10 Gay Porn Stars We Lost In 2020

In August of this year, porn star Koldo Goran tweeted about three fellow performers who had recently died. In one of those instances, Koldo Goran tweetGoran’s tweet remains the only public notice that the performer, Dani Rivera, had been murdered. “I realize nobody talks about it, we are unprotected and forgotten;” Goran tweeted “We are humans, people, enough of contempt.”

Most gay news outlets choose to ignore the passing of all but the biggest names in the adult film industry.  Porn companies also seem reluctant to broadcast the passing of a performer who is still on their roster, forever young and present in their website content. An obit is a real boner killer, ya know? Why jeopardize the profit margin? Additionally, performers who abandon their porn personas and return to life with their real name often pass away unnoticed by former employers and co-workers.

Case in point: Roman Heart was about as big a star as you will find in gay porn: 2006 Freshmen of the Year, GayVN Best Newcomer winner, Roman HeartFalcon cover boy with an exclusive contract and a career lasting over a decade. Yet he passed away unnoticed in September of 2019. It was nearly a year before anyone in the business became aware of it.

Here is a list of 10 gay porn stars of note that were lost in 2020. I post them here to prove Koldo Goran wrong – they are not forgotten:

1 Macanao Torres1) Although Goran mentions that Macanao Torres died of cancer in the above tweet, the 35 year old Spaniard actually passed away in an apparent suicide on 12/30/19. He had worked for Cazzo, Jalif, UKNM and other studios.

2 scotty knoxck2

 

2) Scotty Knox was only 20 years old when he died in a car accident on 1/13/20, but he had already appeared in over 20 scenes for Colby Knox.

 

3 Terry DeCarlo3) Earlier this year I wrote about the passing of  Terry DeCarlo after a battle with cancer on 1/27/20. He worked primarily for Catalina and Robert Prion Studios in the early 1990’s before becoming an activist and community leader.

 

4 Sebastian Young4) One would have to overlook a huge pile of reprehensible baggage to still be a fan of Sebastian Young, who met his end in a shootout with police after a high speed chase (3/11/20). The 37 year-old convicted sex offender appeared in close to 90 scenes over a decade for Bromo, Jet Set, Lucas, MEN, Next Door, Cockyboys and other studios.

5 Ryan Fields5) The news of Ryan Fieldssuicide (3/29/20) was tweeted out by fellow Broke Straight Boys model Damien Kyle. Fields was 25 years old and had been with Broke Straight Boys for over 5 years.

 

6 Dani Rivera6) Dani Rivera was relatively new to adult films, with just a handful of recent releases for Men At Play. As mentioned by Koldo Goran in his tweet. Rivera was murdered on 8/21/20, although no other articles have appeared to fill in the details.

 

7) 33 year-old Ridder Rivera passed away of unknown causes (8/29/20). Over the past 3 years, the Cuban muscleman had worked with TimTales, Kristen Bjorn, Fuckermate and Raw Strokes, among other companies. 7 Ridder Rivera modelo-cubanoaI found this post on social media: “Born in Havana in 1987, he was a teacher and those who knew him stand out about him that he spoke several languages ​​and that he took great care of his family, especially his mother. He loved to dance…. took great care of his body and liked to show his followers on Facebook his training routines. “

 

 

8 theo barone

8) Brazilian Theo Barone worked exclusively with the Hotboys website since 2018, although he had announced his retirement earlier this year. He was 27 when he succumbed to stomach cancer on 9/27/20.

9 mack daddy

 

 

9) Mack Daddy / Maximus Sky, 27, was killed in a Cincinnati, Ohio car collision (10/15/20). He had appeared in scenes for Flava Works, Bromo and Raw Rods, among other companies.

10 chip_tanner

10) Chip Tanner‘s death (12/11/20) was officially ruled a suicide, although people who knew him have spoken out to say that the cause was autoerotic asphixia. The 32 year-old gymnast appeared in scenes for Randy Blue, Next Door Studios and several other companies between 2010-2015.

New York City In Touch, 1979

IT 11_79aa

A few weeks ago, I posted an article from the Nov/Dec 1979 issue of In Touch Magazine. This was part of trio of San Francisco articles from gay publications (the other two from the September, 1980 issue of Blueboy featured essays by Armistead Maupin and Randy Shilts).

