It all started as a wee project for my Masters Degree.
I never thought that 2 years and 140 posts later I’d still be blogging!
To everyone who reads and shares my blog and who has been involved in the posts and adventures and pictures and the T and the shade…
Here’s to many more years of blogging!
So kittens, the wait is kind of, nearly, almost over!
The race to find America’s Next Drag Superstar kicks off on February 24th and following the SIXening preview episode released this week, there’s only a few days left to go before the sixth season of RuPaul’s Drag Race begins!
With the show having been renewed for a SEVENTH season before the sixth has even begun, RuPaul’s Drag Race just goes from strength to strength and is showing no signs of going anywhere other than up and up and up and up!
Accompanying RuPaul on the judging panel are of course the fabulous Michelle Visage and Santino Rice, who will be joined by some amazing guest judges in the form of Khloe Kardashian, Neil Patrick Harris, Adam Lambert, Game of Thrones‘ Lena Headey, The Exorcist‘s Linda Blair, actress Sheryl Lee Ralph, comedian Heather McDonald, rappers Eve and Trina, Leah Remini, Jaime Pressly, Paula Abdul, David Burtka and designer Bob Mackie. Guest appearances are also expected from the legendary Mike Ruiz, Community‘s Gillian Jacobs, Broadway legend Lainey Kazan, comedian Bruce Vilanch & the one and only Chaz Bono.
This season sees (above Left to Right) Milk Queen, April Carrion, Vi Vacious, Adore Delano, Joslyn Fox, Bianca Del Rio, Courtney Act, Kelly Mantle, Ben De La Creme, Darienne Lake, Laganja Estranja, Gia Gunn, Magniolia Crawford and Trinity Bonet compete to take the crown and join previous winners, Sahara Davenport, Tyra Sanchez, Raja, Chad Michaels, Sharon Needles and Jinkx Monsoon in the Drag Race Hall of Fame!
And I for one can’t WAIT to see how this turns out!
2004. I was halfway through my undergraduate years as a lil’ ol’ music student. I remember sitting idly in the IT suite of the University with some friends having just heard Sarah Cox on the BBC Radio One Breakfast Show play a crazy version of Pink Floyd’s Comfortably Numb. What was this madness? It had some guy, all high pitched, singing over some funky disco guitar riffs mixed with a sleazy disco beat… it sounded filthy and tasted good.
A quick look on Google and this thing called MySpace and we found out that this band, the Scissor Sisters, were going to be playing at the QMU in Glasgow, (which was later changed to the Barrowlands… but more on that later.) Tickets were bought immediately. They turned up in The Face magazine- our bible at the time. We found out they had a song called Laura. We also found a song called Electrobix. Comfortably Numb was bought on CD single and 12″ vinyl. We went to see them live… it was fabulous… and thus began a love that would last a lifetime!
They’ve worked with Kylie Minogue and Elton John. They’ve toured with Depeche Mode and Lady Gaga. They’ve headlined festivals. They’ve played countless sell out worldwide tours. They are a multi-platinum selling, number one band.
10 years, 4 albums, 2 Eps, 15 singles, 16 music videos, 3 Brit Awards, an Ivor Novello, countless nominations and commendations and a slight line-up change later…
Jake Shears, Ana Matronic, BabyDaddy & Del Marquis may have gone on indefinite hiatus as a collective, but the legacy of their extravagant, distinct, slick and sly style and sound still remains close to my heart- Scissor Sisters always will be one of my favourite bands of all time.
Emerging from the scuzzy nightlife of New York in the late 90’s / early 2000’s, the group was conceived with Jake Sellards and Scott Hoffman working together as lyricist and composer respectively. The twosome became a threesome when the guys met a fierce and fabulous lady known as Ana Lynch in 2001 who invited the duo to appear at her weekly Knock Off events at the Slipper Rooms in NY; a cabaret that ‘served up a racy, multigender revue of kitsch’.
Appearing as an electroclash performance trio at clubs in the underground scene, they were later joined by musicians, Derek Gruen and Patrick Seacor, and a deal was signed with A Touch of Class and the group released their first single ‘Electrobix’ in 2002.
