During his long career, iconic rock and roller Little Richard has described himself as both ‘gay’ and ‘omnisexual.’ But now, it appears he has turned anti-gay.
During a rare interview with Three Angels Broadcasting Network, a Christian-oriented company, the 84-year-old Little Richard proclaimed his faith while also denouncing both homosexuality and transgender identity as ‘unnatural.’
‘Anybody come in show business, they’re going to say you’re gay. Are you straight? Are you a homosexual something? They’re going to say it,’ he said. ‘But God, Jesus, he made men, men, he made women, women, you know? And you’ve got to live the way God wants you to live.’
The long, rambling interview was posted on YouTube in September, but is only now drawing media attention thanks to an article in Ebony.
In the interview he says he has turned his back on rock and roll and has been saved by Jesus.
‘I don’t want to sing rock and roll no more,’ he said. ‘I want to be holy like Jesus.’
Early gender bender
Born Richard Wayne Penniman in 1932 in Macon, Georgia, he achieved fame in the 1950s with his songs Tutti Frutti, Long Tall Sally and Good Golly, Miss Molly.
He had a gender-bending appearance, wearing makeup and elaborate costumes on stage. In later years, he wore a wig.
However, he now has dropped both the wig and makeup, suggesting during the interview that both are wrong.
Because of his energetic performances and outrageous appearance, many assumed he was gay. The Advocate notes that over the years, Little Richard has denounced homosexuality and also embraced it.
In a 1980 interview, he told Rolling Stone:
‘If your brother’s a homosexual, you must protect your little boy from him. Homosexuals are sick. And lesbians are sick too. What real woman would want another woman to touch her? She’d feel like something was crawling on her.’
In a 1987 interview, he told openly gay director John Waters:
‘I love gay people. I believe I was the founder of gay. I’m the one who started to be so bold tellin’ the world! You got to remember my dad put me out of the house because of that. I used to take my mother’s curtains and put them on my shoulders. And I used to call myself at the time the Magnificent One. I was wearing make-up and eyelashes when no men were wearing that. I was very beautiful; I had hair hanging everywhere. If you let anybody know you was gay, you was in trouble; so when I came out I didn’t care what nobody thought. A lot of people were scared to be with me.’
In a 1995 interview, he told Penthouse:
‘I’ve been gay all my life and I know God is a God of love, not of hate.’
In a 2012 interview, he told GQ magazine:
‘We are all both male and female. Sex to me is like a smorgasbord. Whatever I feel like, I go for. What kind of sexual am I? I am omnisexual!’
Watch the video below:
The full program is almost two hours long. The interview with Little Richard starts at about 21:00 into the program.
He discusses his love of Jesus throughout, however, around the 39:00 mark, he talks about homosexuality. Around the 1:37:00 mark, he talks about transgender and male-female behavior.