February 2018


"Queercore: Queer Punk Media Subculture"
Review By: Jimi LaLumia

In the past few months, the phenomena known as 'queercore' has become a subject of books and films, as the relationship between punk and the 'queer' world once again is placed under the microscope. Those of us who were around when the gay inflected glam scene of the early 70's gave birth to the first wave of punk in NYC and London have personally experienced the good, the bad and the ugly which followed, as newcomers jumped on board bringing their various phobias along with them, causing splinter factions to break away from what had started as a unified underground movement.

A new book, "Queercore: Queer PunkMedia Subculture", written by Curran Nault, is an intensive, college level master class study of every aspect of the birth and development of this sub cult that took on a life of it's own in the 80's via zines and gatherings, and continues to bubble beneath the surface of what has since become mainstream punk; it is without doubt the definitive documentation of this vastly misunderstood manifestation of the LGBT world, which operates separate and apart from the more conventional aspects of that world.

At the same time, a film called "Queercore' by Yony Leyser was released at the end of 2017, which sought to cover the same territory: I'd like to say I've seen it,but having arranged a interview for Leyser with the 'godmother of queercore', Jayne County, and allowing him to use a County recording in the film, it stunned me when none of the Jayne material was used, and she was basically swept to the side with what I'm told is a brief appearance/mention, which I found to be totally unacceptable (Jayne is given her rightful due in the "Queercore" book, as well as a new book,"David Bowie Made Me Gay; 100 Years Of LGBT Music", in which she is named 'the godmother of queercore'). While the film came and went after a day or two in NYC, the books mentioned are brilliant and effective guides to what appears to be the next wave of queercore, proving to be more important than ever in the current political climate of 2018.