Johnny Mathis, 82, speaks on camera for the first time at length about being gay, referencing his 1982 coming-out interview in Us Magazine, which did not go down well.
"I'm a kid at heart, and, you know, if they don't like it, then you do something else or you go somewhere else. That was a revelation for me. I come from San Francisco — it's not unusual to be gay in San Francisco. So, I thought it was maybe a little bit blown out of proportion."
The recipient of a 2003 Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award went on to say he owes a lot of his self-acceptance to his father:
"My life has been one of amazements, and mostly because of my dad. My dad had a wonderful, wonderful way about accepting things as they are, as opposed to the way which they would be. He instilled that in me in an early age. He said, 'Son, a lotta people ain't gonna like you out there.''
Mathis has spoken out about his sexual orientation, and about gay rights in general before (including in this 2016 Billboard piece), but I can't find anything else on video.
Watch the whole thing:
Arch-conservative Pat Boone, 83, once spoke about how Mathis's race was also an important part of his legacy:
Johnny Mathis is a true original, and he's been singing for his supper since his debut album Johnny Mathis was released in 1956. Among his many hits was the #1 smash "Heavenly" (1959).