My Musician Friends and I Discuss SEX & MUSIC


Close Lobsters, Severed Heads, Memoirs of Addiction, and Producers of the Word

By Nicholas Tanek



Music and sex are essential aspects of my life. I always have a soundtrack in my head, especially when it comes to sex. I wrote three books filled with kinky sex and an endless amount of music references. There are songs that get me in the mood. There are songs that I have on in the background during sex. Then, there are songs for the afterglow or come down.

The sexuality of music has always intrigued me. So, I asked some of my musician friends three questions regarding the connection between music and sex.




D. Sante is in the band Memoirs of Addiction. She is a witty and intelligent post-punk/goth woman. We’ve been close friends since college. She truly is a fantastic creative force with a wonderful taste in music of a variety of genres.

Memoirs Of Addiction:




How has music affected your sex life?

How hasn’t it affected my sex life? That would be easier to answer. Music (listening to it, being “into” it and creating it) is something that sets a mode or environment for me. That environment then informs my persona. So, if I am listening to music that makes me feel rebellious, I may get into trouble. If I am listening to music that makes me feel soft, I may find myself opening up. The same is true when I am writing or performing music, or a particular type of music in my current iteration of musical expression. Regarding sexuality, it is the track that everything in my world moves on. So, whatever we have going on will be the “mood,” so to speak.

How does sexuality affect the creative process of making music?

Sexuality is self-expression. Making music is self-expression. If you are a sexual being, it is near impossible to keep your sexuality from invading your music. Look at Morrissey. Even Morrissey’s lack of sexuality became a tone for his music and general image as a performer. I think even on the basic level of songwriting, we often find ourselves writing about love and lust because it is such a primal and fundamental part of human nature we can’t escape. Sex is music, sort of. It’s the same thing.

What are some songs or artists that you like to put on in the background during sex?

To be honest, I often find it liberating to NOT have music on in the background. Music to get in the mood is great, but sometimes the sounds you make with your partner becomes the greatest music of all.


Stewart Lawler from SEVERED HEADS, BOXCAR, and Kl(aüs)

Stewart Lawler is a multi-instrumentalist who quickly became known as the “Mike Oldfield of Geilston Bay.” First, he was in Now:Zero, which released two tracks on Volition records .Through that, he met and became one of techno-pop whiz kids of Boxcar. Eventually, he became the second longest-serving member of the disturbed disco band Severed Heads. His latest project with an old school friend is a Berlin school-inspired act called Kl(aüs), whose self-titled debut LP is not only bright green, but also receiving glowing reviews. It is available to purchase at a very reasonable price on the boutique UK label Castles in Space.
Severed Heads website:

Buy Severed Heads albums:

Facebook page:

Kl(aüs) album:

 severed heads

How has music affected your sex life?

I don’t think music has affected my sex life at all, directly at least. It’s always been there in the background, but then again, it’s always been there in the background of my life in general anyway.

 How does sexuality affect the creative process of making music?

For me, not a whole lot. I think some people definitely try to express sexuality through their music, and others make music in order to get laid.

I’m bi and my sexuality is toward the “queer” end of the spectrum. So, that definitely informs the sort of music and art that I enjoy. That must influence the music I make in some way I’m sure, but as to a direct effect on the creative process – not so much. Not when I’m wearing pants anyway.

 What are some songs or artists that you like to put on in the background during sex?

That very much depends on the other people involved and the place and time. My tastes change as I get older too. There was a trance label called Eye-Q that put out a compilation album in 1994 that became the soundtrack for all the all night drug fueled orgies that I had in the 1990s and early 2000s (hah not quite, but nearly).

There was that time a few years back when a buddy introduced me to the prog/metal artist Devin Townsend’s song “Hyperdrive!” on headphones. That combined with an ecstasy peak and a blowjob was an amazing experience that I’ll never forget. It was a great introduction to an artist who I now count among my top ten all-time favorites.

Another time I remember well was when I had a one night stand. She put Lush’s Spooky on repeat (six times at least, but we weren’t counting).

Without going into too much detail, suffice to say, when I first joined Severed Heads, it took me a long time to adjust to playing “Wonder of All the World” without feeling like bursting into tears over all the love made to that song with a certain person.

So yeah, that’s four completely different styles of music that have been meaningful and sexy to me over the years. For a fifth, there’s always the throbbing deep house soundtrack of a gay sauna in the wee small hours of the night. To be honest though, these days, most of the time silence and heavy breathing is all that’s needed.

Oh! Everyone should try doing it on a beach sometime, with waves crashing in the distance. That’s good stuff too.

I would like to conclude by saying that people who do it with the TV on in the background are weird and inexplicable to me. It is way too distracting. Why would you do that?  I can’t even.


Andrew Burnett from CLOSE LOBSTERS

               Andrew Burnett is from one of my all-time favorite bands, Close Lobsters.  The Scottish band was part of the C86 scene. They are an indie rock band that released several albums on Fire Records and on other labels. Their hit “Let’s Make Some Plans” was covered by The Wedding Present.  They have been together since the late 1980s and are back touring and making records.

Close Lobsters – Soundcloud –

Close Lobsters – Facebook  –

Close Lobsters – Fire Records –

close lobsters

How has music affected your sex life?

Sex and music are one thing.

