Friday, December 19, 2014

Kate Clinton: 2014 LGBT Review & 2015 Forecast

In this exclusive audio interview Emmy Winner Charlotte Robinson host of OUTTAKE VOICES™ talks with Kate Clinton, our favorite political humorist. As we head into the New Year it’s time to reflect on 2014 and chat about what 2015 will bring our LGBT community. This has definitely been another year for marriage equality. As the year comes to an end gay and lesbian couples can now legally marry in 35 states. However, as we move forward with LGBT equality in America there are still 79 countries where being LGBT is illegal. We talked to Kate about how much work still needs to be done and her spin on our current LGBT issues.

When asked what she would like to see happen for LGBT civil rights in 2015 Clinton stated, “Well I think our big challenge in 2015 is going to be the kind of slimy interpretation of the horrible Hobby Lobby case; the right to refuse on your religious convictions and that’s bigger than a company that does flowers saying ‘No we’re not going to do flowers for that gay wedding’. But I do think there’s going to be a lot of push back and not that kind of full frontal assault on marriage equality, but again just more chipping away of LGBT rights.” On marriage equality heading to the US Supreme Court in 2015 Clinton added, “I do think it’s moving. I think that Evan Wolfson, the intrepid Evan Wolfson and the Freedom to Marry have really had a plan that they have been following and I do think their absolute goal is to get a decision about federal marriage equality at the Supreme Court.” When asked about LGBT workplace protection and the Republican majority in 2015 Clinton concluded, “I think there’s been a lot of work done through organizations like Out & Equal that have really been working with corporations and their memberships and their employee relations groups to really talk about discrimination in the workplace. I think that it’s been very much under the radar. They’ve been doing amazing work with corporations not only here but internationally and I do think that the notion that ENDA is just good business might sway moderate corporate business types in the Republican Party. I do think that it does have a possibility but we can’t do it without trans rights…”

Clinton is also very involved with NCLR (The National Center for Lesbian Rights) and LPAC (Lesbian Political Action Committee) conceptualized by her wife Urvashi Vaid to give lesbians a real and meaningful seat at the political table. Currently Kate is working on a new book and revealed to us the name of her new 2015 tour “Hello Katey: A One Woman Pussy Riot” she’ll be performing nationally.
For More Info: kateclinton.com

Monday, December 15, 2014

Larry Robinson Creates New Book “Mirror, Mirror”

In this exclusive audio interview Emmy Winner Charlotte Robinson host of OUTTAKE VOICES™ talks with Larry Robinson psychotherapist and life counselor about his new book “Mirror, Mirror: Reflections of Self: 365-Day Life Journal”. Robinson’s book evolved from 35 years of counseling both LGBT and heterosexual clients and from his Facebook page entitled “Mindful Thinking” that is followed by over 165,000 globally. The emotional growth that can be achieved through this book is truly unique. “Mirror, Mirror” is not a self-help book, it’s a help yourself book. After each of the 365 lessons readers will find a question to answer and space is provided for their answer. You can work on these lessons alone or with a partner. Readers can then return to it any time and check their progress and each time they go through its pages, they will discover something new about themselves. We talked to Larry about his inspiration for writing “Mirror, Mirror” and his spin on our LGBT issues.

When asked about his involvement with our LGBT community Robinson stated, “My involvement goes back at least forty years as my first volunteer job was at a place called The Homosexual Health Center on Boylston Street in Boston where we did volunteer counseling with gay and lesbian men and women. It was operating for about five years and then it shutdown and that’s when I decided basically to go into my own business. Probably it was 1981 that I did some volunteer work for The AIDS Action Committee and I got my first AIDS patient and it wasn’t even identified as AIDS then in ’81, it was called gay cancer. Unfortunately so few people were out at that time. My client was diagnosed with whatever they believed it was and he died about three weeks later, it was very quick. From there I worked with many gay men who were infected with the AIDS virus, who were all HIV positive and unfortunately they all died. I think my job basically at that point wasn’t about how to live, it was more about how to die because the death rate was so enormous at that time. So my hand has always been involved in the community and I think I’ll always be involved. I work now with gay couples, singles, I think it’s part of my life to help people feel better about who they are.”

