|Dylan Rice like to collect kitschy toys, "I have a couple of Book of Mormon action figures," he says. "And a Rambo lunch box." But while the 28 year-old singer/song writer possesses a goofy cuteness that can be traced back to his formative years as a Utah choirboy, his confessional tales of grown-up gay relationships are as hard driving as the guitar riffs that acompany them. Take, for example, "Lucky to Need You," on which Rice sings of risky behavior/tripping the orgy seen/boys are dying tonight.
"I write about scorned lovers, and some of the songs have been about boys I've had relationships with. But I also love to listen to people's stories, their toils of love and sex. I'm actually a harmless voyeur," says Rice, whose music sounds a little like Morrissey, early Radiohead or maybe even Sheryl Crow's gay cousin.
Rice credits the trailblazing work of artists like Melissa Etheridge, Elton John and Rufus Wainright for making it easier for him to be completely open about his sexualtiy from the start of his career. That's not a luxury Rice's mentor, bass player Chuck Panozzo, had back in the 70's when his band Styx was atop the charts. Panozzo, who came out publicly in 2001, helped mix Rice's debut disc, Wandering Eyes.
But for Rice, both his sexual orientation and his need to rock are really second nature. After all, he's been writing songs since 4th grade. "My mother had a beat-up classical guitar, and I played around with it, listening to REM and U2," says Rice. "With rock, you feel it inside your body. Plugging in an electric guitar, strumming it. It's such a big noisy sound. It's thrilling."
|Gay rocker Dylan Rice takes off with an ear-catching debut disc|
|Dylan with Chuck in Miami|