How does sexuality affect the creative process of making music?

Sexuality is like the tide in that respect.

What are some songs or artists that you like to put on in the background during sex?

Foreground. “Electric Feel” by MGMT springs to mind as does Frank Ocean’s use of the backing for his “Nature Feels.”

                                close lobsters 2

Jessie Elsener from PRODUCERS OF THE WORD

Jessie Elsener plays with Producers of the Word. He grew up in Nebraska, Texas, and Tennessee. Primarily in Nebraska, he records and produces music, edits films, and independently produces videos.

Producers Of The Word – Spotify:


jessie 1 

How has music affected your sex life?

Music gatherings were usually where I met several sexual partners in the past, though not in a one night stand way. I met people whom I had long-term relationships with at music gatherings and shows.

How does sexuality affect the creative process of making music?

For me, sexuality and music only recently collided. I came out as gay at the beginning of this year. I had experimented with Drag and gay sex on and off, secretly over the last decade. It was only during periods when I was single. As of this year, I decided to embrace and be open about both.

Drag, to me, was always a separate enjoyment apart from sex. While I have and do enjoy having sex in drag, it’s not the primary reason I do it. Many people in fetish communities, like sissies and cross dressers, get a sexual kick out of dressing up. Sometimes, it’s a part of their fetish. With me, however, I view it as an art form and a vehicle for performance.

So this year, I started working seriously about taking my drag look out. But, I don’t really dance. I was never a fan of karaoke. So, lip synch wasn’t much of an appeal for me. I decided I would use the path less traveled. I play in a rock group called Producers of the Word. I decided I would fuse my drag with our live shows. Then, our performance could double as my Drag performance. Drag, in many ways, to me, is a part of my gay identity. It is a big part of the gay community as well. So, it’s a fusion between my sexuality and my love of playing music.

What are some songs or artists that you like to put on in the background during sex?

Anything from the Welcome to the Pleasuredome album by Frankie Goes to Hollywood. Also, I like Gary Numan, The Orb, or Crystal Method. Songs with a good beat are wonderful. As a power bottom, it’s good to have a solid beat to get pounded to.

 jessie 2

 And now for my answers…

Nicholas Tanek

nick music

 How has music affected your sex life?

 For me, music affects my sexual energy and the sexual atmosphere.  There is the anticipation music that gets me in the mood when I know I am going to have sex or there is the possibility of sex. When the sexual act begins, the music that is on is important to create whatever mood I want. Then, there are songs for the come down or the afterglow. Most importantly, the emotional connection made between the song and the lover makes such an important impact on my life.

How does sexuality affect the creative process of making music?

 I don’t make music anymore. I was in a band called Enkephalins. Trust me. We did not create sexy music at all. We liked to consider ourselves an even more lo-fi version of Ween, but with even more drugs and less talent. We were a lo-fi psychedelic band that messed with samples, tape loops, drums, and guitars.  We were basically trying to make music that was fun to listen to while high. So, we thought there was something sexy but also silly about that. It was like, “We’re in a band now! We have no talent, but it doesn’t matter. We are still in a band!” I remember playing the cassette tapes for D. Sante (from Memoirs of Addiction) and she said, “Well, this is  not a real band.”  Still, I always found something sexy in making music. When we did shows, some women thought we were in a proper band. In reality, we were doing drugs and messing around with instruments to make absurd songs to laugh at. So, when more women laughed at our weird, fucked up, and useless songs, the more it fueled us to make more music.  For me, there was something sexual about that. It added to my sexual energy. I would love to be talented enough to make atmospheric music for sexual or kinky scenes, but my talents lie elsewhere.

On a side note, I do want to give a shout out to Lee Caplan. He did the background music for the live readings of The Coolest Way To Kill Yourself  at several book stores. That’s where the above picture is from.

What are some songs or artists that you like to put on in the background during sex?

During sex, I’ve been playing the electronic ambient music of Brian Eno or Trisomie 21. Many of the songs I choose have no words. I find it funny, because I am an author and I love words, but not having words in music during sex is very sensual to me. Plus, I like it when my Domme talks during sex and I want to hear what she says. Still, it depends on the mood. If I’m feeling like a Bond villain, I’ll listen to “This Is Hardcore” by Pulp. If I’m feeling trashy, I’ll play The Cramps or Primal Scream. If I’m in that laid back stoner mood, I’ll play Kurt Vile or Courtney Barnett. Then, there is the trip-hop aspect of Tricky and Massive Attack. There are also times where I want very emotional music from artists like Withered Hand, Elliot Smith, Slowdive, and Spiritualized. “Rakim” by Dead Can Dance is a perfect song for that orgy you’re planning.  For me, music and sex are intertwined.

So what have we learned from all of this?

A song can create a time stamp on a sexual memory. There are certain songs that I hear and when I hear them, I am automatically transported back into that sexual experience. I may be a sentimental fool, but those memories mean something to me. I may not have the musical talent to make great music to have sex to, but I do have taste. I appreciate the creative energy of that “right” type of song for the moment. Ultimately, music has been so deeply ingrained in my life, that I don’t know what I would do without it. Basically, there is always a song in my head. Your heart beats to a rhythm and rhythm is important in sex. I’m so thankful that I have a good record collection.





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