Shifting focus back to the East Coast, there were some New York-centric ads and pop culture info that I wanted to post, since that’s my home turf.

IMG_1493

 

 

So here we are again, back in 1979 with Issue #44.

Lets get a different perspective of cover model / centerfold Todd Denson:

 

NY1

There are several ads throughout the magazine for CBC Clubs  – a gay-owned chain of bathouses that dotted North America. CBC Club New York was located at 24 First Avenue in the East Village. This branch closed in the mid-80’s and the space was purchased by the Suthon family, which turned it into the restaurant Cave Canem and later Lucky Cheng’s. It was during the twilight days of Cave Canem that I moved to the neighborhood.

IMG_1487

 

 

 

 

I had been living there for about a year when my boyfriend and I saw a listing in HX magazine for a gay bar/restaurant inhabiting an old bathhouse located at 24 First Avenue.  This seemed strange – it was only 4 blocks from our 6th Street apartment, yet we had never heard anything about it.

One night we ventured over – only to be turned away by a surly doorman who claimed there was a private party inside. We didn’t believe him – how did he know we weren’t invited guests? Our imaginations went wild with speculation of what gay/leather/sex dungeon lurked behind those doors. After reading this interesting piece on the history of the space in Jeremiah’s Vanishing New York, I gather that it probably WAS a private party that we tried to crash… and possibly a lesbian orgy.

LuckyChengsThe following year Lucky Cheng’s Chinese Restaurant opened with its now famous drag and gender-fluid waitstaff, thriving at this location for 19 years. By the time I finally ventured in – just once – it was to buy a gift certificate for my parents, at their request. The once bohemian restaurant had become an edgy staple for straight out-of-towners. Lucky Cheng’s eventually followed the tourist trade up to the theatre district. The building was sold and is slated to be torn down and replaced by… you guessed it: Luxury Apartments!

One other note to add a little context: right across the street at 19 First Avenue is Lil’ Frankie’s Restaurant and the former home of East Village Radio’s storefront broadcast booth. This is where my show 60 Degrees aired from 2008-2013. (see & hear here & here)

NY2

 

1979 marked the 10th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots.  Here’s an account of how the occasion was celebrated in NYC and Fire Island, as well as the protests surrounding the filming of Al Pacino’s laughable misfire Cruising.

NY3

Some background on the musical references above:

16 year old France Joli’s July 1979 Pines performance is the stuff of legend. She made a return to the annual Beach Party in 2018.

Wardell Piper is mentioned performing “Super Sweet” at the Ice Palace in Cherry Grove. She had been a member of soul group The First Choice, but this was her biggest solo hit:

I love the passing reference that Ann-Margret – “hot to go disco” – couldn’t get into a West Village club to have them play her record. Sounds like the gays weren’t having it. “Love Rush” was a track from this brief chapter of her career. Any allusion to poppers is purely intentional.

Here’s some other ads – one for Broadway Arms Baths, which was located across the street from the Ambassador Theatre on West 49th Street, and two NYC-based gay porn video companies featuring VHS tapes for the low low price range of $65-$99.50! Just imagine what the VCR cost.

NY4

IMG_1486

I had to post pics of this guy, who is SO 1979 that it hurts. Michael Mouse Hank Owens is a landscaper, a Sagittarius and only indoors when he’s at the disco!

IMG_1491IMG_1488

That’s all for now! I leave you with an ad for lube. Natural lube. With a horse.

NY5

San Francisco In Touch (1979)

I recently posted two San Francisco-based articles from the September 1980 issue of Blueboy magazine – one by Armistead Maupin and another by Randy Shilts. I was ready to move back to the east coast when I came across a third article – written by Dan Turner for the Nov/Dec 1979 issue of In Touch Magazine. It seemed to work as a literary triptych with the other two articles. Also… it looked somewhat familiar….

The flipped version of the shot below accompanied the Armistead Maupin piece in Blueboy. And no, those are not nude sunbathers on the roof – it’s an overlapping photo.

