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Transgender Music
The Script

Eli Conley - Take It Slow (2013)

This is JD Doyle and welcome to Queer Music Heritage, and it's my 14th Anniversary Show. I'm celebrating by doing another show in a series I love doing, Transgender Music. I've done 14 of these in the past, totaling about 30 hours, and this time I'm adding three more hours, and bringing you a special interview and a whole lot of songs.

My special interview is with an artist I've been following since he released his debut EP in 2011, and now he's recently released his first full album. It's called "At the Seams" and the opening song to this segment was from it, and is called "Take It Slow." He's Eli Conley and I'm delighted to share this interview with you. You'll hear a lot about his music and also a lot about his journey in being a transgender musician.

JD: Eli, How would you describe your musical style, and how has it evolved.

Eli Conley: Hmm, well, I generally use the term Americana as sort of a general thing. I'm a singer-songwriter, and I play acoustic guitar and sing and definitely my vocal style is grounded in folk and country music. So with that said, a lot of the time I find I'm influenced by jazz, by soul, by indie rock music, so there's a lot of other stuff in there, but if I had to say it in a nutshell I'd probably say singer-songwriter Americana.

JD: And, how long have you been singing, performing?

EC: I've been taking myself seriously as a songwriter I would say for about four years, so, not really that long...but definitely as a kid I did a lot of musical theatre, as many queer folks do, as well as I did classical voice lessons when I was younger. I was actually training to be an operatic soprano at one point. So I've had that kind of performing background but actually in terms of performing my own music I really didn't start until toward the end of the time when I was in college.

JD: Your press release says this CD is a set of modern day folk songs for misfits. Can you expand on that?

EC: Sure, yeah, I feel like as somebody who is automatically positioned as an outsider, a queer man, a transgender man, a lot of times the music that I write ends up being for other people who identify as outsiders in one way or another, so when I say that it's folk music for misfits a lot of times I think of the people who I'm writing for as being other queer folks, other folks who are outside the system in one way or another.

JD: I've also read that you've also described your music as "folk with a queer bite."

EC: Yeah, I feel like...I generally say that because if you don't come into my music expecting queer themes you'd be surprised. I often play shows with folks who are, you know, not necessarily LGBTQ-identified and I play plenty of love songs for men. I play songs that definitely have elements of sexuality in them. I like to think of it as I definitely fall within traditional folk in terms of instrumentations, but if you're not ready for that queer side, then you're probably going to be surprised.

JD: I recently produced a benefit CD of mostly transgender artists, and I hand-picked the songs, making the CD kind of a personal favorites CD for me. When I sent the requests out for songs, you were the very first to respond, and I'm so glad to include you.

EC: Yeah, thank you so much. I'm really honored to be asked and to be part of a CD with so many talented transgender artists and artists writing about gender themes.

JD: And for that CD the song I picked from you is "What Is It About Me," could you talk about the song?

EC: Sure, that's a song I wrote maybe three or four years ago now, so it's been a while, and it's definitely one of my favorites to play live. And the song is a little bit of a gotcha song, because it starts out saying...I think the first line is "why don't you do me like you do me when you do me in my dreams." And that's a line that just kind of came to me when I was walking around one day thinking about the person that I was currently kind of casually dating, and how it wasn't living up to the expectations I was hoping for, both in bed and in general. So it was sort of a song that I wrote out of a place of anger and frustration. It was just that kind of thing, like, why do I end up always dating these kind of quiet, shy people when that's not necessarily what I'm actually looking for. And towards the end of the song eventually it comes around and says "well, I'm going to do myself the way I want to be done in my dreams." So it's kind of that twist at the end that if I can't find the person who will give me what I need, and is who I want to be with, then I need to be that person myself.

JD: And the song is "What Is It About Me."

Eli Conley - What is It About Me (2013)

JD: Your CD was a fan-funded one, using Indiegogo, we know it worked as you met your goal, but talk about that process and what you learned from it.

