un-American’ to discriminate against gay people

Screen icon Robert Redford is making clear that he supports gay marriage and wants it to become legal in Utah where he holds his annual Sundance Film Festival.

‘I’m here for the same reason you are – equal rights for all,’ Redford said this week at an event for Equality Utah, the state’s largest LGBT rights advocacy group.

‘Like you, I believe there’s no place in our world for discrimination. None. I think it is un-American,’ he said. ‘If we change discriminatory laws in Utah, it sets a benchmark for people in other states; it allows people to see what can be done.’

‘Utah is changing,’ Redford added. ‘There are good people in Utah. More people want to change the discriminatory laws than want to keep them.People should be able to marry whomever they love.’

Redford is the Oscar winning director of Ordinary People and the star of such classic films as The Sting, Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, The Way We Were, All the Presidents Men and Three Days of the Condor.

His more recent movies include The Horse Whisperer, The Clearing, Lions for Lambs and the upcoming All is Lost.


Celeb Tweets: Billie Jean King Edition

Today is the 40th anniversary of the Battle of the Sexes match between the great Billie Jean King and the late Bobby Riggs.

King beat Riggs in three straight sets at the Houston Astrodome and cemented herself as one of the great feminist heroes.

Of course, this was just one match and very symbolic. But her greatest achievements lie in founding the women’s tennis tour, creating a union, fighting for equal prize money and winning a record 20 titles at Wimbledon in singles and doubles.

Some of her famous admirers paid tribute on Twitter today:
Chris Evert ‏@ChrissieEvert 18m She is a woman who will forever be known for her vision, her leadership, her extraordinary sense of fairness…@BillieJeanKing
Jimmy Connors ‏@JimmyConnors Bobby Riggs/ Billie Jean King battle of sexes 40 yrs ago in Houston. Memorable– a day in sports history.

Diana Nyad ‏@diananyad Sending trailblazer @BillieJeanKing big appreciation today! 40th Anniversary #KingRiggs40
Elton John ‏@eltonjohndotcom Happy 40th anniversary to @BillieJeanKing on her historic win over Bobby Riggs in the Battles of the Sexes! #KingRiggs40

Tracy Austin ‏@thetracyaustin Happy 40th Anniversary to @BillieJeanKing for her win over Bobby Riggs!Remember it well! Huge impact on generations. #inspirational

Martina Navratilova ‏@Martina 40 years ago today Billie Jean King wiped Bobby Riggs off the Houston Astrodome floor- congrats!!!

Pam Shriver ‏@PHShriver 40 years ago @BillieJeanKing #KingRiggs40 played their match. BJK was just 30 yrs of age & juggled so much so well & still does AMAZING

Billie Jean King ‏@BillieJeanKing Thank you to everyone for your wonderful messages, stories and support. I am humbled. #KingRiggs40

FILE UNDER: Celeb Tweets, Icons