The B Side, a radical reimagining of Pink Floyd’s 1980 single, Comfortably Numb, became a club hit in its own right and was met with approval from Roger Waters and David Gilmour. Proving popular in the UK, their ‘spiritual home’, British label, Polydor signed the band in 2003, with Laura serving as the first single under limited release.
After a year, Comfortably Numb was officially released in January 2004, with their eponymous album released in February of the same year. Who could have guessed at the time that Scissor Sisters would go on to become a not only a multi-platinum selling album, but one of the most successful albums of all time in the UK.
2004 was the same year that I saw them live on stage for the first time. This would not be the last either, having attended almost every gig they’ve played in Scotland and some further afield as well! With stratospheric showmanship and exquisite musicianship being standard, Scissor Sisters are a band tighter than a drag queen’s tuck. Every single show performed by Jake Shears, Babydaddy, Ana Matronic, Del Marquis, Paddy Boom, Randy Schrager and their entourage had an electrifying, heaving, atmosphere- the commanding powerhouse of energy coming at you live from the stage and sound system was a sweaty pleasure to be revelled in.
Transitioning from underground to mainstream with the release of Scissor Sisters, the band released three further albums, Ta Dah (2006), Night Work (2010) and Magic Hour (2012). Named after a sexual tribadism, Scissor Sisters were never going to be a band that would fit into any musical mould. With their roots in electroclash, their sound developed and incorporated elements of glam, pop, rock, disco, kitsch, funk, dance and much more into a sound that is pretty hard to categorise. With comparisons often made, regarding their sound, to David Bowie, Elton John, Bee Gees, Queen, Supertramp, Blondie, Duran Duran, the band also includes Siouxsie and the Banshees, Kiss, Chic and Richard O’Brien in their influences.
Each album offered something new and different- their back catalogue includes vaudeville pop, smoky disco, soaring ballads, hi energy electro, camp cabaret, ferocious fuckpop and an array of catchy and expertly written pop music. In some cases, records don’t really translate well from the record to the stage, but with Scissor Sisters, live was always where the sound excelled. Don’t get me wrong, the albums are themselves aurally fantastic, but hearing those piano and saxophone riffs, those bass lines, those harmonies, those soaring vocals, being tightly executed by the band, showed how truly talented they are as musicians and performers.
Sex and pop music go hand in hand. It’s obvious. It’s a given. It’s the stock-in-trade in selling pop music. Issues of identity and labels are important in marketing the visage of mainstream artists- the artificial vulnerability of young male groups, the contrived pseudo-feminism of female artists, the overt sexual exploitation of many in order to appeal and sell to a carefully selected demographic. Courting faux controversy is another regime employed… Think any outrage of recent years: Miley at the VMAs. Janet Jackson’s Nipplegate Scandal. The reactions to such are profoundly beige in comparison to the effects that the phrase ‘Relax… Don’t do it… When you wanna come… ‘had in the 80’s and similar of yesteryear.
Sexuality in relation to the arts is a philosophical discourse in itself. Literature on music and sexuality often focuses on the complexities of gender and / or engenderdness of musical performances or musical works. In present terms, the dichotomy of sexuality is explosive, with the most basic of human rights being championed, supported, oppressed and tyrannised equally across the globe. In no way do I mean to be flippant on the subject matter. I‘m not venturing into an academic discussion on gender, feminism, masculinity or queer theory right now. But it’s important to realise impact such issues are having on our society and humanity as a whole.
Scissor Sisters were labelled as a ‘gay band’. Elton John. Freddie Mercury. Liberace. Jimmy Sommerville. Cazwell. Boy George. RuPaul. Pete Burns. Ricky Martin. Darren Hayes. Andy Bell. All masters of their art and all gay. The labelling of Scissor Sisters as a gay band was inevitable, given that they emerged from the queer scene and that some of the members are gay.