Larry Robinson has a Master of Education in Counseling from Boston University, is a clinically certified forensic counselor working with the Essex County District Attorney's office in the Juvenile Diversion Program and is a certified divorce mediator. He is the founder of Mindful Thinking that focuses on change and living in the now. His new book, “Mirror, Mirror: Reflections of Self” published by Xlibris, was written with this in mind and with the intention of helping people across the world change and better their lives.
For More Info: mindfullthinking.com

Monday, December 8, 2014

Gay Activist Zeke Stokes New Fashion Tie Line & More

In this exclusive audio interview Emmy Winner Charlotte Robinson host of OUTTAKE VOICES™ talks with Zeke Stokes about his new line of men's ties made in small batches and handcrafted in the USA just in time for XMAS. Inspired by the high quality, handmade items of a bygone era, each piece is constructed with the most discerning tastes in mind. A lifelong lover of fine clothing Zeke’s inspiration for a line of ties came when the grandfather of his partner passed away unexpectedly and left a treasure trove of vintage menswear behind. They were well crafted, timeless and inspired the collection. A number of them contained three buttonholes on the end of the tie to keep it fixed in place to your shirt. Zeke decided to make this a signature of the new line. We talked to Zeke about his passion for fashion and his spin on our LGBT issues.

When asked what he would like to see happen for LGBT equality in the next few years Stokes stated, “If you look at national polling seven out of ten people in this country say they know someone personally who is LGB or T and we know that knowing someone personally is the thing that brings about acceptance and inclusion. We need to get that number to ten out of ten people. In the South that number is more like six out of ten people so we have a little more work to do in the South then we do in other places in this country. We know that knowing someone personally, having someone in your personal life either at work, at school, at home in your family, that’s what makes a difference and brings people through the journey of acceptance and inclusion and that’s what I would love to see. This means that we need people coming out and speaking publicly about their authentic lives. I was so excited to see Ty Herndon the very popular country artist come out publicly and be quite a groundbreaker in the national community. Very quickly he was followed by Billy Gilman who sold millions of country albums, who came out and said Ty Herndon inspired him to do that. We need these kinds of voices; we need voices from the world of athletics, Michael Sam, Jason Collins, such pioneers, we need more of those and we need more allies. We can’t do this alone there aren’t enough of us to move the needle for everyone. So we need allies to tell their stories of moving from a place of non-acceptance to a place of acceptance, inclusion and understanding. I think that’s where our work needs to be focused right now.”

Currently Zeke Stokes is Vice President of Programs at GLAAD (Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation). He leads a staff of media professionals in both Los Angeles and New York City in GLAAD's Entertainment Media, News Media, and Spanish-Language Departments, as well as the organization's transgender, sports, international and youth initiatives. Previously he was communications director for Servicemembers Legal Defense Network and then director of external relations at OutServe-SLDN where he played a key role in advancing LGBT military equality, repealing “Don't Ask, Don't Tell” and defeating the so-called Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). In addition to his new tie line and his work at GLAAD, Zeke is currently a co-producer on the upcoming docu-reality series, “TransMilitary”.
For More Info: zekestokes.com

Monday, December 1, 2014

Getting Groomed By Wedding Planner Jason Mitchell

In this exclusive audio interview Emmy Winner Charlotte Robinson host of OUTTAKE VOICES™ talks with wedding planner Jason Mitchell about his new organizer “Getting Groomed: The Ultimate Wedding Planner for Gay Grooms” that offers a refreshing approach for LGBT readers planning a wedding or commitment ceremony. Gay couples will learn how to set a budget, organize the guest list, design invitations, dress and style the big day and much more. With plenty of wit and charm “Getting Groomed” provides pockets for stashing important forms and contracts and your master timeline will keep you on track for your event. In keeping you organized “Getting Groomed” helps prevent couples from doubting their decision-making skills. The checklists, folder and timeline included in this book will keep the planning process simple, foolproof and fabulous. This elegant planner is the perfect resource and XMAS gift for stylish grooms-to-be. We talked to Jason about his inspiration for creating “Getting Groomed” and his spin on our LGBT issues.

When asked what he would like to see happen for LGBT equality in the next few years Mitchell stated, “I would like to see marriage equality happen and I think that is really something at the forefront but there’s a lot more to come. Once we reach a point where everyone can be married we need equal rights as far as our family planning. It’s so challenging for gay couples to have families. It’s incredibly expensive and I think we need to fight to make it more available. There are some wonderful families out there that are eager to be parents and just because of legal issues or finances they’re not able. And yet there’s so many kids that could use loving homes from parents who really, really want to be parents and what I think is so specific to gay couples is there are no accidents. They’re parents because they want to be parents and those are the kind of people who should be having kids and raising them in the world filled with love and support and allowing them to be our next generation. So I think there’s a lot of work still to be done in that arena.”

