|VIEWS We are greater than AIDS |
by David Furnish 2011-03-09
This year marks 30 years since the discovery of the first case of what was later identified as AIDS. With that news, our lives and relationships as gay men were forever altered. We witnessed an unthinkable tragedy that has taken the lives of more than a quarter million of our gay and bisexual friends and lovers. In the face of this devastation leaders emerged. The crisis helped to shape our community's political agenda, and it provided a platform around which gay leaders could advocate for rights and equality. We realized that if we informed ourselves and acted on what we learned, we could be greater than the disease. Thanks to the efforts of gay men and our allies, our community saw a dramatic decline in new infections by the late 1980s. Many of us can look back with immense pride at the collective response in those early years.
The availability of effective combination drug therapies in 1996 fundamentally changed how we thought about HIV. No longer was HIV the death sentence it had once been. We had new hope. For many, HIV was a manageable chronic disease. Many of us turned our attention to marriage equality, adoption rights, the repeal of "Don't Ask Don't Tell" and other pressing issues facing our community. While we broadened our focus, AIDS did not.
When we become complacent, HIV thrives. New HIV infections among gay and bisexual men in the United States are on the rise. Yes, on the rise. We are the only risk group for whom this is the case. According to a recent study by the CDC, one in five of us (that is, gay and bisexual men) in some of the largest U.S. cities today are living with HIV—and half of those who are positive do not know it. Unless we act now, we will see these numbers rise even higher, and quickly.
My partner, Sir Elton John, often talks of his friend Ryan White—a boy whose tremendous courage in the face of AIDS forced our leaders to take action and inspired many of us. Today, Ryan's story continues to remind us that just as HIV began one person at a time it will end one person a time.
Elton and I recently had a baby boy. Becoming fathers has given us new perspective on what it means to take care of one another—as parents, as partners and as members of a community. And, it reminds us that we cannot be complacent in helping to create the kind of society in which we want our son to grow up. In short, we must take responsibility and each do our part to create a future free of HIV—by being informed, using protection, getting tested and treated, and getting involved.
And so, as we mark 30 years of this disease, Elton and I have recommitted ourselves to being greater than AIDS. As chairman of the Elton John AIDS Foundation, I'm proud of the community organizations with which we are working to fight stigma and prevent the spread of the disease. And, I'm proud that leading LGBT companies, like HERE Media, LOGO TV, and this publication, are refocusing attention on this epidemic, and I hope more will join us.
As a community, we once showed that we could be greater than AIDS. Now is our time to do it again. Visit http:// www.greaterthan.org/pride to get started.
David Furnish is chairman of the Elton John AIDS Foundation (http:// www.ejaf.org) ;. The Elton John AIDS Foundation is a supporting partner of Greater Than AIDS (http:// www.greaterthan.org/pride) ;, a national movement organized in response to AIDS in America with a focus on the most affected communities. Photo by Richard Leslie
Elton John and his band Wells Fargo Center on Friday, March 25thhttp://www.wwwtixx.com/tickets/concert-tickets/elton-john-in-concert-at-wells-fargo-center-on-friday-march-25th/
March 9, 2011 by admin
Elton John and his band will appear in concert at Wells Fargo Center on Friday, March 25th performing their “Greatest Hits Live” concert, featuring number one chart hits and classic album tracks from throughout Elton’s incredible five-decade career. Tixx.com since 1979 has provide the best seats for all concerts sprots theater in area. Visa MasterCard American Express accepted
for tickets call now 1-800-688-4000
Set to take center stage, the documentary about the making of Sir Elton John's album "The Union" will open the 10th annual Tribeca Film Festival.
Organizers just announced that "The Union" will be one of the 32 featured films of the festival, with the "Tiny Dancer" based picture to be the very first one shown.
Of the decision, festival co-founder Jane Rosenthal told, “Cameron Crowe gives audiences unprecedented access into Elton John and Leon Russell’s artistic process in an emotional and realistic way."
"The Union" is set to be shown on the Tribeca Film Festival's April 20th kickoff, with Elton set to perform live after the screening.
Elton John’s Shoes Have A Lot To Answer Forhttp://www.virtualgranny.com/granny-blog/virtualgranny-blog/elton-john%E2%80%99s-shoes-have-a-lot-to-answer-for-2026.html
Virtual Grandpa Bob blames Saturday night’s shenanigans on Elton John’s shoes. After all, he wasn’t about to blame it on the copious amounts of G&T he knocked back whilst wearing the slippery little devils was he?
The evening had all started so well. Virtual Granny Manor is situated in a sublime seaside village which appears exquisitely sleepy at first glance, but is absolutely rocking with activity amongst the residents.
On Saturday night the entertainment in the village hall was Horace Silverman & the White Gardenias – an absolutely knockout band performing 1930’s and 1940’s music who wouldn’t look out of place in the famous Carlyle Hotel with Woody Allan playing alongside. However, tonight we had our very own Josie McDonough at the helm.
