I interviewed Elliott Smith on 6th January 1999

“I interviewed Elliott Smith on 6th January 1999 for 4ZZZfm – but was assuming he was gay, since I’d heard someone from Heatmiser interviewed a year earlier on the station who had responded to the question “So why is the band considered “queercore”?” – to which the guy replied “Because I’m queer.” It turned out of course that it was Neil Gust. When I asked Elliott whether his openness about his queer identity had affected his ability to function as an artist? He responded calmly, but a little surprised, “MY queer identity??” …”I’m not gay. Neil Gust from Heatmiser is gay – I’m straight. I might be a lot happier if I was gay but!” I apologise, and he says “Almost half of my friends are gay. It’s not an insult in the least.”

John Frame