Tim Campbell, RIP

The following appeared in 1976 in Vol. 6, Issue No. 23 of Lee Brewster’s Drag magazine:

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There was no byline.

For many years I presumed it had been authored by Brewster and/or one of the other folks directly involved with Drag.

A little over two years ago I ran across the original source of the text that appeared in that issue of Drag.  Under a slightly different headline (“Equal Rights for Transexuals, Transvestites”) it was an article that appeared in the February 5, 1976 issue of the Minnesota Daily, the University of Minnesota’s newspaper.

And it had a byline.

The author was Tim Campbell.

He died in December at the age of 76.

There are several obituaries for him out in internet-land, but I’ll link only to the one in Lavender magazine.

And I link to it because Campbell wrote that one himself – not because of any particular trans aspect to it. He had his own priorities as to what he wanted people to think about when he died; he had that right (he wasn’t the host of a national primetime news program purporting to provide an objective view of history.) Having been a cohort of Jack Baker and Mike McConnell back in Minnesota in the 1970s, he not surprisingly saw last year’s gay marriage victory as a really big deal (the Baker-McConnell marriage being something he blogged about quite a bit.)

But there is one other thing I hope folks will remember even if he did not want to focus on it. He wasn’t just one of the early pro-marriage folks. And he wasn’t just the publisher, throughout the 1980s, of the GLC Voice newspaper. He also played a key role in bringing forth the trans-inclusive language that he wrote of in that Drag / Minnesota Daily piece.

Allan Spear, who Campbell did not think very highly of, did eventually begin introducing trans-inclusive legislation in Minnesota and was the Senate author of the bill that in 1993 became the first statewide trans-inclusive civil rights law.  But that wouldn’t have happened without the agitation at the state legislature in 1975 – which led to much in the way of hard feelings between the inclusionists and the incrementalists but also led to the trans-inclusion language being added to the then-gay-only Minneapolis Civil Rights Ordinance.

The fortieth anniversary of that occurred four days after Campbell’s death on Dec. 26.

That’s worth remembering.

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“We did everything fast in 1975”

That was how Glenn Frey, during the Eagles concert in Moline, Illinois, in 2009, concluded his recollection of the songwriting process behind “Lyin’ Eyes.”

Eagles_HotelCalifornia

Sadly, I didn’t try to sneak my good camera in – and this is the best that my Flintstones-era cell phone could manage during that concert.

Yes, objectively, David Bowie was more of a true musical and artistic force than Frey or the Eagles, but I have to confess: This one hits closer to home.  I wasn’t allowed to listen to radio stations that played Bowie’s music when I was a kid; I was well into college before I developed an appreciation for him (even now I like his cover of “Friday on My Mind” better than the Easybeats’ original.)

But “Lyin’ Eyes” was – and still is – one of my favorite songs.

And, yes, regarding a different song: I also have gone to the trouble of taking a selfie whilst standing on a corner in Winslow, Arizona (though I did it 24 years ago – with an AE-1, film and a tripod – and I opted for standing across from the post office instead of the ready-made photo-op that is available elsewhere in Winslow.)

R.I.P.

By Grabthar’s Hammer, You Will Be Remembered!

The ONLY real angel…

Rickman Metatron

RIP Alan Rickman.

Enjoy Life on Mars, David

This is the final episode of Marc Bolan’s 1977 U.K. television show – which includes David Bowie performing “Heroes” as well as Bowie and Bolan flubbing on a performance running under the closing credits (the flubbing is mostly by Bolan – falling over a microphone stand – but you can tell they both get a laugh out of it.)

The show is interesting because (1) it was Bolan’s final appearance anywhere (he died in a car wreck before it aired) and (2) compared to Bolan’s glam and all of the disco-era nonsense from some of the other performers, I think Bowie was actually the butchest person on the show.

Lemmy

Gene Elston, RIP

Gene Elston, Astros’ original voice, dies at 93

The Astros’ firing of Elston after the 1986 season was the moral equivalent of the Oilers’ firing of Bum Phillips six years earlier.

I lost all respect for the Astros organization after they dumped Elston, who was a true baseball announcer who made games on radio worth listening to, in favor of Milo Hamilton, a smarmy pitchman who always sounded like he was selling something, even when simply announcing balls and strikes.

As Opposed to Journalism at the Washington Blade, Which Died Some Time Back

Batgirl

Okay, I’m a child of the 1960s and 70s.  I probably saw a few episodes of Batman in first run (though I can’t remember for certain), but I definitely saw all of them ten times over on after-school re-runs – so the passing of Yvonne Craig is a bit depressing for me.

But not as depressing as Queer Channel Media devoting space to Batgirl while still ignoring the HRC internal report is infuriating.