The Freak Show is coming, the Freak Show is coming!!!!!

Wow!!!! It’s been three years since the Psycho:Drama explosion first struck Bristol leaving a scar of classic alternative anthems, exciting future standards and a declaration of commitment to a truly subversive dynamic. We’ve had some incredible performers spanning a wide variety of genres; from performance art to burlesque, dubstep to queercore and witnessed our friends and fellow party goers revel in the universe that has developed and continues to develop with each event.

DeadPunkBoy and ANT conceived of P:D and asked one of my earlier incarnations to help with Dj’ing and hosting – I like to think that the makeup I smeared on our patrons has never truly been washed away. Our friends Dj Str8, Lee of Duchess fame and Bit Phalanx record label founder One Little Spaceman as well as the phenomenal Dirty Filthy Sexy founders Dj’s Heathen and Glitterhawk have all been supporters of the creation that is Psycho:Drama. It has been an honour to work with such wonderful and talented people.

The spectacles have continued to evolve, our themes have varied and our core supporters have always been there dancing, singing and pushing us on throughout our various endeavours to provide a space in the south-west where the true gay alternative can not simply survive but THRIVE! It’s been a lot of work but I’ve loved every second of it and December 14th will see in our 3rd year of shining existence.

Our FreakShow bash taking place in the Queenshilling at the heart of Bristol’s gay scene will feature some incredible talent – Burlesque dancers, performance artists and controversial onstage exhibitionists. All this and extra special guest spots from LGBT alternative nights from across the country. It’s a major event and a milestone in our development.

This third year has witnessed the departure of one of our longest standing Dj’s  – Dj Str8 who has begun the adventure of raising his beautiful family (who we are so proud and elated for) as well as the induction of Dj Tini Von Doom, who many of you are aware, is my sister. DeadPunkBoy and ANT continue to inspire and drive this mad machine onwards and upwards, forever in the pursuit of the goals they established P:D with – namely to create a space in which the alternative LGBT community and its friends felt comfortable and safe to express themselves and enjoy the MUSIC that keeps us moving. I couldn’t be prouder of their achievements and for all they’ve done for the scene in Bristol! Seriously, none of this would ever have happened if it wasn’t for them and the incredible patrons who have created the Psycho:Drama family and provided us with such amazing support!

So before I get all misty eyed – sign up to the event and get your glad rags together – this December 14th the Freak Show is in town!!!!!

Bile and Bruises

Dis-Charge

xxxx

https://www.facebook.com/events/220582744742058/?fref=ts

Tuck and Cover: The Hidden History of the Punk Rock Drag Queen (part 1)

Tuck and Cover

; the hidden story of the Punk-Rock Drag Queen!

Last time around, I was talking about the legacy of groups that have now been consigned to the dusty vaults of history to be poured over in the years to come – filed away under the dubious tagline of curiosity.  The work of a wealth of performers, reduced to a single word that falls short of describing their own unique sonic and visual stylings.

The contributions of luminaries such as Patti Smith and Richard Hell, Lydia Lunch and David Bowie to the exotic world of rock n roll are well documented. But what of the Wasp Women? Of Jayne County and the Six Inch Killaz, and why is it so hard to find a club (Save for Psycho:Drama of course) in which to toss a weave to the electrifying punk rock of Dirty Barby? I think it’s time for some perspective, as well as a short history lesson…

The catalyst of the gay civil rights movement now know as Stonewall, erupted from the afforementioned bar in New York 1969 following on from the death of camp icon, Judy Garland and years of harassment of LGBT patrons by law enforcement. You see, back in the day, there were all sorts of laws designed to block the freedom of expression of LGBT persons, laws that criminalised such activities as wearing women’s clothing in public – if you were caught wearing anything less than 3 items of clothing specific to your gender then BAM! Off to jail with you! It was not only an act of bravery to leave your house in drag, or in gender non-appropriate clothing as it would be called, it was an act of war! One queen who was always ready to land a blow for the cause, any cause actually, was Wayne County soon to be know as Jayne.

Wayne County and the Backstreet Boys who later became Wayne County and the Electric Chairs before being singularly known as Jayne County, a major figure in the worlds of both alternative rock and LGBT history, has been credited with being the first ever Trans performer in Punk, the influence behind one of David Bowies’ hit songs and a hardline fighter in the riots that sparked at the Stonewall Inn all those years ago.

Jaynes brash, bluesy writing style and snap delivery quickly lent to punk rocks spit and sneer attitude – in fact it pre-dated it! Her first major effort, ‘Electric Chairs‘ released on Illegal Records was a mission statement, ripping and snorting, boozing and brawling. The lead single Fuck Off, now infamous, punishes the fool that wastes Ms. County’s time “If you don’t wanna fuck me baby, baby fuck off. If you don’t want a piece of the action, baby take a walk. I ain’t got time for yesterday’s news, don’t fill me up with your bull-shit-blues”. Jayne spoke then and continues to speak her mind in a matter of fact brutality that so many british and american groups desparately sought to capture but always fell short. Her aggressive sexuality and gravel road vocals could whither the ineffectual generations of punks that became ever more bland in the years to come *ahem* Rancid/Greenday/Blink 182.