EC: Hmm, you know I feel like it was a very powerful process for me, more than I anticipated going in. Initially I was originally hoping to raise my goal, which was $6750, which as your listeners probably know, is a pretty modest budget for a studio album. So it was my first time going into the studio and I really didn't know if I was going to have the support from my community of friends, fans to be able to raise that much money. And what ultimately happened is I did a lot of outreach both on Facebook, email, in person, and really stepped up to advocating for myself and my music, and asking for people to join me in this new process of making a studio album. And I was overwhelmed by the support that I got from folks. And in particular I got a lot of support from people who I haven't seen for a long time, people who maybe went to high school with me or people who knew me when I was even younger than that, or friends of my family. And it really was the vast majority of people who have some connection with me. And I found this really incredible cause as a singer-songwriter so much of what I mostly me. Whether I'm performing solo or with a group, I'm the one who's doing all the organizing, getting everything together; it's my music that we're performing. And you know, I do that for a reason, my goal is to be in a group led by me, playing my music. But it really felt powerful to have several hundred people supporting me through this project and to feel that I had a community of folks who are launching me into the recording process. And I think that really helped me feel held when I went into it, and also affirms for me that there are a lot of folks out there who want to hear what I do.

JD: Well, in full disclosure, I was one of those who donated. I had your first EP, and I wanted to hear more.

EC: Ah, yeah, well thank you so much. I's always a compliment when somebody who has heard your music before and is from the press wants to keep hearing it.

JD: Tell us about the second song on the album, it's called "Call You Out."

EC: Yeah, well that was actually another song written around the same time as the previous one we talked about, kind of a similar person, that song is about having a crush on somebody and having an idea what they might be like, and saying, "I think I kind of have your number, you're quiet and whatever, but I think I know what's going on with you, and I'm going to follow that hunch." And it's a little bit slinky, it has kind of a bass line groove underneath it, and that one's fun cause on the album I actually sang a higher harmony part along with myself as well, which is always fun, not something I get to do live.

JD: And the song is called "Call You Out."

Eli Conley - Call You Out (2013)

JD: I'd like you to talk a little about how your singing voice changed over the years while taking T, and how you dealt with those challenges.

EC: Sure, yeah, like I said before I am a transgender man, which means I was raised female and when I was in high school I started questioning my gender, questioning whether I identified as a woman, but I didn't yet identify as a male the time I identified as gender queer. And then, over the process of several years I started identifying more as male, but at the was about 2005...there really was not very much information out there about people who took testosterone and were able to continue to sing at a professional level. Everybody at that time I talked to pretty much who had taken testosterone said that they weren't able to sing afterwards or that their voice didn't have the same kind of resonance. And so I actually put off the testosterone for a couple years, because I really wanted to preserve my voice. I was really identified with it, I sang classical music, I sang my own songs and I felt like even though in my day to day life I would like to have a lower speaking voice, more masculine embodiment, the voice was too much of a risk for me to take testosterone and risk losing it.

But ultimately I decided it was something I needed to do, I would see what would happen and trust that I was a singer before, I would find a way to sing afterward. And I'm really thankful that I had the privilege being at a school at that time, Oberlin College, that is in Ohio, that also had a really high level of teachers of music. And I studied with a couple there who were voice majors at the time, so they were also undergraduates, and as my voice was shifting, they just really helped me figure out on any given day what was happening with my voice, you know, shifting repertoire from singing soprano to moving through alto, more as a tenor, and I never quite made it past that. I'm still a high tenor voice, but I'm quite happy with that. So I feel very thankful that I was in a place where I had a lot of support and tools so I could figure out what to do as that shift happened.

And subsequently, it took about two years for my voice to really settle into its final range. I guess I was maybe 22 when that happened; I'm 28 now. So in the intervening years a lot of what my own personal vocal work has been, okay, now that I finally have this fully-changed instrument, what can I do from here? And now, a big part of my day job is that I'm a voice teacher, and some of my favorite work to do is to work with other trans-masculine folks, and transgender folks in general to help them negotiate vocal changes, whether caused by hormones or changes that they just want to make feel more embodied in their voice.

JD: Very briefly, is there any main advice you give them?