SF Flipped Blueboy photo

The shot below was from the Nov/Dec In Touch Magazine article. Same guys, same clothes or lack thereof. Some people have shifted around a bit, so it was taken at a different time on the same day.

SF IT photoThrough internet magic, I did a little “Google map virtual walk” down Castro Street, which led me to the corner of 18th st. And there it is: the boys’ perch, 40 years later. The pharmacy is now a Walgreens:

495 Castro 18th st

I felt like I was slipping down the rabbit hole. Next stop: YouTube with a search of 1979 Castro Street Fair videos! Sure enough, there they were – captured in grainy home movie footage.

Theses guys were photographed more than the soldiers at Iwo Jima. Call it Gay-wo Jima.

Before I started to save videos and crop and edit and convert to gifs and blah blah blah, I took a step back from the edge. I felt that I had lost the plot at this point. Where were we? Oh yes.

IT 11_79aa

 

In Touch Magazine.

Nov/Dec 1979, Issue #44.

San Francisco: Ever Onward.

Written by Dan Turner.

Cover model / Centerfold: Todd Denson.

There is also a New York-centric piece in this issue that I will be posting soon. I wanted to complete this three-part series first.SF1

SF2

SF3

SF4SF5

SF6

Dan TurnerThat last paragraph just hurts. How could anyone have known what the future held? In 1981, the author of this piece, Dan Turner was one of the first people diagnosed with AIDS. This was before it even had a name. He helped found the AIDS Foundation, People with AIDS and the AIDS Switchboard. He was the longest surviving person with AIDS when he passed in 1990 at age 42.

“…they are not just pretending to be the heroes they admired. They are becoming the heroes themselves.”

SF Map

Castro st2020

Revisiting Blueboy Magazine (1980)

Torso cover 1980

A recent post – the one featuring an essay written by Armistead Maupin for the September 1980 issue of Blueboy Magazine – was my most-viewed ever. This was thanks in part to links from Queerclick and KennethInThe212. I threatened to upload another article from the San Francisco-themed issue written by Randy Shilts: What If They Gave A Backlash And Nobody Came? Several people requested it, so here it is.

But first… a couple of other items of interest from this same issue:

 

Uncle CharliesGrace Jones

There used to be a whole lot of Uncle Charlies in New York City! None of those advertised above is the one that lasted longest: The Uncle Charlies bar on Greenwich Ave. in the West Village, which closed in 1997. And then there’s the one that has been on E. 45th st for 10 years now.

And Look! It’s an advertisement for Grace Jones’ fourth LP… her first good album!

2 tuns of fun

Record review: San Francisco’s very own Two Tons O’Fun. Izora Armstead and Martha Wash had been Sylvester’s backup singers. They soon changed their name to The Weather Girls when it started raining men… and the rest is history. Hallelujah!

 

 

 

PM Movies
10 time capsules from PM Productions. Check ’em out! They’re a hoot. And Christopher Street Blues has a zippy little theme song.

And now for our feature presentation. This article recounts several significant incidents where backlash against the San Francisco gay community was anticipated, but did not happen. It’s interesting to read Shilts’ account of what had been accomplished up to this point in time – with no idea that they were standing on the precipice of a health crisis that would decimate the community and undo so much of the work towards assimilation that he was highlighting.

Shilts1

Shilts2

Randy Shilts Interviews Harvey Milk ca1977_8
Randy Shilts Interviews Harvey Milk (1977/78)

Shilts3

Shilts4

Randy Shilts CRose 1993
Randy Shilts on The Charlie Rose Show (1993)

Shilts5

Shilts Lily 1993
Randy Shilts with Lily Tomlin (1993)

Shilts would go on to write three books, all important documents of gay history: The Mayor of Castro Street – a Harvey Milk bio, And The Band Played On, which chronicled the early days of the AIDS epidemic and Conduct Unbecoming: Gays and Lesbians In The Military. He died of AIDS complications in 1994.

Just imagine what he would have to say about the current administration. Or Mayor Pete. Picture him as a frequent guest on Rachel Maddow. His voice is sorely missed.

 

RIP Porn Star Turned Activist Terry DeCarlo

Terry DeCarlo was only 57 years old when he passed away earlier this week, yet he seemed to have lived multiple lives. His partner of 23 years, Bill Huelsman announced on Facebook that Terry had lost his battle with cancer on January 27th.

