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12 April 2010



"Silent Alarm" was one of Bloc Party's best albums. Kele is a genius, love him and this post!

More black gay men in indie rock please!

Stuffed Animal

Ain't never been no such thing as a "queer" human being . . . it always pains me to hear a Black man claim such an ignorant label. This boy has some growing up to do.


"This boy has some growing up to do."

No, that would be you.
Do you ever make any other comments besides criticizing some black people who use the word "queer"? You must have a filter or an alarm set up because it's automatic and you never comment on anything else

Kele Okereke is British and Nigerian. The environment and sensibility that he grew up is not the same as a black gay man in Washington DC or Chicago's south side.

And who are you to constantly criticize how people self identify?

And if you REALLY want to go there, it always pains me to see black gay men who only sleep with white men find fault with other BGMs. Do you object to your white boyfriends calling themselves 'queer', or just the occasional black man?


Grant: I, too, am a black gay man who identifies as Queer and I think Kele's actions are very brave considering what is happening to black gay people around the world and across the African continent: they/we are hunted and slaughtered. I don't know who your gay role models were but black gay people NEED to see a Kele. So he's young, does that make him less a person because he see's himself as queer? Not every human being is alike. We may all have the same chromosomes and what not but trust me, humans are a queer folk in thinking and action.To be queer is to be homosexual as well as asexual. To be queer is to be like a cactus blooming in a desert where there isn't supposed to be any life.

What are you doing to stop the slaughter of young black gay men in America and around the world other than wag your finger at another black gay man who decided to step out the closet? Rod has a blog. I write and am visibly out with my partner in Crown Heights, Brooklyn. Kele is an just-out of the closet rock star. What do you do?

The term QUEER is NOT exclusive to human sexuality or behavior. It also involves thinking and/or having a contrary point of view; and involves socio-poltical action. Just like the word NIGGER, the term has been reclaimed by those it was hurled at.

Ever heard of QUEER THEORY or QUEER STUDIES? Google it. You might learn something.


@stuffedanimal i actually prefer the term queer too. it is actually not ignorant but an enlightened state. Queer was re-claimed by the gay punk scene as a big F-U to not only mainstream America but to gay America that thought we should be "nice" or "acceptable." i refer to myself as gay but i definitely identify as queer which is basically an "alt gay"


Bravo to Okereke for taking this step out of the closet! I wish him success in his search for love (what a lucky guy to get him!)

As for 'queer', while, yes, that term doesn't fit well in the mouths of many black Americans, it is accepted in academia (gay studies/queer studies) and an example of 'reclaiming' a previously negative term as one's own. And one of the first black gay poetry books to come out in the 1970s was titled "Black and Queer" by late Boston poet Adrian Stanford. I suspect we may be seeing that term being used more in the future.


this is great news, i am so happy for kele and and a major step forward. bravo! if only more black musicians had his strength.

i'm not going to argue with Stuffed Animal but would ask him why does that word set him off so much? i admit, it's not a word i use but my older uncle is gay (and southern)and thats a word he used. i have also seen that word used often in academia and LGBT youth. and as someone noted above, okereke admits to having sex with women.. maybe that word is more appropriate for him. plus he is british, i am sure the word has different implications for brits.


I Personally love the word queer! The way you see your own sexuality is not the way others see theirs! Plus gay community needs to stop trying to make things this or that, gay or straight, black or white! There is a large area of gray! Queer theory is all about operating on another platform! Using different tools to navigate life! Good for you Okereke!


I am enlightened each time that i visit ROD 2.0. Thanks to the previous posters for breaking down the use of the word 'queer'. Society is so quick to label you or 'put you in a box, and feel as though they are breaking you. Individuality is a beautiful thing. No one else's approval is needed except your own & GOD'S


that's one sexy queer brother.


wow ... I love Bloc Party and never knew that about Kele ...
welcome Kele...I promise we'll have fun ... LoL
real talk, great post... this is literally my best friend's coming out story ...

Johny Menjivar

how did he come out of the closet? he makes music that has never really related to sex and isn't really a huge music star.

i'm a big BLOC PARTY fan and own their albums and it never occurred to me that he was gay, much like i didn't know Brandon Flowers of THE KILLERS is married and a Mormon i believe.

so is it really "coming out the closet"?

if no speculates or even cares much about your sexuality, is it being closeted?

Aaron Milton

This is EXACTLY why I love this site! I love the diversity of information presented and the fact you cover all areas of the gay community.

I especially love that you just wrote this article on my boyfriend-who-doesn't-know-it- yet. I think it's very brave of him to come out as gay/queer (he first proclaimed he was bisexual) to not only continue on his own personal journey but also to show others it's okay to be who you truly are. It's good to see such a fantastic artist and overall good guy take this step.

As for a few of the commentators above me, I would encourage you guys not to get caught up over the labels. A rose by any other name smells just as sweet, and at the end of the day gay/queer/bi are of the same loom - all deserving of acceptance and respect.


In Britain, Queer either means gay or peculiar depending on the context.


i think he is very brave..nigeria is not a friendly place for gays queers same gender loving or how ever you want to name your sexual identity. I heard that he had come out already. very sexy man I have not heard the band's music? is it any good?

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