Rufus Maximus

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Out of the Game by Rufus WainwrightOut of the Game
by Rufus Wainwright
Decca Records

 

There Will Be Rainbows:A Biography of Rufus Wainwright by Kirk LakeThere Will Be Rainbows:A Biography of Rufus Wainwright
by Kirk Lake
HarperCollins.  320 pages, $14.99

 

YOU MAY NOT NEED Kirk Lake’s recent biography of Rufus Wainwright to learn that the singer-songwriter has a penchant for peacocks. “I relate to their brilliance,” Wainwright remarked during a 2007 tour of his Manhattan apartment, replete with peacock feathers on lampshades and a bust of Verdi sitting atop his piano. “I am into excess, and peacocks are the emblem of that, all things luxurious and confusing.”

The colorful album cover to Out of the Game is further proof that the musician is a proud maximalist. Looking like a bored Algernon Moncrieff, he’s poised in a plaid fuchsia sports coat, gazing at his manicure with a skull-topped cane in hand. So many sartorial songs dominate the ditties within: “I got the outfit for the party, but you’ve taken away the invitation,” he gripes in “Rashida” (a possible allusion to actress Rashida Jones and some feud between the two). In “Montauk” he imagines Viva, the daughter he and longtime partner Jörn Weisbrodt are raising with Lorca Cohen (Leonard’s daughter), coming to the couple’s beachside home: “One day you will come to Montauk/ And see your dad wearing a kimono/ And see your other dad pruning roses.” Then, with a lovely dash of desperation: “Hope you won’t turn away and go.”

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