Currently Jason Mitchell serves as the Wedding Planner for Shiraz Events in NYC. In addition to his work in events Jason is an accomplished playwright. His most recent work “The Boys Upstairs” which premiered in the 2009 New York International Fringe Festival is headed to London in January 2015. On a personal note Jason and his husband live in Manhattan’s Upper West Side and were among many people who fought for marriage equality in New York. They actually got engaged and booked their wedding venue a few hours before the bill officially passed.
For More Info: getting-groomed.com

Monday, November 24, 2014

Justin Luke Zirilli New Book The Gay Gospel

In this exclusive audio interview Emmy Winner Charlotte Robinson host of OUTTAKE VOICES™ talks with Justin Luke Zirilli about his new book “The Gay Gospel”, a survival guide written specifically for twenty-something gay men that tackles everything they need to know after coming out. It’s the first of its kind guidebook addressing dating, sex, break-ups, family issues, personal finance and more. Justin is one of NYC’s leading gay promoters presenting three of the largest weekly gay dance parties with his nightlife company BoiParty. In “The Gay Gospel” Justin draws from his personal experience as someone who survived his own tumultuous twenties with his observations and the countless requests for personal advice that he receives from party guests and friends alike. A quick, easy, fun read with no-nonsense and sometimes hysterical nuggets of wisdom and advice “The Gay Gospel” is a bible for young gay men confusedly wading into adulthood. We talked to Zirilli about his new survival book and his spin on our LGBT issues.

When asked what he would like to see happen for LGBT equality in the next few years Zirilli stated, “I would absolutely like to see marriage equality in all fifty of the states. I would also love to see the end of discrimination in the workplace for those in the LGBT community. We have very simple beginnings. I live in Manhattan and it’s still hard to believe there are certain states where your very identity can endanger your ability to work. We start there and from there we can go anywhere else. That is absolutely for me the most important thing to get nailed down in the next few years.”

Justin Luke Zirilli is Co-Owner and President of the New York-Based gay nightlife events company BoiParty with his partner Alan Picus. He is also the creator of “Gorgeous, Gay and Twenty-Something,” a private international Facebook group now comprised of over 8,000 members. Besides “The Gay Gospel” Justin has authored the best-selling gay novels, “Gulliver Takes Manhattan” and “Gulliver Takes Five”. Recently Justin also launched a new fragrance Pink Boi. Justin lives in NYC with his boyfriend, Mash-Up Mastermind DJ JoeRedHead.
For More Info: justinlukenyc.com

Monday, November 17, 2014

Producer Michael Levitt Celebrity-Studded Canine TV Special

In this exclusive audio interview Emmy Winner Charlotte Robinson host of OUTTAKE VOICES™ talks with executive producer Michael Levitt about his FOX TV Thanksgiving Day Special CAUSE FOR PAWS: AN ALL-STAR DOG SPECTACULAR. This celebrity packed extravaganza is focused on creating awareness and funding for shelter dogs so they receive the love, care and resources they need to find their forever home. The show airs on Thanksgiving night, Thursday November 27th from 8P to 10P on FOX and is co-hosted by Emmy Winner Jane Lynch and Oscar Winner Hilary Swank who also serves as executive producer. The TV special will include awards and celebrity presentations showcasing a variety of canine categories. Celebrities also will introduce the audience to rescue dogs, giving viewers the opportunity to foster or adopt a new best friend. Participating celebrities include Kristin Chenoweth, Whitney Cummings, Max Greenfield, Kathy Griffin, Julianne Hough, Randy Jackson, Cesar Millan, Jerry O’Connell, Kelly Osbourne, Sharon Osbourne, P!nk, Amber Riley, Rebecca Romijn, Emmy Rossum, Jenna Dewan Tatum, Paula Abdul, Kristen Bell, Josh Duhamel, Fergie, Carrie Ann Inaba, Scarlett Johansson, Kesha, Miranda Lambert, LeAnn Rimes and Betty White. We talked to Levitt about the significance of CAUSE FOR PAWS: AN ALL-STAR DOG SPECTACULAR and his spin on our LGBT issues.

When asked what he would like to see happen for LGBT equality in the next few years Levitt stated, “I’m actually blown away by how far we’ve come since I was growing up. For me that’s amazing that at least in bigger cities, kids can be open, out and proud and for the most part nobody cares. That being said it breaks my heart when I hear of LGBT kids being rejected by their own families and for me this has to stop. I’m grateful for the support of the LGBT community to help these kids but my hope is that we can eventually live in a time where all people love their own children unconditionally and don’t reject them simply because they are lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender.”

