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Queer Nation Star's Family Values Fight

Author: Jonty Skrufff
Wednesday, June 22, 2005

Leading UK DJ/ producer Luke Howard chatted to Skrufff this week about his upcoming mix CD for legendary London club Queer Nation and also challenged clubbers to shake off apathy about increasingly virulent anti-gay activists.

"We've got to stop the backlash there is from religious fundamentalists and family values campaigners and say "we are valid and our choices are valid'. You can't just bury your head in the sand and say "Yeah, everything's great because we've got this massive gay scene', said Luke, "We've got to be vigilant".

As one of Queer Nation's key resident DJs throughout the club's 17 year history, Luke has become one of the best known DJs on London's gay scene, more recently making a wider mark via his electro (clash) collaboration with Princess Julia (as The Most). Admitting that he's "probably as apolitical as most average queens on the scene' he suggested the key issue remains equality under the law, both for gays and anybody else pursuing unconventional lifestyles.

"It's not just about being gay because a lot of straight people are embracing alternative lifestyles too, for example, they're not getting married or not having children and doing whatever they want and that's what I'm talking about; you can perhaps call it "queer'," Luke suggested.

"Politicians, especially right wing politicians and church people, often talk about the family as if it's this sacred institution that must be protected at all costs when in reality the family can be great or awful- it can be totally dysfunctional. I think it's a nonsense when legislators try to protect the traditional family because more and more straight and gay people are rejecting the ideas of what a traditional family is altogether," he continued.

Luke also questioned the hedonism that continues to define many gay people's lifestyles, declaring "I don't think that getting high in a disco every weekend and having as much sex as you can is going to change or solve things.

It's great that you can do that, but as Larry Kramer said recently in a speech in New York, we're got to grow up, get our house in order and win the rights we deserve."

Salsoul Nation, featuring 28 classic Salsoul tracks edited and remixed by Luke is out on June 27.