Terry DeCarlo with Pete Buttigieg in June, 2019

DeCarlo held many jobs over the years – his Instagram account lists Communications Manager of Broward County, Co-Hosting Out & About America and USAF Intelligence Officer in addition to his most prominent position as Executive Director of The LGBT+ Center in Orlando. DeCarlo became a national figure when the Pulse massacre occurred and led a grieving community through a tumultuous time.

He is seen here in an appearance on Rachel Maddow’s show:

All of his obits and online tributes – including this New York Times piece – have rightfully focused on his 20+ years of activist work in Florida, so it’s easy to forget that he first came to prominence as a porn star.

In the early 90’s DeCarlo was a fixture on the New York City gay nightlife scene, appearing regularly on the Robin Byrd Show to promote his adult films and ongoing residency at Show World strip club. One particularly memorable performance featured a giant live snake. (Insert python joke here)

Terry DeCarlo (center) with Dave Logan and Mark West on the box cover for Lunch Hour 2 (1992)
Lunch Hour 2 (1992)

He appeared in films alongside (although not necessarily in scenes with) porn legends Jon King, Joey Stefano, Karl Thomas and Mark West.

DeCarlo in Solid Intake (1993)
19 Good Men (1993)
DeCarlo (right) with Storm, Giovanni and Jason Lamont in 19 Good Men (1993)


A partial filmography:
Lunch Hour 2 (Catalina video 1992)
19 Good Men (Robert Prion, Bijou 1993)
Put It Where It Counts (Robert Prion, Bijou 1993)
What Men Do (Tenderloin, 1993)
Solid Intake (Robert Prion, Bijou 1993)
Leather 2 (Catalina video, 1994)
Forever Hold Your Piece (Catalina video, 1994)

Forever Hold Your Piece (1994)
Box cover with Jon King and Devyn Foster

After he retired from performing, DeCarlo moved to Florida and focused on his activist work. Besides those previously mentioned, he also worked at other organizations such are Care Resource and the Broward House, helping to ensure that health care, medication, shelter and basic needs were available for all. He was an integral part of the White Party, AIDS Walk Miami, Dining Out for Life, the Smart Ride and countless other fundraising events.

He dedicated his life to helping others and will not be forgotten. My heart goes out to his partner Bill and their Wilton Manors community.

Armistead Maupin in Blueboy Magazine (1980)

59_2ndave

Back in the early aughts, an older friend of mine was preparing to move out of his NYC apartment and gifted me with a gay time capsule: a closet full of porn magazines dating back to the mid-1970’s. He had moved into this rent stabilized 5th floor walk-up in college and stayed there for 30 years. Roommates and boyfriends came and went – leaving a trail of old magazines in their wake. But my friend stayed in this spacious top floor railroad apartment in the last remaining tenement building on a stretch of East 59th street, with a living room facing the Queensboro Bridge. Why move? The landlord finally offered him a sizable cash settlement to leave, unaware that he was ready to depart NYC anyway. But it was a nice parting gift.

I, in turn was given a King’s Chamber of gay erotica: 7 file boxes full of near-pristine old smut.

IMG_1174

Shocker: porn is lucrative. For a few years I supplemented my income by selling them singly on eBay. The shrinking collection has now moved through 4 different apartments in the last dozen years. Unfortunately I did not have my friend’s tenacity (or luck) when it came to NYC real estate.

Torso cover 1980Recently I cracked the boxes open again and came across an article I thought was worth sharing. Yes, an article. As the old joke goes – I like these old porn mags for the articles. Well… the photo layouts are nice too, but… the articles do give a window into what gay life was like before the plague.

The September, 1980 issue of Blueboy Magazine was dedicated to the city of San Francisco – The Promised Land for gays. Presented below is an article titled The City That Dare Not Speak Its Name penned by Tales of the City author Armistead Maupin.

Armistead 1980a
Author Armistead Maupin at the San Francisco Chronicle.

