In a new cover story with Out magazine, Maroon 5 frontman Adam Levine shares more than a few statements about his perspective on gay people and his relationship with the gay community.
The singer, who worked as one of the celebrity judges on the breakout singing competition The Voice, talked about his gay brother, suggestions that he's gay himself, and the subtle (or blatant) homophobia on that other singing competition, American Idol, that doesn't present itself on The Voice. In the first season of Levine's series, four out gay or lesbian contestants were selected as finalists.
Levine asserted that to be a frontman of a pop/rock band, it's almost a requirement for fans and other listeners to question your sexuality:
"There's no way to hide my straightness ... but if people didn't think there was a small chance I was gay, then I wouldn't be doing my job very well. Look at the best ones, guys whose sexuality was always questioned. Bowie. Jagger. Freddie Mercury. I wouldn't be the front man of a band if that question hadn't come up at some point."
He also voiced his support for "nature" over "nurture," using his brother as a test case:
"I can single-handedly dispel any ideas that sexuality is acquired - trust me, you're born with it. My brother is gay, and we knew when he was two. We all knew. ... A lot of people don't want their kid to be gay and will fight it at all costs. But I've got news for you - it's a losing fucking battle. The more you fight it, the more fucked-up your kid's gonna be. You've just gotta embrace it from the beginning. That's the only way to deal with it as a family. Otherwise, you're just screwing yourself over, and you're gonna make your kid miserable."
And, of course, in the ever-present Hollywood need to one-up the competitor, he lauded The Voice for treating gay and lesbian contestants non-discriminately:
"What's always pissed me off about Idol is wanting to mask that, for that to go unspoken. C'mon. You can't be publicly gay? At this point? On a singing competition? Give me a break. You can't hide basic components of these people's lives. The fact that The Voice didn't have any qualms about being completely open about it is a great thing. ... It's a great show because it doesn't alienate anybody. If you're a talented person, and you want a career, and you're trying to join an extremely intimidating and also completely dismantled industry - skip all that other bullshit, and go for what can be immediately effective."
Read the rest of the Out interview here - and sound off below about whether The Voice's greater embrace of gays and lesbians has you turning the channel away from Idol, and whether rock stars really do have to set off some people's gaydar in order to be considered bona fide.