Big Freedia – Mohawk – Jan 08 2017

Big Freedia is not just a show, but a full on spectacle.  I’ve seen the Queen Diva herself four or five times by now, and the theatrics never dissapoint. Last night was Big Freedia, Boyfriend, and House of Kenzo.  The venue was the Mohawk and the doors were at 6:30 PM. I’m not a professional and I’m probably not that reliable of a critic either, so please take what I’m saying as more like something your friends would be telling you and not like a professional reviewer person.

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House of Kenzo

The music was high energy and the bass did not dissapoint.   There was voguing and some amazing dancing. This Vice writeup from 2016 is really good if you want to learn more about the House of Kenzo.  For me the biggest surprise was that one of the performers, after the first song, ended up topless for most of the show. She was very attractive and proved to be magnetic on stage.  The crowd reacted warmly and was very positive to them.

Boyfriend

I had only ever heard of Boyfriend, and if you aren’t familiar you can read more about her here. This was a smart, funny, and sexy show. The singer, Boyfriend, was accompanied by another woman who didn’t sing.  I don’t know who she was, but she did an excellent job of supplementing Boyfriend’s moves.  I wish I was better at writing because this show is the kind of thing that you want to put in a bottle and revisit.  The costumes and props were very well thought out. There were giant hand cut-outs, wedding dresses, aprons, and multiple bras and lingere styles. Even while dancing and doing some really intense moves Boyfriend was also throwing out high speed rap lyrics. The structure and pacing of the rap reminded me of nerdcore, but the subject matter was definitely not. Instead Boyfriend has her own agenda and things to say. It made me feel good that she was very body and sex positive. The hair and makeup were also spectacular. Maybe after I’ve been doing this a while I’ll be able to articulate this better. Boyfriend gave Big Freedia a run for the money tonight.

Big Freedia

There can only be one queen though, and that is Big Freedia. There were classics as well as some newer slower songs. I was moving and jumping around as best I could. I’m horribly uncordinated, but given the small amount of space no one seemed to notice.  The problem with telling someone about a Big Freedia show is that it’s very much an experience. The music makes you want to bounce around and move your body. The lyrics are easy to sing along to and make you want to jump even more.  The environment is so loving and welcoming at these shows too. I love Big Freedia and I appreciate what she does so much.  There were two fun memories of this set I want to put out there.  First was that me and my friend who went to the show together sang the Gin in My System song between the sets and so it was really great when she sang it. The second was the performance of Ass Everywhere. One person went on stage and then it took the crowd a second to muster their courage.  Once they did though that stage was almost over run.  A young woman was up there in a leotard with her butt hanging out just working it, and that was awesome on multiple levels. In the end I had just an amazing night, and was really happy to have gone to this show. Here’s the Gin in My System song recorded at another show:

On paper I think Gin in My System sounds much more sinister than when you see and hear it performed live. The use of the term victim here in my interpretation is only meant to indicate that once you are drunk and start getting sloppy it’s harder to tell if someone is into you or if you are just really into them. If you hit on someone who is clearly not into you, but the alcohol blinds you to that the person probably feels like they are a victim of a really bad come on.  I spent alot of time thinking about the lyrics to Big Freedia’s music, and I think that the slower songs definitely have an artistic message that you should try and understand. The faster bounce music has lyrics that are more about a feeling, and that makes it so much harder to capture.

Thanks for reading. If you’re wondering the featured image is a stuffed bear that they have inside of the Mohawk. I tried to take a selfie with it, but the light above it’s head casts a wicked shadow. The way featured images work it was just taking up too much space. Here’s the bear.

January 8, 2018

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