If you want actual information on queercore, I'd suggest checking out my Queer Bands on Tour page.

Cloning Queercore

If Queercore is to become widely, wildly popular, it is necessary for it to become more easily understood. As it is now, there are too many kinds of music, styles of dress, and cultural differences within queercore.

Gay movements are most successful when they are based around a "clone" image. A simple prototype may be adopted by a large group of people. Think of the mustachioed clone look of the 70's, the sandaled "granola dyke" archetype of the same decade, the shave-headed, clean-shaven or goateed, rolled-up-jeans shorts "new clone" of the late 80's, the simultaneous "lipstick lesbian" look, and the bearded, hairy, chubby bear look so popular today.

Let us design a queercore clone look that distinguishes itself from other clone identities, yet still allows for the important visual identification of fellow members of this subculture.

Flannel shirts have been a successful part of many prior homosexual clone looks, and also for heterosexual clone looks such as the chain-walleted grunge look. So naturally, flannel should be part of the queercore clone look, since many potential queercore clones may already have such garments in their wardrobes. Long hair for men will distinguish them from the Jimmy Somerville look so popular with many homosexual men. Women may wish to choose from Chelseas (the skinhead chick look, not the president's daughter) or Mullets (short on top, long in the back.) Naturally, tattoos and piercings are looked on favorably. But queercore really needs something of its own, like barrettes were for the riot grrrl look, something previously rejected as unfashionable, which will be reclaimed as the signature item of the queercore look. I suggest sun visors, especially the green transparent or terrycloth-covered ones.

Queercore so far has been different from many other subcultural movements in that there has been no one identifiable and unifying musical style. With grunge, it was the quiet verses and anthemic choruses, coupled with a mumbling, whiny vocal style. With riot grrrl, it was bass-less bands with lo-fi sonics. Queercore should avoid experimentalism, since it is difficult for people to get into. Queercore bands should listen more closely to each other and try to sound more the same. It might be good to pick one earlier band and copy their style, as grunge did with Neil Young, and britpop has done with David Bowie and the Beatles. Wouldn't it be a wonderful world if all queercore bands sounded exactly like Queen?

Queercore bands should try to be fronted by males who project a macho image, to differentiate us from wimpy homos. Henry Rollins (in his earlier, long-hair look) would be the perfect queercore role model. Female queercore bands should endeavor to be more like Femme2Femme.

One of the other groups mentioned above, Riot Grrrl, grew out of a more organic social movement, but thanks to quick intervention by the media, managed to become a way for large record labels to package bands. Unfortunately, some of the original bands were unable to adapt to the new style favored by such media-annointed "riot grrrls" as Courtney Love and Alanis Morissette. They were unable to do the necessary toning down of political agendas and so forth. And it is unfortunately likely that some of today's so-called queercore bands will be unable to conform to the new queercore style, at least without the help of trained studio musicians, managers, and stylists. Likewise, most of today's zine publishers will be unable to produce professional-quality queer zines, and will be superseded by publishing professionals who will be able to create "personal zines," "rants," and interviews with the new breed of queercore bands.

It is important that these suggestions be adopted. Perhaps the name will even have to be changed -- how about "homogecore?" Otherwise, what are the chances of a queercore band ever having major-label success?

Larry-bob
larrybob@gmail.com
9/9/96


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