THREE THINGS: THE “HOTARIOUS” BOYS TOWN GANG, ARNOLD LOBEL’S “SWEET & GAY” FROG & TOAD and the “MYSTERIOUS” MACABRE COLA/ WEIRDO
WIKIPEDIA: The Boys Town Gang were a San Francisco based disco and Hi-NRG band. Their popularity peaked in the 1980s, when the group reached number 5 on Billboard‘s Hot Dance Club Play chart with the single “Cruisin’ the Streets“, and number 4 in the UK Singles chart and number 1 in the Netherlands, Belgium and Spain with their cover version of “Can’t Take My Eyes Off You“.
On the records “Remember Me” / “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough” and “Cruisin’ The Streets” Cynthia Manley provided lead vocals with Robin Charin, Don Wood, Phill Manganello, Tom Morley and Keith Stewart providing back-up.
From the 1981 album Disc Charge and onwards Jackson Moore was lead singer with Tom Morley and Bruce Carlton as back-up.
videos via Grant Heaps
THE NEW YORKER: Lobel’s daughter Adrianne suspects that there’s another dimension to the series’s sustained popularity. Frog and Toad are “of the same sex, and they love each other,” she told me. “It was quite ahead of its time in that respect.” In 1974, four years after the first book in the series was published, Lobel came out to his family as gay. “I think ‘Frog and Toad’ really was the beginning of him coming out,” Adrianne told me. Lobel never publicly discussed a connection between the series and his sexuality, but he did comment on the ways in which personal material made its way into his stories.
In a 1977 interview with the children’s-book journal The Lion and the Unicorn, he said:
You know, if an adult has an unhappy love affair, he writes about it. He exorcises it out of himself, perhaps, by writing a novel about it. Well, if I have an unhappy love affair, I have to somehow use all that pain and suffering but turn it into a work for children.
Lobel died in 1987, an early victim of the aids crisis. “He was only fifty-four,” Adrianne told me. “Think of all the stories we missed.”
and now this little mystery… apparently a Toronto Church Street event coming soon… Gothy dolls and such. Hold me, I’m scared!