EC: Hmm, main advice for folks who are taking testosterone is don't stop singing. That's the number one thing, if folks stop singing they start out with a violin and a year later they have a cello and they try to play it the same way they played the violin and they, and it doesn't work. So I just say, whatever happens sing gently and keep on.

JD: Is the process such that you could take lower doses and do better that way?

EC: Sort, the way that it works is that if you only take a low dose of testosterone your voice will likely change, but not very much, and often other changes that people want from testosterone, l like further physical masculinization won't really happen at a low dose. But what I do recommend to my students who are wanting to transition in the best way for their voice is to start at a low dose and gradually increase it up, to whatever feels right for their body.

JD: One transguy artist I know described it as his voice before didn't seem to match himself, cause the voice he had in his head for how he thought he should sound, wasn't how he sounded.

EC: Yeah, and for me personally I think that was true somewhat for my speaking voice, that I wanted a lower speaking voice, but I was actually really identified with my singing voice. I would have like to have to more octaves on the bottom, but I didn't want to lose the high notes. That was something that even though it would cause people to perceive me as a woman, was still something that artistically, musically I felt really connected to.

JD: Well, one big plus is that six-eight years ago when you were doing it there really wasn't any place to go for the information, and now there is.

EC: Right, totally, and I've actually written a piece on advice for singers because I so often get these questions from folks who are considering transition, so I kind of put my hat into the ring. There's lots and lots of websites with information, there's more academic information, also even antidotally within trans-support groups and groups around the country, more and more of us are out in the music world, so you can actually see models of people who are still singing after testosterone, which I think would have been really powerful for me had I had that at that moment.

JD: Right, right, let's get back to some music. The song "Dry As Sin" must be important to you, as it appears both on the new CD and on your debut EP, talk about that song.

EC: Yeah, so "Dry As Sin" is a song that I wrote to really make connections between what's happening in the part of the country where my family, my dad's side of the family is from in Appalachia, and specifically in Southwest Virginia...basically making the connection between the fact that the coal-mining industry has been declining for years in terms of jobs for people in that area because what's shifted is no longer the mining underground that requires tons and tons of coal miners...which a number of my relatives were in the coal-mining industry, and now what they're doing is mountain-top removal mining, where they blow the tops off mountains. It's much more efficient, quote unquote, for the coal industry because it's faster and doesn't require nearly as many workers.

But obviously coal is not a sustainable resource. It's not something that is going to have long-term benefits for the people...

JD: And then you have a dead mountain where you left it...

EC: Exactly, right, you blow the top off a mountain and it basically is a dead mountain. And at the same time what's being posed as a replacement for that industry in rural areas across the country, including the central valleys of California near where I lived is they're moving in more and more super maximum security prisons, and often the folks who are locked up in Appalachia are people who are not from the mountains, and they are in majority people of color from cities often from the Northeast. And so the song is about really that connection between the decimation of the environment in Appalachia and the decimation of people's lives through the prison system, and also the way that these new jobs that have been created quote unquote for the white working class folks in Appalachia are actually not things that are going to lead to anybody's liberation, I believe.

JD: And the song is called "Dry as Sin."

Eli Conley - Dry As Sin (2013)

JD: And I want to go back to your debut EP for a couple more songs, so please talk about the song "Pinocchio."

EC: Sure, yeah, that song is one that I wrote when I was first trying to figure out what it was going to mean to be a man in the world, honestly. It's when I was early into my transition, and what that song talks starts out, "I'm not a real man, I'll tell you why, it's not the reason you're thinking of." And I'm kind of playing on this idea of people telling transgender people that we're not really who we say we are, when really my belief is that there's no such thing as a real man or a real woman, that this whole idea of some kind of authentic gender is actually just used to police people, and isn't actually a useful concept. So I was kind of trying to play on that and say "you say I'm not a real man, well, I actually don't believe that real manhood exists. It's just that we are who we say we are. I use that Pinocchio metaphor, of Pinocchio becoming a real boy to say that anybody who says that they are a boy is truly a boy. You don't have to have surgery, you don't have to take hormones, you don't have to do anything you don't want to. It's really all about gender self-determination.

