Story Behind “Crying These C*ck Sucking Tears”

Lavender Country was an American country music band formed in 1972, whose self-titled 1973 album is the first known gay-themed album in country music history.

Based in Seattle, Washington, the band consisted of lead singer and guitarist Patrick Haggerty, keyboardist Michael Carr, singer and fiddler Eve Morris and guitarist Robert Hammerstrom (the only heterosexual member).

Haggerty was born on September 27, 1944 and raised on a dairy farm near Port Angeles, Washington. After college he joined the Peace Corps, but was discharged in 1966 for being gay. He later became an artist and an activist with the local chapter of the Gay Liberation Front after moving to Seattle to pursue graduate studies at the University of Washington.

The 1973 album was funded and released by Gay Community Social Services of Seattle, with funding and production assistance from activist Faygele Ben-Miriam. The band performed at the first Seattle Pride event in 1974,and performed at numerous pride and other LGBT events throughout Washington, Oregon and California until their dissolution in 1976. Shan Ottey, a DJ for Seattle radio station KRAB, played the band’s song “Cryin’ These Cocksucking Tears” on the air in 1973, resulting in an obscenity fine from the Federal Communications Commission and Ottey’s dismissal from the station.