Barry Manilow Breaks His Silence on Coming Out, Marrying Garry Kief: ‘I Couldn’t Be More Grateful’

Garry Kief Barry Manilow
Garry Kief and Barry Manilow attend the 2016 Pre-GRAMMY Gala and Salute to Industry Icons honoring Irving Azoff at The Beverly Hilton Hotel on February 14, 2016 in Beverly Hills, California. Steve Granitz/WireImage.com

Barry Manilow can’t smile without his husband, Garry Kief. In a new interview, the legendary singer-songwriter opened up about his longtime relationship and secret marriage to his manager — and coming out as gay.

“This is my life, we’ve been together for all these years,” Manilow, 73, told Entertainment Tonight. “Everybody knows that we’re a team. Everybody that I know knows. So, it never really dawned on me to say anything about it. I mean, I’m a very private guy.”

The “Copacabana” singer, who was previously married to Susan Deixler from 1964 to 1965, added, “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. But I don’t mind at all. I’m proud of it, I am. I’m proud of it.”

Manilow and Kief hid their relationship from the public for nearly 40 years. They even kept their 2014 wedding a secret until Manilow’s close friend Suzanne Somers spilled the beans — thus confirming Manilow’s sexuality — during an April 2015 appearance on Watch What Happens Live. Since then, Manilow has received nothing but positive support from his fans.

“I have not read one negative response,” he told ET. “These strangers out there, and I’ve always known it, they care about me. … It is so moving, it is so deep that these strangers were so happy that I was happy. That I wasn’t alone, that I had somebody that was with me that I loved and that we’d been together for 37 years. We’re in great shape, and I was very grateful for that response.”

The Grammy winner joked that the secret to keeping his long-lasting romance alive is using “separate bathrooms.” He also acknowledged that dating his business partner might not seem conventional, but it works for them. “I couldn’t be more grateful,” he gushed.

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