Much of their repertoire does indeed deal with LGBT themes. Filthy Gorgeous is the story of transsexual prostitutes. Take Your Mama is about coming out of the closet. Mary is a personal ode from Jake Shears to his best friend. Return to Oz is the band’s experience of drug abuse in their community. Their music represents their history, their experiences, their roots, and their individuality. Scissor Sisters in their music, like all true musicians and artists, stuck true to who they are with their own brand of honesty, flamboyancy, eccentricity, style, sass and fierceness, as many of their predecessors and influences did.
Ana Matronic commanded that we have a Kiki in 2012! And Kiki we did! Never has something had such an influence on my social circle since RuPaul started her search for America’s next drag superstar on Drag Race! I love the fact that they took drag speak and flung it into teatime Britain on a Sunday evening on the BBC on Strictly Come Dancing! Who else could pull that off?!
If you know me and my lot, we have always had our… eccentricities… for a word! As I mentioned, I’ve been to many a Scissor Sisters gig over the years, all of which absolutely magnificent! The 2012 gig was especially magical though.
Here’s a copy of the blog post from that year…
‘We Had a Kiki’
They locked the doors… They lowered the blinds…
They showed us exactly what we needed…
A fucking good time!!!
This kiki was marvellous!!!
The quite fantastic Scissor Sisters were back in Glasgow this month playing two sold out gigs at the Barrowlands on Thursday 18th October and Friday 19th October 2012! Having seen the band play in this venue many times, I expected them to be as amazing as always. They didn’t just meet my expectations though… they completely surpassed themselves that Friday night!
Jake Shears, Ana Matronic, Babydaddy and Del Marquis stormed the stage and had the audience eating out of their hands with every song they played, showcasing tracks from their recent album Magic Hour and fan favourites from Night Work, Ta Dah and Scissor Sisters. The foursome, their additional session musicians and backing dancers & singers have such electrical chemistry that is so tight that it’s hard not to be impressed by their commanding presence on stage.
Kicking off with Any Which Way, Scissor Sisters made their way through an impressive 18 song set list that did not disappoint at all. With an impressive repertoire behind them to choose from, the band played Keep Your Shoes On, Baby Come Home, Tits On the Radio, Inevitable, Take Your Mama, Paul McCartney, Year of Living Dangerously, Let’s Have A Kiki, Skin This Cat, Fire With Fire, Comfortably Numb, Invisible Light, Shady Love and I Don’t Feel Like Dancing
before an encore of Laura, Only the Horses
and Filthy / Gorgeous.
When Miss Ana Matronic demands that you have a
You don’t disagree!!!
In a world where homogenous pop puppets and muppets dominate the musical consciousness of most people it really is quite refreshing that since their breakthrough in 2004, Scissor Sisters have maintained their pop appeal and transcended into subverting queer culture into the mainstream with their unique brand of irresistible art-trash-glam-pop-rock. Who else could get away with demanding that viewers of the BBC’s Strictly Come Dancing should lock the doors, lower the blinds and have a Kiki in their living rooms to a band named after a lesbian sex position!
Fabulous, amazing, kikilicious…
Just a few words to describe the gig! Roll on the next time!
NOW… on a more personal note…
The days leading up to seeing Scissor Sisters saw my inner fanboy come hurtling out of Narnia dragging Emma Strummer, Brandon Paton and John Mullen with me!
Queue my house being turned into the Haus of Kiki with posters, vinyl, CDs, t-shirts, flyers, stickers, badges and a pair of blow up scissor legs!
Emma, Brandon, John and I are avid twitter kids and we decided to partake in a little bit of ‘let’s tweet to the Scissor Sisters and see what happens since we are going to see them’ twitter activity!
It wasn’t like stalking or harassment might I add! Just a few @’s at Jake and Ana and a few #letshaveakiki’s that were gratefully retweeted by our followers!
Special mention to Maeghan Dunnachie, Kara Watson, Donna Withers, Lauren Holden, Kirsty O’Hara and everyone else!
And by kiki it paid off!