Eli Conley - Pinocchio (2011)

JD: And, that was the song "Pinocchio." I hope my listeners all know that gender is not the same thing as orientation, but asking about orientation, I've read that many transmen have the experience of coming out twice, and sometimes first as lesbian. Would you comment on that?

EC: Sure, it's funny, it's like how many times can one person come out. I think often trans people get to do it many, many times in our lives. I did not originally identify as a lesbian personally, but certainly it's true that many transmen do find a home in that community. For myself I identified as a bisexual woman, and I think that term, bisexual, for me I almost used it because I knew that I was attracted to men, and I knew that I was queer in some way and I didn't really have language beyond that. And I knew that I was attracted to women as well, but it became clear to me pretty early on in my life that my primary attraction was to men, but that I definitely was not a straight woman. It's a little bit of a conundrum when, you know, when you're not really aware of the existence of transgender people yet. And over time for myself I started claiming sort of a more fluid identity in terms of sexuality, using the word "queer" because it just felt easier than having to explain what I meant. Because if somebody didn't know what gender I was necessarily it would be challenging to even explain what something like gay or straight meant. And these days I identify more as a gay man, because now that I occupy a male role in my everyday life my primary relationships romantically are with other men. That feels the most descriptive. So with that said I still am not super attached to these...these specific categories. I use queer and gay for my sexuality pretty interchangeably.

JD: Again, with the EP...I love to explore the history with artists...the title track of the EP was very folky. Talk about "All the Livelong Day"

EC: Yeah, that's a fun song, for folks listening to this show, I imagine, it's a love story between two queer men in the South, and it's about the difficulty of their relationship, in a sense. It uses traditional folky language and sort of traditional country language to talk about their relationship. And then ultimately towards the end of it, one of the people in the relationship wants to leave the rural area where they are. And the other guy says basically that "I really care about my connection to my family, I care about the land here, I don't really want to leave, I don't want to marry you, that's not something that I'm interested in, I want to stay here." And it's hard to figure out...the chorus is about it's hard to figure out how to stay where you're from, stay in a relationship to your family and also stay true to yourself. And I think for's a fictional story...but I'm somebody didn't stay in the rural area, in Virginia where I grew up, I did leave. So that's something that I'm constantly grappling with both in my current work and my past work and that kind of idea that what does it mean to leave, what does it mean to stay, how do we be our full selves and also keep connected to where we're from.

JD: Give us the title of that song again.

EC: Sure, it's "All the Livelong Day."

Eli Conley - All the Livelong Day (2011)
Eli Conley - We Will Rise (2011)

JD: The EP is called "All the Livelong Day," and in addition to the title track you also heard "We Will Rise." Coming from the new release, the song "Now I'm Doing Me" sounds like there's a story behind it.

EC: Yup, so that song is definitely one that is close to my actual experience. It's a break-up song and it's funny, I actually didn't realize when I was writing it the double entendre of the title. This is kind of a pattern for me, I write things and then find out later from an audience member or someone that it could be sexual. But that song is about a relationship that ended that I felt like the person was asking for me back after the relationship ended, and it wasn't something I was interested in anymore. So it was kind of speaking to him through song cause I didn't feel like I could speak to him in person. And then the chorus, "now I'm doing me," is really about, you know what, I don't have time for this anymore, this isn't something that I want to do, I'm going to focus on myself, and the other implication of that applies as well.

Eli Conley - Now I'm Doing Me (2013)

JD: And you just heard "Now I'm Doing Me." Coming up next, in the song "I Found You" you are definitely singing about a man.

EC: (laughs) That's true, yeah, "I Found You" is a love song, kind of more jazzy soulful, and that's a song that I wrote when I was in a really happy relationship with another man, and was excited about it. It's funny, I actually got a chance to play that at a commitment ceremony, I guess it was a marriage ceremony for some friends recently, who are a male-female couple but they are queer, and so I changed some of the language so it wouldn't be explicitly me singing to a man, but in the original version that's definitely what's intended.

Eli Conley - I Found You (2013)

JD: A question I like to ask trans guys is that in your transition have you experience achieving male privilege and what are your observations on that?