Villager Josie was quite a star in the swinging 60’s when she was known as Truly Smith – have a look at her as a gal here http://www.readysteadygirls.eu/#/truly-smith/4531650067
Now she’s just as sassy and sexy as ever and Virtual Grandpa Bob was in the mood to party. Indeed we all were. Guests had dressed up especially in the garb of the era and we could all have just stepped out of a Frank Sinatra film or such-like.
It’s true that pink shoes were not all the rage in the 1940’s, but Virtual Grandpa Bob looked otherwise perfect for the period and rather dashing in his dicky bow tie and suit and the shoes – well these weren’t just any ordinary shoes….
A couple of years back we happened to be mooching around Covent Garden in London when we came upon a pop up shop created by the Elton John’s AIDS Foundation. The “Out of the Closet” sale offered a veritable cornucopia of clothes being offloaded by Elton John and his partner David Furnish with all proceeds going to the charity.
In amongst the gems were a rather splendid pair of dusky pink brogue like shoes, pointed of toe and a perfect fit when I forced a rather embarrassed Virtual Grandpa Bob to wedge his woolly socks inside of them. Result! He looked ready to run down the Yellow Brick Road and I immediately propelled him towards the cash till to pay up.
Two years later Elton’s shoes lay forlornly and almost forgotten in the cupboard, quietly tapping away, waiting for their moment in the spotlight once again. There isn’t that much call, after all, for dusky pink shoes when we are surrounded by sand and water and miles of deepest countryside.
But on Saturday night, their moment finally came. The theatrical slant of the occasion called for sweep of pure glamour and the shoes were back centre stage on Virtual Grandpa Bob’s size sevens.
True, he did have a bit of difficulty walking up the street in them, on account of the toes being almost winkle picker like in length, but hey, that’s a small price to pay for stepping in the shoes of a superstar for the night.
Now I have a theory and some people claim it to be true, that when organs are transplanted in to another body, the recipient often takes on the mannerisms of the donor. Well it seemed to be a similar situation with Elton’s shoes. As the music began, they seemed absolutely desperate to do a Crocodile Rock and the more his feet moved, the more Virtual Grandpa Bob jitterbugged in his seat…as he continued in quick tempo to top up his G&T’s.
Just as the band started the haunting opening notes of “Hava Nagila” The shoes could restrain themselves no more. VirtualGrandpa Bob sprang in to action and joined a group who were now circling the centre of the dance floor, holding hands…ready for the fast bit.
Elton’s shoes were suddenly propelled into a spin as soon as the tune started getting faster, until suddenly the unfeasibly long toes got involved in a head on collision with another dancer’s sling backs, flipping Virtual Grandpa Bob over, flat on to his back, creating a total domino effect as all of the Hava Nagila dance troupe came down on top of him.
It was time to go home. But Elton John’s shoes weren’t in the mood to stop tapping yet – indeed they rock ‘n rolled Virtual Grandpa Bob backwards again in to the flowerpot outside the front door and on re-instatement to an upright position, continued to quickstep in to the hallway, with a nifty move that had him landing flat on his face splayed out like a star fish. Two more pirouettes backwards ensued down the stairs as we attempted to climb up them on the way to bed.
I only released him from my vice like grip when we had finally scaled the staircases to arrive at the upper hallway (We live in a house three storeys high) nipping back down stairs myself, to turn off lights/clear up devastation caused by the stunt routine.
When I returned upstairs, Virtual Grandpa Bob was no -where to be seen. I finally spotted two pink shoes sticking out and pointing upwards from one of the rooms off the upper hall. I followed the toe tapping to discover the rest of Virtual Grandpa Bob’s body still suited and dicky bow tied, staring completely glazed up towards the ceiling. I think he was star struck.
Enough was enough! I yanked Elton John’s shoes off and hurled them in the cupboard where I swear I could still hear them humming “I’m still standing” as I slammed the door firmly shut. Virtual Grandpa Bob clearly was not, nor was my little crocodile now in any state to continue rocking. But he was certainly moaning “Don’t let the sun go down on me” In the morning, I can tell you.
Moral of the story is, don’t be tempted to wear other people’s shoes. My Granny always warned me about the habit and I thought she was worried about verruca’s. Now I know the real reason why.
Wednesday, 9 March 2011
Elton John to play Hatfield Househttp://peoplepress.blogspot.com/2011/03/elton-john-to-play-hatfield-house.html
Sir Elton John is to headline a day-long music event at Hatfield House this summer. The event ‘Magic Summer Live’ is being launched by London radio station, Magic105.4, in association with BT, and will be held in the grounds of the Hertfordshire stately home on Sunday 17th July.
Tickets from £60 are on sale now, with VIP tickets £95.
Doors open at 12 noon with first acts expected at 2pm.
Elton is no stranger to Hertfordshire, of course as his long standing support of Watford Football Club is well known. In fact, I remember many, many years ago he played a gig in aid of the football club at Vicarage Road, sharing the stage with Rod Stewart and Thin Lizzy!