April 5 (UPI) — Barry Manilow says he’s “proud” of his marriage to husband Garry Kief.
The 73-year-old singer explained his longstanding reluctance to come out as gay in interviews this week after secretly tying the knot with Kief, his manager and longtime love, in 2014.
“It never really dawned on me [to say anything],” Manilow told “Entertainment Tonight.”
“This is my life, we’ve been together for all these years. Everybody knows that we’re a team. Everybody that I know knows. I mean, I’m a very private guy.”
“I don’t even like people knowing the names of my dogs, so for the public to get that close was really very… it was strange that we were even talking about it,” he added. “But I don’t mind at all. I’m proud of it, I am. I’m proud of it.”
News broke in 2015 that Manilow and Kief had wed in an intimate ceremony in April 2014 after more than 30 years together. Manilow, who was previously married to Susan Deixler from 1964 to 1966, told People he kept quiet for decades in fear of letting down fans.
“I thought I would be disappointing them if they knew I was gay. So I never did anything,” he admitted.
“When they found out that Garry and I were together, they were so happy. The reaction was so beautiful — strangers commenting, ‘Great for you!’ I’m just so grateful for it,” the star said.
Manilow will release his 29th studio album, “This is My Town,” on April 21.