Brendan Maclean is not your typical gay singer/songwriter -” and he prefers it that way.
Instead of dominating the local drag scene or dancing on the stage at a local bar or some dingy pub, he’s taking a different stab at fame by conquering the Triple J airwaves and ruling the independent music scene with his deep, dark yet musical theatre-inspired voice.
His music dwells in all different directions as he embraces the elements of jazz, rock and indie -” it’s quite impressive for a 20-year-old Shire boy.
In some ways Maclean isn’t so different in that he shares a similar story to many young gay men. He told Sydney Star Observer he hadn’t had the best school life due to harsh bullying.
-œPeople spotted I was gay and it was very melodramatic bullying where I came from, he said.
-œIt happened every day and it was a ridiculous cartoon. I had enough protection from teachers but I used creative arts to protect myself from it -” it’s very bittersweet now though.
Instead of being an artist with a message, Maclean prides himself on his music’s entertainment factor and his songs’ strong foundations.
-œSometimes artists can take having a message too seriously. I don’t think every song can be a classic with a moral to it. I definitely have it in my song Airport People, which is all about communicating with relationships and dealing with life but I like to write in a way that the listener can take any lyrics and say -˜OK I can see how that works for me as well’ and it doesn’t matter if you’re gay or straight, Maclean said.
-œI feel there is masculinity in my music. I think where it comes from is in my understanding of rock and jazz as well as loving all that so much and I see that if you do pansy it up too much that people stop listening and caring about what you’re saying. So if you can stop being anything at the moment, from being gay or straight, then people see you as a person.
-œBut in saying that, I’ve never had to hide my sexuality. Its pretty obvious -” sometimes on stage I skip around and put a skirt on and put sparkly make-up on -” but that doesn’t always have to mean you’re gay and there’s nothing wrong if you’re not.
For the remainder of the year, this young musician plans to finish his EP and to promote his music to radio stations as well as securing a spot in Triple J’s Unearthed competition.
-œLast year I was performing in gay venues and then it got too much and I started to realise that once I had taken advantage of that, there was nothing else to do as they just wanted to hear you do funny Britney covers on your keyboard, he said.
info: For more details on Brendan Maclean check out his website on www.myspace.com/brendanmaclean.