Tom Wilson Weinberg

Don't Mess with Mary

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Don't Mess With Mary, the official CD of Stonewall 25, showcases a more energetic direction for Weinberg. Jan Tilley's scorching rock performance and raging electric guitar on the melodic anthem "Bricks & Bottles" works most affectingly, even over a chorus of boys with Big Theater Voices. Here, finally, Weinberg's songs are given full-production settings, most dramatically brought to life on the funkily revived update of "Safe Sex Slut," propelled by horns, poppin' bass, and a mechanically driven drumbeat over Wayne Barker's manic reading of the lyrics. On the heals of this incredible track comes the New York City Gay Men's Chorus Chamber Choir and their savvy and poignant performance of "Before Stonewall." ("Do you know Dorothy? Do you have the time? Have you got a light, dear? Change for a dime?") The title track careens from comic to menacing under the masterful handling of drag non-compare Tina Ben├ęz. The medium-tempo dance track is complemented by a special dance mix, "Dance Mix with Mary," which brings the talents of Plato & Brian Jones into play. Conceived as a benefit for Stonewall 25 and the Hetrick-Martin Institute, the disc did not get nearly the support it deserved in the excitement and shuffle of the anniversary event, but surely deserves a place in everyone's collection.