She hated ABBA

The world is a bit quieter this morning due to the loss of our loving prolific commenter and friend Anne Marie. She was often referred to as our Warrior Queen because she never failed to stand up for what she believed in. She believed in equality and justice for all and was never afraid of speaking out against oppression, injustice, greed and stupidity. She seemed to take pride in the title Warrior Queen, as she should’ve.

Anne Marie loved to enjoy life, have fun and loved music. Her Saturday night dance parties kept us tapping our toes for years. Due to the unfortunate turn of events in November of 2016, her Saturday night dance parties turned into Saturday night Protest parties. However she knew how to have fun with her protests and still kept our toes a tapping.

One regret I have is that I never got the chance to do a twirl across the dance floor with Anne Marie. I am sure she could cut a rug when the opportunity arose. She had that spark that made life magic. A spark that I could tell loved to dance.

However there was one dance music group that I don’t believe you would find Anne Marie enjoying on the dance floor. As we all know she was quite outspoken about many things and one of them was her rather dislike of a group called ABBA. Rather dislike? Nope. Hated? Yup, that’s more Anne Marie.

I’ve always rather enjoyed ABBA and I love an ABBA tune while taking a twirl across a dance floor. However for obvious reasons I’m a bit melancholy this morning and don’t feel like dancing. I feel like listening to a beautiful voice singing a beautiful melodious tune.

Anne Marie,                                                                                                                                                                      I hope you don’t mind that I take a moment remember you in the same post that I also post the tune Dancing Queen. If you do please forgive me. I just want you to know as you cross into the next chapter of your journey that you aren’t only my Warrior Queen, but also my Dancing Queen…just not the ABBA one.

Once….Upon A Carnival Cruise

Back in 1984 Fearsome was just but a porn star mustache, thick and brown over my young twenty something lip. My Lover at the time and I took a little trip to Key West. We stayed in a guest house called Alexander’s. At the time Alexander’s had only 8 guest rooms and was owned by friends named Walt & Del.

Walt had a friend coming into town who was starting a new all gay cruise line called RSVP. His name was Kevin Moser from  Minneapolis. He had just chartered and sailed his first cruise, it had been a success. He knew that he needed to market well for he was turning all the cash around to charter more cruise liners to get this off the ground as a company. He had a market, and his market had disposable cash.

Walt approached me and asked if I would be willing to model for Kevin. He apparently needed a blonde to add to the photo shoot to help balance out the all hunky brunettes he was bringing with him. I had never been a model, haven’t since. Only thing was this was no longer the late 70s, pornstar Fearsome had to go.

Fearsome went down a Key West drain and the photo shoot took place. I ended up not only in the printed brochure for several years to come but in ads in local gay rags, national gay magazines and was even spotted on posters promoting the newly successful RSVP Vacations gay cruise line.  Yet I had never actually been on a cruise. Yes my dear pretty, advertising is just that…staged.

Many years later I went on my first RSVP cruise in 1994. I was hooked and have been on many more since that cruise, more than 20 and still counting. I had a memory pop into my head this morning and it wasn’t from that first one, but one about 1997. That memory sent me on a you tube search to find a certain Propellerheads and Miss Shirley Bassey tune.

A good friend of mine, Brian, and myself were closing down the outdoor dance floor about 3, ok maybe 4, in the morning. Outdoor dance floors on cruise ships are incredible at sea under the stars. DJ Robbie Leslie of studio 54 fame was spinning the tunes as Brian and I danced big. Dancing big is using the whole dance floor as the crowd thins out at the wee hours. Let’s just say that there may have been some dancing enhancement medication involved.  Suddenly our hypnotizing gyrations stopped as Robbie popped in a new tune….

…the hips quickly started gyrating again and my hips still gyrate to this tune to this day.

The lyrics lend themselves to this upcoming election season. I actually find them quite humorous in this context. Enjoy!

Remembering

Somehow anniversaries like the one I had this week take me on a walk down memory lane. It’s Friday so I’ve been thinking about the music and playing some of it to get me a movin’. It’s been a good day and one tune in particular from my past has been a keepin’ my toes a tappin’.

Earlier this week I mentioned my days frolicking about Key West and frequenting the dance floor of The Copa. This tune came out before I met the better half on an earlier trip. The first time I heard it was another one of those special nights when the DJ was premiering a new dance track. As usual the place had once again transformed into yet another decor. It seems The Copa was much like Auntie Mame’s beloved Beekman Place, ever changing to fit the latest mood.

This trip to Key West the interior of the old movie palace was stark. The walls down each side were stripped of anything at all and were white behind the long bars that lay between them and the huge dance floor. The stage was empty with just the white big screen. The music pumping and the colorful lighting system raising the energy of the dancers below the grand high ceiling. These were the days before laser technology and intelibeams so lighting systems were quite extensive if they were to have much effect at all.

I remember dancing and looking up into the lights and wondering what spectacle they had waiting for us. I could see lots of neon suspended above that had yet to even flicker and many large light boxes hanging above the bars that were still dark. Dance I did and getting a cocktail was easy as the bars were as long as the dance floor itself and lined each side of it.

Many cocktails later we were at that climax point sometime after midnight. The music was pulsing, shirts were off, dance floor packed and sweaty bodies filled the place. The usual lighting gave way to a full ceiling of neon sculpture coming to life above us as New Order’s Bizzare Love Triangle made its debut. I did not yet know the name of this tune so the series of neon circles, triangles and arrows didn’t yet make sense with meaning, just beauty.

The music was amazing as it pulsed and flourished. The neon sculpture now lit, filled the place and flowed with movement as it flashed and danced with us below. Then as the dance mix of this fabulous tune hit it’s bridge the suspended boxes flashed as if they were 1950’s flash pots flooding the stark walls with light. It all made sense. The neon sculpture had made its debut, the starkness of the interior was it’s art gallery and the sculpture danced with us.

That was The Copa, like Auntie Mame, spare no expense to make a night out an experience to last a lifetime. The rest of the trip that sculpture of neon that filled and entire ceiling of an old 1920’s movie palace danced with every song played as we danced below mesmerized by all it could do. A few months later when I made my trek back down south, the sculpture was gone and The Copa had yet another decor to fill it’s night with new surprises.