Michael Levitt has produced reality shows, game shows, television award shows and TV specials for the last two decades. Among his credits are “Kathy Griffin: My Life on the D-List”, “Skin Wars”, “The TV Land Awards” and “Billboard Music Awards.” In 2011 Michael learned the devastating news that his sister was dying of cancer. It was during this difficult time that he rescued two pit bulls and quickly learned through adversity that his dogs actually rescued him. The special bond with his two canine friends Trooper and Nelson inspired Levitt to become a rescuer in his spare time. Since then Levitt has saved over 500 dogs from local shelters and helped them find loving homes. By bringing his two worlds together of producing and rescue Levitt hopes that CAUSE FOR PAWS: AN ALL-STAR DOG SPECTACULAR could be a game changer for the 8 million animals that enter shelters each year.
For More Info: fox.com/cause-for-paws

Monday, November 10, 2014

“Sharon Isbin: Troubadour” New APT Documentary

In this exclusive audio interview Emmy Winner Charlotte Robinson host of OUTTAKE VOICES™ talks with Sharon Isbin, the multiple Grammy-winning guitarist about her new American Public Television documentary “Sharon Isbin: Troubadour”. As one of the most acclaimed classical guitarists in the world Isbin has made an enormous musical impact dazzling audiences for over 30 years with more than 25 recordings, winning 3 Grammy Awards and covering a wide range of styles, genres and composers. The film produced by Susan Dangel combines performance and documentary focusing on Isbin’s groundbreaking journey which has expanded and transformed the landscape of this instrument. The film includes interviews with Martina Navratilova, Joan Baez, Garrison Keillor, Janis Ian, Lesley Gore, Michelle Obama and many others. We talked to Sharon about this inspirational documentary and her spin on our LGBT issues.

When asked what she would like to see happen for LGBT equality in the next few years Isbin stated, “Wouldn’t it be a wonderful world if you didn’t have to worry about simply wanting the same rights as everyone else has? Whether it be marriage, whether it be job security, whether it be education opportunity, not to be bullied? I mean these are basic human rights that we are still fighting for today and it would be wonderful if that world would change and people could really feel free to be who they are and be accepted by their families, be accepted by their colleagues and their friends and really live their lives without having to worry about a sexual orientation being a determining factor in whether or not they can be accepted or successful.”

Sharon Isbin began her guitar studies at age nine in Italy and later studied with Andrès Segovia and Oscar Ghiglia. Since then Isbin has performed with more than 170 orchestras around the world. Isbin has also commissioned more concerti than any guitarist in the modern era and has won numerous awards and accolades. Currently she is the Director of guitar departments at the Aspen Music Festival and The Juilliard School where in 1989 she became the first and only guitar instructor in this prestigious institution’s 100-year history. “Sharon Isbin: Troubadour” the American Public Television documentary will begin broadcasting on November 14th and will continue throughout December/January on nearly 200 public television stations including New York WNET and Chicago WTTW.
For More Info: sharonisbin.com

Monday, November 3, 2014

Proposition Love Jewelry Supports LGBT Equality

In this exclusive audio interview Emmy Winner Charlotte Robinson host of OUTTAKE VOICES™ talks with Sam Street and Jonathan Tack about their exquisite jewelry line Proposition Love Jewelry that donates 10-20 percent of proceeds to LGBT related causes. Jewelry industry veterans Street and Tack were married in California just a few days before Proposition 8 was voted in. They were part of the lucky few who never had their right to marry taken away but it made them realize how precious such a thing can be and motivated them to become active in the fight for LGBT equality. We talked to Sam and Jonathan about what inspired them to create Proposition Love Jewelry and their spin on our LGBT issues.

When asked what their personal commitment is to LGBT civil rights Tack stated, “We launched a new collection called Love Is Love because we believe that everyone has the right to love whoever they want to love and it should be their choice and their civil right. We did a big launch party for Love Is Love actually in Beverly Hills in which we designed various rings for numerous celebrities. For example we did a ring for Kathy Griffin; we did one for Perez Hilton; we designed one for Melissa Rivers, Tori Spelling, the list goes on and on. It was so heart warming for us because when we reached out to these celebrities, you know in their busy lives we said Hey Listen we would love to design a ring for you to support gay marriage and LGBTQ rights and we would like to auction the ring and donate 100% of the proceeds from the sale to the charity of your choice that would obviously correlate to what we’re looking to support here. It was just overwhelming how many celebrities jumped on board and just said Hey we love it, we’re going to do it.”

Sam Street and Jonathan Tack founded Proposition Love Jewelry in 2011 as a symbol of love and commitment to one another and a pledge to support the rights of all. Proposition Love Jewelry proudly donates 10% of profits to organizations that support marriage equality, LGBT rights, LGBT youth anti bullying and HIV/AIDS activism. They increased their donation to 20% for all purchases made in the states where gay and lesbian marriage has recently passed. For their Countdown Collection they have created a wedding ring for each state to symbolize the historic moment for the passing of marriage equality. Recently their exquisite LGBT jewelry line has become available at Macy's.
For More Info: propositionlove.com