There’s a story?
Did someone dig up his underwear modeling photos for DNA? No. The fact that a gay porn star is starring in his awful music video? No. His 2-year-old YouTube channel where he performed as “Steve Starchild“? No. The story is that Steve Grand is gay, which everyone already knew, and it’s been…not that big of a deal? I’m confused. What’s the story?
It’s the 4th of July, and two days ago, the 23-year-old singer and Chicago native released his first music video, an independently produced pop-country love song, “All-American Boy,” about one gay man’s unrequited love for a straight man.
Actually, Steve Grand has released multiple music videos, but who’s counting. Also: If “All-American Boy” is country, Johnny Cash is spinning in his grave.
But as the video uploaded to YouTube, he tells BuzzFeed, he obsessed over how the world — especially his church, where he works as a wedding and funeral singer — might respond to its same-sex content. “I had no idea what people were gonna think,” Grand says. “I had no idea how people were gonna respond. I couldn’t sleep.”
He couldn’t sleep!
The video wasn’t necessarily Grand’s coming out. He’d done that officially years earlier, but doing this was a terrifying act of vulnerability. “It’s me coming out as totally myself and just standing naked before the world,” he says.
A hot gay underwear model making a music video is now a terrifying act of vulnerability. This is where we’re at, folks.
Despite the risk and fear, Grand says it was something he felt compelled to do.
What was at risk? What was there to fear?
“I think that we’re at a time now where there’s no room to be anything but totally honest and totally who you are,” he says. “I decided this is who I’m gonna be to the world. Just my true, raw self. I’m putting it all out there.”
Well, aren’t we all? And aren’t we tired of people “putting it all out there”? Can we not hold anything back? Aren’t we tired of people who think other people should pay attention to them just because they’re being themselves? You’re not lying about who you are, so…congratulations?
“My sexuality hasn’t been a secret for a long time,” he says. … [H]is family and friends have been overwhelmingly supportive throughout the process of making his video. “[My mother’s] proud of me, and she’s been looking at the comments and she’s so touched and she’s so moved,” he says. “She’s come such a long way.” He’s still waiting to see how his church, where he sings, will respond. “I’m not sure what’s gonna happen now that this is all out in the open. That was just another sacrifice I had to make because that was a big chunk of my income.”
Talented musicians like Rufus Wainwright, Jake Shears, George Michael, Melissa Etheridge, Ricky Martin, Elton John, KD Lang, Boy George, and even Adam Lambert didn’t have to launch their music careers by talking about their sexuality because they didn’t need to. Steve Grand, whose talent and music is perfectly unremarkable, obviously does. That coupled with the fact that he has amazing abs makes him incredibly brave and inspiring, doesn’t it?
Here’s Steve Grand a.k.a. Steve Starchild in 2011: