Barry Manilow comes out

Now that the initial shock has passed, we can pass along the news that’s been sitting on our desk all morning: Barry Manilow has come out as gay at 73, thus breaking his decades-long silence on the subject.

Related: Barry Manilow Feels Free After Marrying His Partner Of 30 Years, Says Suzanne Somers

Speaking to People, the iconic “Copacabana” crooner finally opened up about his relationship with husband/manager Garry Kief, confessing to the publication that thought he “would be disappointing [my fans] if they knew I was gay.”

“So I never did anything.

When they found out that Garry and I were together, they were so happy. The reaction was beautiful — strangers commenting, ‘Great for you!’ I’m just so grateful for it.”

He’s previously called the headlines about his sexuality “a blessing and a curse.”

The couple, who have been together for 39 years, married in secret in April 2014 on their sprawling Palm Springs estate.

“He’s the smartest person I’ve ever met in my life,” Manilow says of Kiev, “and a great guy, too.”

Related: Three Ways Barry Manilow Has Sustained His Great Glass Closet