EC: Hmm, yeah, I think absolutely there's no way...there's no way for me personally for me to be seen as a man in the world and not have that be connected to people giving me male privilege. And I say people giving me male privilege...I think it's also that in some sense we have a choice how to respond to that. Because now if somebody is positioned in the world as a man, and as somebody who's a white man and as somebody who was raised upper middle class...already as an upper middle class white queer woman I certainly had a lot of privilege. I had access to private schooling. I had access to lots of musical education growing up, which is something that really benefited me. And I think it's important to think about privilege in terms of this term,, what are our privileges, what are the ways that we are oppressed. And I think often people who are gay or queer tend to make the mistake of thinking that because we experience oppression, as non-straight people, we therefore don't experience privilege in other ways.

But for me, you know, I was always a masculine...quote unquote...masculine person perceived when I was female so definitely people were sexist toward me, certainly, and I think it was also different from the ways that people respond to femme and more feminine people. And now as someone who is seen as more gender some sense, I'm still very faggy...but I'm seen as a man who fits to the male role in a lot of ways. There's lots of ways that, for instance, if I'm walking down the street and I pass another man, you get the head nod, or whatever it is. It's a very different kind of response than the appraisal I used to get as someone who is perceived to be a woman. And that's just one example among many. And for me one thing that's important about someone who occupies the world as a man now, is to really believe in and support and to advocate for feminist politics. So that's the majority of the folks that I'm in social relationships with are queer women. I think so often what happens for people who are male is that they discount the words of women, don't take them seriously, don't take time to understand what women's oppression looks like, and particular for me, also what transwomen's oppression looks like.

JD: I like to ask about male privilege because I'm constantly, and I shouldn't be, but I'm constantly surprised how many people don't know the term, or even ever gave it a thought.

EC: Yeah, and I think that's kind of the truth about all different kinds of privilege, right, for example, white privilege. Often if you're a white person that's not something that you've ever had to think about, know, in my life I don't get followed around in stores, or people assume that I speak English, and am a citizen, and band-aids in a store are the color of my skin...all these kinds of things that you wouldn't necessarily notice if you weren't in a relationship with people who did not have that kind of privilege.

JD: Living in Houston I've gotten used to not assuming a person I'm about to say something to speaks English.

EC: Yeah, and I think that is a really good assumption, you know, I think often it is important to question who we assume what about, just keeping an open mind. That applies to gender, that applies to sexuality, language, all these things. I'm really in favor of just coming to each person with an open mind, and not making assumptions about who they are based on what they look like.

JD: Well, we heard about your show politics, is there an overall message to your music?

EC: Hmm, that's a good question. I certainly don't sit down to write a song and think, ah, how does it fit with my manifesto. The message I would like people to take away from my music is that another world is possible, that we absolutely can create more space in the world for more kinds of people. I hope people feel inspired by my music to take whatever action it is in their daily lives to move us towards a kind of space that is libratory for all of us.

This is JD Doyle for Queer Music Heritage and I've got one more question for Eli, but I want to remind that there's much more music by transgender artists in additional parts of this show, found online at, and I hope you'll check out more on Eli at

JD: We're down to the last question. I think a nice closing song for this segment will be the story song "When God Sets His Sights on You." Would you tell us about what inspired that.

EC: This is a song about a young queer woman in the South, who is realizing she's queer and comes out to her mom, and her mom, who's conservative and Christian has a negative response right up front. And they have a hard moment and part of it is about this relationship with God, and how does God see queer people. And ultimately the young woman runs away. But I don't want to frame it as that's the answer. I saw it more as maybe she didn't wait long enough to actually figure this out with her mom and have her mom come around. But it was inspired by two things. I went to the Frameline Film Festival in San Francisco last year, which was an LGBT film festival, and I saw a film about very young people organizing in Mississippi to have, I believe it was the first queer youth conference, that was going to be Mississippi-wide...and just talking about all the different areas that they faced in doing that. And that really opened my eyes, cause I felt that even though I'm a young person who grew up queer in the South, I was raised in a bigger city, I had liberal parents. It was not the same as growing up in the Bible Belt. So that was a song that I wrote reflecting on that experience, and also thinking about the experience of a number of friends of mine growing up. I had two friends who were in a secret relationship, two women, and they were both Southern Baptists, and one of their father's was a preacher. And it was just kind of thinking about what might have happened if one of them had come out at that time as well.