So off we went on the train to see the Scissor Sisters armed with Absolut Vodka’s finest in some rather classy and fetching plastic bottles. We had to visit some of Glasgow’s finest beverage establishments to sample some mighty fine flavoured vodka, tequila and the rest before heading out to the Barrowlands venue where all sorts of chaos ensued!
We met some rather lovely lesbians who were amazing!
We don’t know who you are… but you were and are fabulous!
We all bought some kiki pants as modelled here by John.
And to top it all off we met the one and only Jake Shears.
So there we have it!
They came… we saw… we all had a kiki!!!
What I love about Scissor Sisters is their attitude, their style, their humour, their identity as individuals… everything about them! To me, they embody the music and culture that I adore. They have a certain ‘don’t give a fuck’ brashness that I admire in people. Being able to find your own identity and roll with it is something to admire!
I was Tweeting and Instagramming about how it’s been 10 years since their first album was released and the very fabulous Ms Ana Matronic joined in the conversation and asked to see this fanboy article- a true honour- so I hope she approves!
Scissor Sisters are a band that I have always loved and admired. (I know it’s hard to tell!) They’ve kept me entertained me for the past 10 years- a feat no other band or artist has managed to do! I know they’re off on solo adventures for the time being but I truly hope that it’s just an intermission for those fabulous, fabulous Scissor Sisters.
A message from Ms Matronic…
The third season of Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuk’s American Horror Story anthology is coming to a close after 13 wickedly wonderful episodes.
American Horror Story: Coven delivered a grim yet glamorous tale of oppression and racism through the story of an age-old rivalry between the witches of Salem and the Voodoo practitioners of New Orleans.
Most notably throughout the season are the flawless Jessica Lange as the reigning Supreme Witch, Fiona Goode…
Angela Bassett as Voodoo Queen, Marie Laveau…
And Kathy Bates as demented socialite serial killer, Madame Delphine LaLaurie….
We’ve had witches, voodoo, witch hunters, mythical beasts, rituals, poisoning, burning at the stake, eye gouging, axe men, resurrections, pervert butlers, creepy dolls, zombies, acid attacks, alligators, pacts with Voodoo Lords, several descents to hell and back, deceit, spells, murder, scandal, sex, sleaze and the White Witch Stevie Nicks…
There’s a few coven related questions left unanswered at Miss Robichaux’s Academy for Exceptional Young Ladies but none are more important than:
WHO IS THE NEXT SUPREME?!
The final episode sees the remaining members of the coven attempt to harness The Seven Wonders of witchcraft in order to be named as the new Supreme…
Guided by ancient tradition, witches survive only if united under a strong singular authority. Every generation needs it’s leader, the Supreme. No simple test could ever determine the sovereign among us. We reply upon seven. The Seven Wonders. Seven acts of magic so advanced, each pushes the boundaries of craft into art.
Telekinesis – Moving things with the mind.
Concilium – Mind control.
Transmutation – Moving from one place to the other.
Divination – Which is some form of clairvoyance.
Vitalis Vitalum – The act of balancing the forces of life.
Descensum – Traveling into the nether worlds of afterlife.
Pyrokinesis – Control of fire with the mind.
The highest honour comes at the greatest price. Death is not uncommon. And danger, inescapable. Attempting Seven Wonders can get you killed. But perform them… and you are the next Supreme. Your trials begin Saturday Morning. You will perform the Seven Wonders. Or you will die trying.
- Fiona Goode
I cannot WAIT to see how this turns out!
The finale of American Horror Story: Coven is on FX in the US on Wednesday 29th January 2014 and on FOX in the UK on Tuesday 4th February 2014.
Last year was a Year of Kiki.
This year was a Year of Shade.
Last year was full of adventures and gigs and good times- many a Kiki was had here, there and anywhere! Hurrah!
This year I really couldn’t be bothered.
Most things unimpressed me this year and most people annoyed me.
It was a year for assessing people and situations, removing myself from toxic friendships and banishing them from my sight.
