Alex Blaze

Queer music Friday - Bloc Party's Kele Okereke

Filed By Alex Blaze | March 26, 2010 5:00 PM | comments

Filed in: Entertainment
Tags: bloc party, kele okereke, queer music

I keep a big list of all the LGBTQ musicians that I add to constantly as I hear about them. Since I started QMF three years ago, Bloc Party's Kele Okereke has been on my list with a question mark next to his name. But a couple of weeks ago he came out in an interview with BUTT magazine, and now here we are.

Here's a live performance of "This Modern Love." It's not their best-known song, but it's a personal favorite, and not just because Owen Pallett covered it (that's after the jump, along with some more Bloc Party videos).

Here's the video for "So Here We Are":

Here's "The Prayer":

Here is part of his interview with Butt, where he talks about coming out to his family.

"My parents are super-Catholic and they come from a culture in Nigeria where there weren't any visible gay people who were out and were happy.

"My parents are getting older and I didn't like the idea that they could possibly die without knowing something that is a big part of my life. It's not easy. But I know that they love me and I love them."

"This interview is actually an important step in my relationship with my parents. The reason I'm doing it is whenever I go out, I'm always stopped by young, gay kids who say it's really refreshing and encouraging to see someone like me being out in a relatively mainstream band.

"If I'd have had someone saying it's okay to be you when I was a teenager, I'd probably be a very different person. That is why I'm doing this now, after years of not doing it. It's good to show that gays come in all shapes and sizes."

As promised, here's Owen Pallett's cover of "This Modern Love":

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As soon as my eMusic credits cycle, I'm getting the album.

I remember Kele being interviewed in Attitude (British gay publication) when the 2nd album came out (I think it was the 2nd).
If I remember correctly, he initially talked of being bisexual. But as the interview progressed he was describing himself as gay.
I was impressed at how open he became by the end of the article/interview.
"I Still Remember" is an incredible song of first love, of adolescent longing (boy to boy, in this case...).