Billed as the 'new Bowie', Jobriath exploded onto the glam rock scene in the 1970s – and then disappeared. Marc Almond
salutes a personal hero
Britain in the early 1970s was going through a depression: the naive dreams and optimism of the 1960s had soured and evaporated; life was filled with drudgery, strikes, power cuts and unemptied bins. Against this colourless backdrop, glam rock emerged, sprinkling glitter over the grime. And its gods – Marc Bolan
with his cosmic love songs, Bryan Ferry
with his glamorous cinematic sleaze – reigned supreme. David Bowie
was busy transforming the musical landscape.
The British music press of the time was a lads' domain, deeply homophobic; the rule was you had to be a serious musician who had paid some dues. Bowie, who had been reluctantly accepted, was becoming a phenomenon. Ferry's sci-fi, 1950s-inspired torch songs were considered fresh and alluring, played on a strange new electronic instrument called a synthesiser.