JD: Again, you are listening to Queer Music Heritage. This is JD Doyle and that was Eli Conley and his closing song is "When God Sets His Sights on You."

Eli Conley - When God Sets His Sights on You (2013)


Shondes - Running Out of Time / The Garden (2013)

This is JD Doyle and welcome to Part 2 of my Transgender Music Special, and like I said starting off Part 1, this is my 14th anniversary show and also my 15th special on the music of Transgender Artists. Starting off this segment is a band I love, and I interviewed them last January. They are The Shondes and they released a new album this year called "The Garden." You just heard from it the title track, preceded by "Running Out of Time."

This year I accomplished kind of a personal goal, to produce a CD. It's a benefit CD with all the proceeds going to the building fund for the Transgender Foundation of Houston. When I heard about their project I got the idea to produce a transgender-themed CD, and it turned out much better than I could have hoped. I got 21 artists to donate songs I hand-picked, so these were my favorites. The CD is called "House Blend," because the proceeds are for a house and it's a blend of artists and genres. Eli Conley, who you heard on Part 1 gave me a song, and The Shondes contributed their song "The Garden" and here are two more from the CD. I was thrilled that Namoli Brennet contributed an unreleased live track of one of my favorites by her, called "Boy in a Dress."

Namoli Brennett - Boy in a Dress (live, 2009)
Kate Reid - Boys Who Wear Dresses (2013)

That artist is not a transgender musician, but I'm glad I got her to contribute her song "Boys Who Wear Dresses." She's Kate Reid and the song is from her CD "Queer Across Canada," and is inspired by a young boy she knew. Up next, another band from the benefit CD, from Brooklyn it's Schmekel, and you can find an interview with them on my show from January 2013. They've got a new CD, and they contributed to my project the song "Gay Shame," and you'll also hear two more by them, called "FTM at the DMV" and "Gender Queer Love Song." Even the titles tell you they are a bit political, and I love that.

Schmekel - Gay Shame / FTM at the DMV / Gender Queer Love Song (2013)

Again, that was the band Schmekel, all from their new CD "The Whale That Ate Jonah." Coming up are two very different tracks by the Athens Boys Choir, which is really a solo act, named Katz, who I've played often on my shows. His new CD is called "Heartstrings and Hamstrings" and the tracks are "The Tenth Letter" and "Pie and Passion."

Athens Boys Choir - The Tenth Letter / Pie and Passion (2013)
Animal Prufrock - Cosmic Tranny / Liberation (2010)
Tribe 8 - Tranny Chaser (1996)

Those tracks right after the Athens Boys Choir were "Cosmic Tranny" and "Liberation" and were by Animal Prufrock, who a while back was half of the duo Bitch & Animal. The solo CD, from 2010, was called "Congratulations, Thank You, & I'm Sorry." And closing that set was Tribe 8, from way back in 1996, and that band was led by now transman Lynne Breedlove. What to follow that with? How about Canadian Rae Spoon and the title track from the CD "I Can't Keep All of Our Secrets."

Rae Spoon - I Can't Keep All of Our Secrets (2012)
Justin Vivian Bond - Lesson in Survival (2012)
Justin Vivian Bond - Talkin' About a Revolution (2012)

After Rae Spoon you heard two tracks from the 2012 album "Silver Wells," by Justin Vivian Bond. They were called "Lesson in Survival" and "Talkin' About a Revolution."

It's not often when you get to meet a young artist before they've recorded anything, but that happened to me in June of 2012 when I was in San Francisco for Pride. I went to the Trans March celebration and ran into my artist friend Joe Stevens, who introduced me to Ben Wallace and told me he would be producing Ben's first album, and that happened, and Joe also added some of his own backups to it. The album is called "Real Boy #1" and I picked the song "Land of Opportune."

