Elvis Crespo, he's got pride

Merengue star Elvis Crespo says, “If you are a leader in the industry, you are always going to be criticized for one thing or another.’’ So if anyone has a problem with Crespo riding on a float in Saturday’s Miami Beach Gay Pride parade, bring it on. “At the end of the day, we have to live with our instincts and our hearts,” says Crespo, a two-time Grammy winner who divides time between Miami and Puerto Rico. Straight and married with four children from a previous marriage, Crespo says this will be the first gay pride parade he’s ever been in.

He plans to appear in several future gay parades in other cities as he promotes his recent album, Indestructible. Crespo says he became involved with Miami Beach Gay Pride through his friend, Miami music promoter Joe Granda, who is active in many gay groups including GLAAD, the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation. “He has for years had a lot of gay fans, but he hasn’t done anything specifically for his gay fans,” Granda says. After the noon parade on Saturday, Crespo is scheduled to sing at the Ocean Drive beach festival. Crespo says he often hears from his gay fans. “I receive a lot of messages on Facebook and Twitter,” Crespo says.

“When I present my show in different parts of the world, they come to me and say, ‘Hey, I love your music.’ The support my career.” Crespo, 39, says it’s not a risk for him to support LGBT equality. “We see a revolution in the new generation, but we have the old generation that’s still very conservative,’’ he says. “We live in new times, and we have to think differently, not as we thought 20 years ago.’’