Although this was written just before the AIDS epidemic blew the gay community sky high, San Francisco had already been through some shit, as Maupin mentions in his opening paragraph. The Zodiac Killer, Jonestown Massacre, Patty Hearst kidnapping, the murders of Harvey Milk and Mayor Moscone… followed by Dan White’s acquittal…. I am unclear what “Decadence” he is referring to, but surely it was a bloodbath.

Maupin sensed that the press was sharpening its knives to criticize his beloved city. And he wasn’t wrong in his assessment. Like his Tales of the City series, the article is a love letter to San Francisco, capturing the time and place as nobody else could. It was the best of times… it was the worst of times….

A1 full page

Article1

Article2

Article3

A couple of notes:  The mayor mentioned in the article is Dianne Feinstein, now the senior California senator. And the 30-inch girlfriend he refers to was Tamara De Treaux, basis for the main character in his novel Maybe The Moon.

M39389-3 001
Armistead Maupin photographed in 1978 as part of Don Herron’s Tub Shots photo series.

In the spirit of “everything old is new again,” Maupin observes “…. some local lavender ward healers (that) propagate the Cult of the Politically Correct can grow tedious beyond belief, and I wonder, in my heart of hearts, whether the immeasurable joys of cocksucking are worth the price of being either political or correct.” Yes, he ultimately concludes that nobody embraces eccentricity as unconditionally and as joyously as do San Franciscans.

40 years later, I think those who love the city would agree… even if they do complain about all the human feces in the streets.

Jackie Old

The article concludes with a reference to a novel Maupin was working on: Jackie Old – a fictional piece about Jacqueline Onassis at age 70. Unfortunately she did not live to see 70 and this novella – initially published as a 5 part series in New West magazine –  would not get an official release until a 2014 Kindle edition. Even so, it is not included in his bibliographies.

Also featured in this mag is an extensive piece by another prominent gay San Franciscan:  the late great Randy Shilts, author of And The Band Played On. I will post this piece – What If They Gave A Backlash And Nobody Came? -if there is interest. Lemme know if you want it. (UPDATE: I posted it HERE)

Or…  I could post more photos of these guys:

Men of SF

Retired (?) Porn Star(s) Trevor Knight and David Bradberry Have Split

Trevor David2
Social media followers of porn legend Trevor Knight were starting to suspect something might be amiss in his relationship with longtime partner David Alanson Bradberry. The normally effusive Knight had not mentioned his significant other in quite some time, instead focusing on his workout regime while posting increasingly revealing selfies (one of which resulted in a temporary Facebook suspension).
Trevor Now
Last week he posed the question of whether he should resume his porn career, because ” …guys today don’t make anything like I used to.”  Surprise! The responses were overwhelmingly in agreement.
On Thursday Trevor posted to Facebook what many had already suspected: the couple had split a while ago.:

 

 

Hey,

I feel a need to let everyone know that David Alanson Bradberry and I are no longer together. I’ve been single for awhile now. I don’t need any calls, texts or DMs. I’m doing it alone. I will not answer any questions.

He was part of me for 9 years and I will never forget him nor lose contact with him. We made a family together and so we work together with that..

Thank you for understanding and respecting my space..

-The very single, Trevor Knight

 

david-bradberry-full

Bradberry had been a cast member on Bravo TV’s Below Deck and his engagement to Knight was captured on the show in 2013. In an interview at the time, Bradberry said; “We actually first met during pre-production of my first feature independent film, Bite Marks. I had already been cast, and I was helping with the readings for the other principle roles. Trevor was working as the film’s Assistant Director. This was my first ‘mainstream’ project following my short stint in the adult industry. And Trevor never (really) left the adult industry. I’m certainly not proud of the fact that I worked in adult films, but I’m not ashamed of it either.”

david001

Under the name David Townson, former Marine Bradberry filmed two versatile hands full of memorable scenes for Active Duty and other military-themed gay porn sites.

(I’m always surprised when one of these guys actually DOES turn out to be a real military man.)

davidtownsend2.jpg

In case you forgot, Trevor Knight is a gay porn legend, having appeared in over 120 films between 2000-2016, working with every major company from Falcon to MEN to Raging Stallion. His return to the industry seems inevitable… and not unwelcome. We wish them both all the best at this difficult time.

Trevor2