Ben Wallace - Land of Opportune (2013)

This is JD Doyle and this has been Part 2 of my Transgender Music Special. There's one more hour to come and I'm closing this one with some music more in a dance mode, by Scandelle, whose latest project is called "Confessions of a Trannie Rockstar." The songs are called "Genderswag" and "Halfway to Dawn."

Scandelle - Genderswag / Halfway to Dawn (2013)

This is JD Doyle and here's Part 3 of my Transgender Music Special, starting with a song with openly trans lyrics. It's by the band Against Me and their lead singer Laura Jane Grace. I can't wait to hear their upcoming album "Transgender Dysphoria Blues," scheduled for release late this month, but for now we'll have to be patient with two songs from it, "True Trans Soul Rebel," and one with the radio-unfriendly title, but not lyrics, called "Fuck My Life 666."

Against Me - True Trans Soul Rebel / Fuck My Life 666 (2013)

Let's go to the disco, with Foxx Jazell, and her song "Elevation."

Foxx Jazell - Elevation (2013)
Lime - Your Love (1981)

And those who went dancing in the early 80s will remember that last song, a disco hit in 1981 from the act named Lime. Now, Lime was a Canadian husband and wife act, Denis and Denyse LePage. They later divorced and Denis is now transsexual, which is what gets her music on this show. She's been doing limited releases under the name Nini Nobless. There are a couple tracks on her YouTube channel, including this one from 2011, called "Your Love Set Me Free / Never Let You Go."

Nini NoBless - Your Love Set Me Free / Never Let You Go (2011)

And I recently found out that this next artist qualified for this show. And by "qualified" I mean that to get on my radio shows you can be a straight person singing about something gay, or, 99% of the time, you have to be an openly GLBT artist. Here's the discovery. How many of you have seen the film "Rocky Horror Picture Show"? Raise your hands. Okay, that's pretty much all of you, so remember the character Riff Raff. He was really Richard O'Brien, who wrote the book, music and lyrics for the whole show, and should be a zillionaire by now. Well, in an article about him last Spring he revealed he's been taking the hormone estrogen for about ten years. He said he doesn't plan on any surgery, and is happy with where he now falls on the gender spectrum, which he says is about 70% male and 30% female. That works for me, he gets on this show. I found a 1999 album by him called "Absolute O'Brien" and here are two tracks from it, "Rhythm of the Heartbeat," and "Running With the Noisy Boys."

Richard O'Brien - Rhythm of the Heartbeat (1999)
Richard O'Brien - Running With the Noisy Boys (1999)
Beth Isbell - In This Moment (2013)

That artist was Beth Isbell, and from her new album "We Are the Gods," that was "In This Moment."
Frances McKevitt is a UK artist and here's a song by her called "You."

Frances McKevitt - You (2013)
Cidny Bullens - Everywhere and Nowhere (2010)
Cidny Bullens - Love Gone Good (2010)

After Frances McKevitt I played Cidny Bullens, well, I guess you could say I played Cindy Bullens. She's been making music for decades and from her 2010 album "Howling Trains and Barking Dogs" I chose the tracks "Everywhere and Nowhere" and "Love Gone Good." I did a mini-feature on her in 2011 and played songs going back to 1978, but since that show, well, she transitioned, and switched her first name from Cindy to Cidny, so I am looking forward to what he releases under the new name.

Let's bring down the beat a little, starting with Sissy Debut and a new track called "Blind Foolish Love."

Sissy Debut - Blind Foolish Love (2013)
Kokumo - Mad Love (2013)

And that was a new artist, Kokumo, doing a very nice cover of the song "Mad Love."

This is JD Doyle and I thank you for helping me celebrate my 14th anniversary show and 15th Transgender Music Special. I'm going out with a bang, and in this case that means some high energy from Lucas Silviera and the band The Cliks. From their latest CD "Black Tie Elevator" are the tracks "Stop Drinking My Wine" and "Savanna."

The Cliks - Stop Drinking My Wine / Savanna (2013)