Nick Jonas welcomes attention from gay fans but he’s not so crazy about accusations that he is using them to gain even more fame.
Jonas, who identifies as heterosexual, is well-aware of the gay baiting accusations.
“It’s not the majority, but a large handful have a negative opinion for whatever reason,” he tells Out. “And I think it’s really quite sad.”
The gay baiting buzz began in earnest when Jonas began making appearances in gay clubs to promote his first solo album. At a club in New York City, he even engaged in a partial striptease. He has not ruled out doing the same for his upcoming second album, Last Year Was Complicated.
Transgender model Carmen Carrera is a new friend of Jonas’ and defended him at a listening party.
“I think he’s very humble and an amazing ally,” she says. “We need more people like him in the music industry—someone who’s willing to come out and say that he supports the entire LGBT community and embraces fans from all walks of life.”
But the gay baiting charge has not resulted in Jonas backing away from being an outspoken supporter of LGBTI equality.
Last month, he and Demi Lovato canceled their concerts in North Carolina because of the state’s controversial HB2 law.
He also continues to enjoy playing a gay role on the gritty fight drama Kingdom and played a gay frat boy during the first season on the horror comedy Scream Queens.
Of his character of Nate on Kingdom, Jonas says: “It’s been a great character to play, one that I try to be respectful of and take myself out of. He’s on his own path.”
Jonas spoke to some of his closest gay friends who were raised in conservative families as he prepared to play Nate. “It was a good way to research,” he says, “to kind of build the character with some elements of real life.”