I named this little iPhone emoji ‘The Hand Of No’ and by Christ it was put to good use over the year…
THE HAND OF NO SAYS NO to idiocy or illiteracy – this is not something to be proud of or celebrated.
THE HAND OF NO SAYS NO to people who are permanently orange with outrageous hair extensions or One Direction styled hair who look like they got hurt in an accident caused by Hurricane Primark.
THE HAND OF NO SAYS NO to anyone who declares their employment status as ‘SINGLE MUMMY AT NONE’.
THE HAND OF NO SAYS NO to anyone who spends their free time sitting on something called ‘MY BIG COMFY COUCH’ or who sleep in something called ‘MY BIG COMFY BED’. It’s a couch and a bed for fuck sake.
The Hand of No says NO and means NO. Always.
One little word = a lifetime of joy.
The year wasn’t all about saying NO to everything!
There were some occasions where one had to say YAY!
I turned 30
And it was marvellous!
I had a surprise birthday party thrown for me and my birthday cake had a little fondant drag queen on the top! It was fabulous!
The whole Turning 30 Birthday Weekender was ah-may-zing!
I survived my first ever Wickerman Festival
I can honestly say I had no idea what I was letting myself in for but I am so so so glad that a few certain people convinced me to go!
The weather, the company, the campsite, the music, the people, the atmosphere, the weather… EVERYTHING was amazing and perfect and I can’t wait to see what next year brings!
I passed my Masters Degree
I started my Postgraduate MA in 2010 and unfortunately fell ill for what felt like a small lifetime and had to defer after less than one semester… so three years and a medical drama later I finally completed and passed my Masters Degree!
I graduate from the University of the West of Scotland with my MA in Music Innovation and Entrepreneurship in July 2014 which I am really looking forward to! The ever amazing Zane Lowe gave me a shout out of congratulations live on BBC Radio One when I learned that I had passed which was awesome!
He dedicated James Blake’s “Retrograde” to me on air.
I love this song so much.
I made some music things
All the DJ sets can be downloaded from Mixcrate or streamed on Mixcloud!
I started working on some songs…
I was a Top 10 Regional finalist in the Movida Corona International Dj Contest!
I painted some pictures
Like this Fierce Drag Art
And this Stag
And this Baron Samedi
I got some drag art
These FABULOUS artworks are by Chad Sell and are based on some of the former contestants on RuPaul’s Drag Race! I went on and on and on about them so much that my Mum, Gran and Aunt each bought me one for my 30th birthday!
They are fieeeeeeeeeeeerce!
My friend had a baby
My old, old, old, old, OLD friend Maeghan had a baby with her fiance Peter and I am glad that the birth of lil’ Molly hasn’t affected Maeghan’s shade throwing ability in any way.
I watched a lot of TV
I listened to the same songs on repeat all year
The Drag Race continued
The 5th season of RuPaul’s Drag Race kicked off the year in style!
The battle for this season five’s crown was amazingly tense and featured three fabulous and very different Queens in the grand finale…
But ultimately, Jinkx Monsoon was crowned the winner!
The fierce and fabulous Michelle Visage followed me on Twitter which made me happy!
Emma and I became honorary “judges” for her birthday thanks to a lil’ bit o’ Photoshop trickery…
I got to see Nile Rodgers and Chic LIVE
I loved and loathed this song equally
I discovered a fondness for 80′s disco dogs
I learned how to bake cakes
Grand Theft Auto V
I think I know my way around Los Santos better than I know my way around the West Coast of Scotland.
I found a broken giraffe
Willam Belli’s Beatdown
I have watched every episode of Willam’s Beatdown many, many times and they just get funnier with every watch!
Maeghan and I found a dragon in my garden
Daft Punk – Get Lucky
My little blog celebrated it’s 1st birthday!
That’s 132 posts of things and stuff including a 30 Day Song Challenge, a 30 Day Movie Challenge, music, downloads, gifs, stories, drag queens, paintings, artwork, DJ sets and plenty SHADE!
Come February 2014 I’ll have been blogging for 2 years.
For a wee project made for my Masters Degree, it’s come a long way!