Brian Sims On How Today’s Decisions Affect LGBT Pennsylvania

Sims speaking at a press conference about HB300, a bill he stresses as the "best thing we can do for LGBT people in Pennsylvania right now."

This morning, as I know you’re well aware, the Supreme Court delivered two landmark decisions on same-sex marriage. The Defense of Marriage Act was struck down, allowing legally married gay couples throughout the land to reap the federal benefits they deserve. Hollingsworth vs. Perry, the case that challenged the constitutionality of California’s same-sex-marriage-banning Proposition 8, was dismissed, clearing the way for gay couples in the Sunshine State to enjoy their marriage rights once again. It’s hugely exciting news, but one big question remains: How does it affect us here in non-marriage state Pennsylvania? I dialed up State Representative Brian Sims for answers: Read more »

PHOTOS: Behind the Scenes With Our Next Guy at the End of the Bar

This week, we did another photoshoot for the Fall Issue, this time with our next Guy at the End of the Bar, Jeremy Tyler. I don’t want to give away too much about him, but I will say he’s 30 years old, a doctoral student in psychology and when asked what he’s looking for in a man, he told us he wants a great kisser. Melt.

You can see the spread when the Fall Issue comes out in September, but for now, check out some of these behind-the-scenes shots photographed at Stir Lounge by our lovely intern Nicole Rosenberg.  Read more »

Philly Tattoo Artist Named Ink Bitch To Star on Season 3 of Ink Master

When season 3 of Spike TV’s Ink Master premieres next month, local tattoo artist Jackie ‘Ink Bitch’ Jennings will stand among the 16 national contestants vying for a $100K prize and the honor of being named one of America’s most badass tattooists. If you’re a reality-show fan, you probably know the drill, but for those not keeping score, the show, hosted by Jane’s Addiction guitarist Dave Navarro, places contestants in weekly tattoo challenges, slowly whittling them down until they have a winner.

Jennings is going into the competition with a solid 10 year’s experience, spending much of that time honing her skills at Tru Blu Tatu in Bristol, Pa. She currently lives with her girlfriend — a bartender at Stir Lounge in Rittenhouse — in South Philly. I’ll admit, my fingers trembled a little when I dialed her number this week for a phone interview. I mean, chances were pretty high that a conversation with someone named “Ink Bitch” could go south in a gay heartbeat. I couldn’t have been more wrong — though I wouldn’t want to cross her. Keep reading to learn more about the tough-cookie tattoo artist, including the precious thing she says she’d do with the prize money, if she plans on opening her own shop in Philly and what on Earth made her lose her shit in this preview clipRead more »

15 Questions With Philly Songbird Sean Thompson

This week, local gay-run theater company Quince Productions kicks off its fifth go-round of “Full House: A Series of Cabarets.” The five-day festival comprises eight different shows performed by 20 established and up-and-coming singers from the Philadelphia area. One of those from the former category is the dazzling Sean Thompson.

Thompson, a full-time equity actor, has appeared in 40 shows, commercials and other productions since graduating from Temple in 2008 with a Music and Theater degree. For “Full House” he will be performing “I Need a Sunburn: A Solivagant’s Cabaret,” which he describes as a “very chill” evening where he’ll be singing songs that “I’ve just been living with for a while.”  Guests can be ready to treat their ears to tunes like “Raining in Boston,” “Santa Fe” and “California Stars” — all of which, he says, “seem to form a pretty solid theme of losing and finding yourself and of traveling.” If that doesn’t sound dreamy enough, Thompson is donating ALL of his proceeds to Equality PA.

Head over heels yet? Keep on reading for the Q&A I did with him this week, where we chat about his love affair with American lit, his loooong list of diva inspirations and a drunken run in he had with a certain member of the Danny Tanner householdRead more »

5 Questions with Ugandan Trans Activist Julius Kaggwa

The 12th annual Philadelphia Trans-Health Conference kicks off today with a solid three-day lineup of panels, workshops, keynotes and even parties that are meant to promote transgender health and wellness. Several go-getters from Philly’s trans community will be hosting activities throughout the week, but the conference is also playing host to activists and educators from around the world. One of those speakers from afar is trans LGBTI activist Julius Kaggwa, the program director for Support Initiative for People with atypical sex Development (SIPD), an intersex support group that is fighting to stop Uganda’s Anti-Homosexuality Bill, which you may also know as the “Kill the Gays” bill. Read more »

13 Questions With the New Mr. Gay Philadelphia

Photo by Alexander John Photography

This weekend, at Bruce Yelk’s much-hyped Triumphant Pride event, Thomas Westerfer was crowned 2013 Mr. Gay Philadelphia. Here, I cozy up to the 27-year-old event planner from Troy, Pa., in the attempt to get to know our new king a little better. Takeaways? He loves a good exclamation point, he gets a kick out of dancing around in his underwear in front of his straight roomies and, heads up, fellas, he’s single as a one-dollar bill. Read more »

STRIPPED: Philly Model Jerrell Goodson Undresses For a Q&A

I am …
The definition of mixed. My dad was black and white, and my mom is black and American Indian.

The surprising thing that people don’t know about me is …
I’m a six-time state and world champion in five different styles of martial arts. I’ve been training since I was 11 years old.

Batman, Superman or Spider-Man?
Duh: Superman!

You wouldn’t believe I eat …
Everything! Except fried chicken. I absolutely hate fried chicken. Unless it’s made by the Goddess Isis Brooks D’Shey.

When it comes to sex …
I am very passionate. But there are times when I prefer some roughhousing. (Best described as a scene from Mr. & Mrs. Smith.) Read more »

Interview with Comedian Erin Foley

Comedian Erin Foley is hot, with a hysterical take on life and spot-on humor and wit to boot. Her résumé touts appearances on Conan, Chelsea Lately, Comedy Central Presents, Curb Your Enthusiasm, and even a supporting role in the Cameron Crowe film Almost Famous. This Saturday night, Erin will bring her brand of standup to Philadelphia when she performs two shows at Tabu Lounge and Sports Bar, where, full disclosure, I am an employee. I had the chance to kiki with her over the phone, dishing about everything from her take on Philly and Chelsea Handler to lesbo bars. Read more »

Chitchatting With Woody’s Co-Owner Billy Weiss

The dimly-lit, atmospheric interior of Woody's new Rosewood cocktail lounge, which opened in April.

When it comes to interacting with media outlets, the Weiss brothers — co-owners of Woody’s, Voyeur, and now Rosewood — are, shall we say, shy. So much so that they’re rarely photographed in public (note that we have no profile shot to share — sad face), and their media motto goes something along the lines of, “No press, is good press.” Still, Billy Weiss was gracious enough to divert his attention away from the bar for a few lines of gay chatter about that new side-pocket Woody’s addition you’ve probably heard of (but never been to), as well as what it’s like being a club owner in the Gayborhood.

Oh, and did I mention Voyeur‘s getting renovations?

Read more »

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