Elle Cee explores the history of queer music on RTRFM

Each Friday morning between 11am and 12pm community radio station RTRFM 92.1 presents Revolver, a show that changes theme each month.

In January presenter Elle Cee is using the space to explore the history of queer music. Over five weeks Elle will take the audience on a journey through a variety of musical genres, sharing the stories of how musicians expressed their sexuality and identities over the decades.

Graeme Watson spoke to Elle Cee about the project.

How did you go about deciding what to include in a history of Queer music?

I decided to include moments that I thought were pivotal to queer culture and progression. We start in 1928 with a blues song from Ma Rainey, who was a queer woman of colour. Each episode focuses on an era, we stop at many genres such as queercore, punk, glam and disco.

Is it hard to find the tracks you wanted to play?

I already had a pretty extensive collection of tracks so it was really more narrowing them down to the right tracks.

What stories have you discovered about the tunes and artists included?

Honestly just the struggle to be heard is the common story even with some of the more known artists. Some of these artists have never been reissued and certainly don’t have a huge digital footprint and we need to remember people who paved the way, otherwise what was it for?

Who was the first queer musicians, and music, you were aware of when you were growing up?

The first queer musician I remember knowing was queer was KD Lang i remember being a child seeing KD sing on TV and thinking “that’s a bloody cool suit”. My Mum mentioned that she was in relationships with other women and I just, as kids do, went “okay” and never put too much thought into it.

I guess the first person who lead me to discovering more queer artists would be Patty Schemel of Hole, she talked about artists like Phranc and Team Dresch. I came out when I was 25 and rediscovering all the music I’d heard Patty talk about when I was a teenager was essential really to my self awareness.

Tune in to RTRFM’s Revolver: A History of Queer Music at 11am every Friday morning in January, or re-stream the show from the station’s webpage

Declaration: Team members at OUTinPerth volunteer at RTRFM helping create the weekly LGBTIQ+ show All Things Queer. 

Tags: , , ,