Rock is Ridiculous

Theatre, Music and Queer Culture

Jayne County performing in a Tony Ingrassia "Rock Party", Westbeth Theatre, New York, 1974. Photo:

This forthcoming book will investigate how the irreverent queer ethos of Ridiculous theatre both directly and indirectly shaped the sexual and gendered possibilities of pop musical stardom, taking performance approaches and visual styles from the New York underground to a global record-buying public. Focusing upon the limits and possibilities of being an underground “superstar” in the mainstream, the book will include detailed histories of the lives and careers of Jayne County, David Johansen, Ruby and the Rednecks, Patti Smith, Klaus Nomi and Cherry Vanilla amongst others.

The project is in its initial stages. Gavin has begun interviewing, doing library research and has recently delivered a presentation of work-in-progress on Jayne County at a conference in London.

As the research unfolds more elements of it will be shared here.