If you're under the age of 45, you've probably never heard of the flamboyant glam-rocker Jobriath, but in the mid 70s, he was expected to be bigger than Bowie, and his name and image were plastered all over buses, billboards, and national music magazines. At a time when rockers were flirting with ambiguously gay facades (Bowie, Lou Reed, Elton John, etc.) Jobriath called himself a "true fairy" in the press and was cited by critics to be the next big thing.
Luckily, director Kieran Turner has made a documentary about the life, commercial failure, and tragic death of the singer (who died of AIDS in 1983 in relative obscurity) titled Jobriath A.D. It explores the life and times of the first openly gay rock star signed to a major label, and how the hype machine wrecked his career. Recently, longtime fan Morrissey helped to re- release Jobriath's first record, and Henry Rollins narrates this doc. To say that Jobriath was ahead of his time is an understatement--he's the blueprint for just about every over-the-top pop star since him. The movie's premiering Saturday April 14th at the Florida Film Festival, so check it out if you're in the area. Hopefully, it'll see a wider release in the US soon.
You can check out the trailer here, and some other Jobriath vids, below.
The opinions expressed on the BUST blog are those of the authors themselves and do not necessarily reflect the position of BUST Magazine or its staff.
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