This is the kickoff to a new feature on the SF Pride blog, called Pride in the Streets. Where we select local talents and personalities and ask them questions about who they are and what they do, in an attempt to celebrate artistry and service and to tighten the bonds between our Bay Area families. Come back throughout the week for new faces and more answers to our prodding questions! (Would you like to nominate someone to be featured? Contact Jake at firstname.lastname@example.org)
First up, a band native to San Francisco: Orchid & Hound.
Orchid and Hound is comprised of 26-year-olds John Constantine and Lawrence Alarcon. The two met in an opera class at a Los Angeles arts high school, fell in love, moved up to San Francisco, broke up… and formed a band. They gigged around California and, before releasing an album, had the opportunity to play at South by Southwest in 2010, Gay Day Great America 2011, and flew east to tour with Julia Marcell in Berlin. During this time they were writing and performing songs that became the Kickstarter fan-funded album, The Boyfriend, released in 2012.
Orchid and Hound’s music pairs lush arrangements with strong vocal harmonies – a sound of the past brought to the present with contemporary themes. The album is a reflection of the pair’s experience in a world where young gay men still struggle to find their identity.
Are you native to the Bay Area?
Lawrence: I was born in East LA and John grew up in Santa Clarita. We moved up to SF 7 years ago.
John: I can’t believe it’s been that long…
What is your day job? What is your dream job?
John: I do freelance graphic and web design, but I’m still dreaming of being a rock star when I grow up.
Lawrence: By day I choose snacks for a dot-com in Potrero Hill, and by night I do what I love to do: make music and create.
Which SF Pride parade/event did you last attend?
John: Last year I had made plans to avoid the party scene and only watch the parade. But, I found myself in line for a speakeasy at 2am the night before and practically slept through Sunday.
What is your favorite memory at any Pride parade?
Lawrence: Gay day at Great America was the last Pride event I can remember attending and it was my favorite! Not just because I performed on the very same stage where Snoopy performs, but because so many young people were there out and proud.
John: The first year we lived here I took a photo of a group of elementary school kids walking in the parade. This little boy had made a sign that read “Yay for Gay” and he was so proud to show it off.
Describe your sexual identity in one sentence or less.
John: Rose in the streets, Blanche in the sheets.
Lawrence: I’m a solid 4.5 on the Kinsey Scale
What are the most attractive features in a person, physical or otherwise?
Lawrence: I’m attracted to uniqueness. And I find confidence very sexy. But my instincts scream “tall white boys.”
John: I’m drawn to passionate people, for me you can see it in the eyes and feel it in the kiss.
What is your killer asset?
John: My booty.
Lawrence: My modesty. Although I do get stopped in the street daily for my hair, but I would like to think i’m more than just a gorgeous head of hair
Describe either a wonderfully strange hookup experience, or your most terrible.
John: I was 16 and was dating this 20-year-old who had an apartment in West Hollywood. I asked Lawrence to come with me to hang out with him at his place. It was all fine until this guy started showing off the puppets that he had made, which led to a full rendition of the opening theme song to “Fraggle Rock.”
Lawrence: It started as a date and it was going really well. I was a little drunk, so I agreed to go back to his place in Palo Alto. When we got there the date took a turn for the worse. Let’s just say he moaned like a little girl and was clearly not in the habit of douching. Anyway, at least I left with his copy of Best in Show and a couple other DVDs, and that was that.
The Dinner Party Question: You and three people of your choosing are getting together for dinner. Who of the living or dead do you invite?
Lawrence: Oscar Wilde, Alfred Hitchcock, and Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky… or Meryl Steep, Kathy Bates, and Bette Midler … I can’t decide.
John: Meryl Streep, Joss Whedon, and Björk.
Where/When can we find out more about you?
Orchid and Hound: We’ll be releasing a new EP in June 2013 and shows to promote the new material after that, so stay tuned!
You can find out more about Orchid and Hound at their website.
Check back frequently for new additions to Pride in the Streets!