The trusty website, UrbanDictionary.com, has several definitions for the term lesbro:
1. A man who has more friendships with lesbians than other women or men.
2. The male equivalent of a fag hag.
3. A heterosexual man who is either one or both of the following: a brother to one or more lesbian sisters, or, friends with a disproportionate amount of homosexual women. “Wow, your brother really only hangs out with gay girls, doesn’t he! And you’re a big gay yourself, sister! What a lesbro you’ve got there!”
To us, a lesbro is a little bit of all, but at his core, a lesbro is a male friend to at least one, but possibly several, lesbians. This column shares a little bit about some famous lesbros that we love.
This week’s Lesbro: Howard Redekopp.
Howard Redekopp is a producer, engineer and mixer who has worked with Tegan and Sara, The New Pornographers and Margaret Cho, among other artists. He has received critical acclaim and critics’ annual top album picks in Rolling Stone and Spin and lives in Vancouver with his wife and pets (a German Shepherd, three cats and a bunny rabbit).
AfterEllen.com: What is the best thing about your lesbian friend/s?
But to me there is a side benefit to lesbian friends. Understand that I was a guy with three sisters growing up so girls were natural allies and when you get older and you are a married heterosexual man it’s nice to be able to forge friendships with women outside of your marriage and know 100 percent for sure that the relationship is totally platonic. Safe chicks!
AE: Do you think that having lesbian friends has anything to do with where you fall on the Kinsey scale? Where do you fall on the Kinsey Scale?
HR: If Wikipedia can be trusted on it’s explanation of this scale (I had to do some homework for this interview) I’d say I fall on the 0 end of the Kinsey scale (i.e. a total hetero). My friendships with lesbians have nothing to do with that. I mean if I’m attracted to women — gay or straight — I’m still a hetero right?
But if my association and friendship with gay men was really positive and resulted in me being attracted to pursuing a relationship with a man, that would influence my rating on the Kinsey scale significantly in the other direction. I’d say that — if anything — my friendships with lesbians have strengthened my attraction to women.
AE: What stereotype about lesbians have you found to be false?
HR: I’d say that the broken stereotype for me has been that lesbians hate, or don’t like men, because all the lesbians I know have positive and meaningful relationships with men.
AE: What do you think it is specifically that draws you towards being friends with lesbians?
AE: How have your girlfriends responded to your friendships with lesbians?
AE: You’ve worked with lots of female artists. Do you have a different approach when you work with women?
AE: Are there any unique qualities to working with women in the studio?
AE: How did growing up in a devout Christian home influence how you relate to lesbians?
AE: Studio life is like 16 hours a day — if you’re lucky. How do you sustain a healthy relationship with your wife?
So I’m doing what I can to mirror the hours of a “normal” person and therefore be available to contribute to a meaningful relationship. It sounds great, doesn’t it? Well it’s a work in progress, and far from a perfect system. This business swallows you up so easily and you get drawn into a black hole of creativity, which can be really wonderful but the next thing you know you’ve broken a bunch of promises you made to your loved ones about time and effort you said you were going to put into your other life; your real life. Short answer: patience — mostly on her part — and commitment.
AE: What are you currently working on?
It’s a challenge because we don’t have any of the original vocal tracks or anything, just poor quality 4-track cassette recordings etc. So I’m building the song from scratch with help from our old community of musician friends as well as some well-known musicians from some current well known bands. The coolest thing about the project is that Willy’s family has set up a foundation to provide scholarships for high school kids to go to music school and this production will hopefully generate a little bit of income for that fund. We hope, too, that we can build a bit of a story around it and help create more awareness about mental illness and help erase the fear and stigma that it has attached to it so that people who suffer from it will be more inclined to get help earlier on.
AE: What do you have coming up that you are really excited about?
AE: You have worked with Tegan and Sara, An Horse and recently Low Spin. What is the most rewarding thing about working with these bands?
Find out more about Howard at howardredekopp.com.