Lavender Country is a band led by life-long social justice activist and the first gay country singer, Patrick Haggerty. Haggerty wrote and recorded the Lavender Country album in 1973, which he pressed himself and sold via print adverts in the back of erotic magazines. The album sold well but Haggerty’s music career came to a halt, in large part due to the homophobia of the music industry and a largely unaccepting public.
Haggerty moved on from music and spent a life dedicated to the public through a career as a social worker and advocacy work for gay rights and social justice. But in 2014, the Lavender Country album was reissued on a record label called Paradise of Bachelors and it received glowing reviews, including one from Pitchfork that named it the reissue of the year. In 2015, a short documentary about Patrick and his music called “Cryin’ These C*cksuckin’ Tears” was released and won multiple awards, including best short documentary at SXSW.
Haggerty, now in his 70s and a resident of Bremerton, WA, has been touring for the first time in his life and is thrilled to make his first appearance in Chicago. Haggerty’s performances are mixed with story-telling that share an uplifting message of dignity and love in the face of oppression and discrimination.
“These songs are played with a great 70s country twang, and their politics resonate way past the final notes.” – Pitchfork Media
“Compelling activist anthems.” – Rolling Stone
“Calling [Lavender Country] ahead of its times is an understatement.” – Entertainment Weekly
“[Patrick’s shows] bring together an audience of music fans both straight and gay who are prepared to fight for equality.” – Vice