Nowadays, the younger set of gay men fawn over singers like Beyonce and Lady Gaga with their outrageous costumes and dance moves as well as their voices.
Of course, at the risk of sounding like an old queen, in my day it was all about the voice. The pipes. And nothing could move a black gay man like someone who could bring the audience to their knees with a strong vocal delivery.
I've talked about the late singer Sylvester on many occasions in my "Know Your LGBT History" posts, but this is a special one because it emphasizes cultural differences in our community.
The song "You Are My Friend" was written and recorded in 1978 by Patti Labelle and it remains a favorite in her concerts. However, in his 1979 album Living Proof, Sylvester actually did the impossible - he took the song from Patti and made it his own.
Listen to this live recording of the song with Sylvester accompanied by his two back up singers, Martha Wash and Izora Rhodes (who later became the Weather Girls and recorded the classic "It's Raining Men" in the 80s).
For many gay black men of my generation, to listen to this song or to see a live lip synch performance was considered as a rite of passage. It combined so many things that we love - a good song, excellent singers, and the foot stomping, shoe removing, self-wig snatching of a good church service.
Past Know Your LGBT History Posts: