BY Brandon Voss
April 15 2011 3:25 PM ET
7. MUSIC: Sing It Loud, k.d. lang and the Siss Boom Bang
Almost 20 years after coming out as a lesbian in an interview with The Advocate, k.d. lang releases her first album recorded with a band of her own since her early days with the Reclines. Emboldened by banjo and wailing guitars, the Canadian crooner revisits her country roots and resurrects Roy Orbison’s spirit on standout tracks like lead single “I Confess,” the flirty “Sugar Buzz,” and a dreamy cover of “Heaven” by Talking Heads.
6. THEATER: The Temperamentals
Jon Marans’s engrossing play pays tribute to the 1950 founding of the Mattachine Society, a pioneering gay rights group, by Harry Hay and Austrian fashion designer Rudi Gernreich. An off-Broadway hit, this inspiring pre-Stonewall drama now opens April 16 at Hollywood’s Blank Theatre. Out actor John Tartaglia of Avenue Q fame leads a cast that includes Erich Bergen, Dennis Christopher, Patrick Scott Lewis, and Mark Shunock.
5. MUSIC: The Belle Brigade, the Belle Brigade
Fronted by lesbian Barbara Gruska and her brother Ethan, Belle Brigade’s bright and breezy debut drops April 19, just in time for summer road trips. Owing their existence to Fleetwood Mac and California sunshine, the folk-pop jams include the pro-misfit anthem “Losers,” on which the duo sing, “Don’t care about being a winner or being smooth with women ... so I wanna make it known that I don’t care about any of that shit no more.”