County has remained an influential figure on the fringe for years – she has made repeated appearances at drag festivals such as Wigstock curated by Lady Bunny, collaborated with recent RuPaul Drag Race winner Sharon Needles and been the feature of countless articles, documentaries and books.

Whilst County was tearing up clubs across the USA and Europe, San Francisco based gender-fuck collective, the Cockettes, were causing quite a stir themselves. Preferring a rather more shambolic approach to drag, the Cockettes were at odds with the media representation of drag and trans performers at the time, typified by Warhol’s factory stars. Preferring full beards coated in glitter to feminine realness , tunics and psychadelic handmade prints to designer illusion – the Cockettes certainly stood out from the pack. Performances were staged in the city of origin and quickly became notorious for their irreverent, chaotic and humorous nature. Even Baltimore resident and film star Divine was scripted in for one of their legendary shows. Once they decamped to New York in 1971 to put on a small run of performances their star officially waned as the collectives wanton abandonment of style in place of hippie free-form happenings did not win them fans in the Big Apple and following their return to San Fran the group disintegrated in a haze of in-fighting.

Born out of the dissolution of the Cockettes and their splinter group: the Angels of Light, post-punk wailers; The Wasp Women were born. Now, I know I spoke a little about these guys in a recent entry but I felt it necessary to devote a certain amount of information regarding their origins in this post as well to provide a little more context, they were after all, the reason I started this article. Without overstating their virtues, the Wasp Women were FABULOUS. Rejecting the peace and love optimism of the Cockettes, this splinter group were far darker; preferring chalk white faces with heavy black eyes and contouring, skin tight black outfits to the ill fitting dress-up box imagery of their former incarnations and a far darker lyrical content – ‘Shoot me in the head, make me feel dead, KILL ME!’ taken from ‘Kill Me‘, or the bratty and trashy, ‘Fuck you, you queen, you act like a machine!’ from ‘I Don’t Need Your Attitude‘. Sadly only two tracks, a short appearance in the classic punk-film ‘Whatever Happened to Susan Jane‘  and a snippet of live footage from 1979’s Castro Street Fair seem to remain of this group. There is one surviving recording that I am aware of which has been released by Dark Entries on their B.A.R.T vinyl reissue!

 

Get it, HERE: http://www.darkentriesrecords.com/out-today-de-013-various-bay-area-retrograde-bart-vol-1/

 

Now it’s time to talk about a queen who has probably been the biggest inspiration for all drag queens and many others since his arrival on the scene – a queen who has left a mark unlike any other on the face of both commerical and alternative cultures, the one and only; DIVINE! I’m not going to go into massive detail here as the first lady of fucked-up drag is the subject of so much focus – a brilliant documentary titled ‘I AM DIVINE‘ is currently being put together with support from the original Dreamlanders as well as the pope of trash, John Waters. What I’m preferring to discuss here, is Divine’s music and the impact that has made. Let’s make something very clear here, Divine had an awful voice, he couldn’t pitch a note to save his life – but that harsh guttarl delivery was part of his charm. Whether he was belting out rock assaults with as much flash and trash as he could give – ‘Born to be Cheap‘ or issuing sexually aggressive electronica produced by Bobby Orlando with ‘Shoot Your Shot‘, Divine left a mark across the world that has influenced thousands if not millions of people. His unqiue brand of sexual anarchy and the wealth of one-liners delivered in Waters’ movies (and quoted ad infinitum) made Divine incredibly visible. His aesthetic was harsh and unrelenting and his sound matched: A perfect combination of lethal flash and in your face rock ‘n’ roll attitude.

Like, comments, share, lather, rinse repeat!!!!

Love and Bruises

Dis Charge

x

PSYCHO:DRAMA, Wasp Women, Black lagoon Realness, Special Offers and Dates for the Calendar

Serving Karen Walker Realness @Catacomb

Hallo darlings!!!

Sorry I have been so terribly absent, though you know what they say about absence… I have been all consumed with the stresses of moving house – an ungodly task that encourages you to bend and flex, lift and strain without any of the fun sticky ending! DISGUSTING! If it wasn’t for the fact that I am now sitting comfortably in my beautiful new home watching the Herschell Gordon-Lewis classic A Taste of Blood– I think i’d have collapsed into a pile of stocking masks and cardboard boxes days ago.

Now, onto far more interesting things. PSYCHO:DRAMA is on THIS FRIDAY! And it’s gonna be a FANTABULOUS night – did you see the new flyer? GORE-GEOUS!!!! I have the most amazing new blazer for the occasion – it’s all graphic print and grotesquerie, you’re gonna SHIT YO PANTS I tells ya! This is going to be the last hurrah for us in the Hatchet until the new year as we are moving venue for the December show – yes that’s right SHOW, oh the things we have in store for you lovely creatures, you couldn’t even imagine.

DISGUSTING HOMOSEXUAL FILTH!!!

Also, I did a little business deal and am now able to offer you guys something rather fabulous! If you head over to the new and improved Nice ‘n’ Naughty adult retail website and type in my name as so: DISCHARGE you can claim a 10% discount!!! See, who the hell wants a boots card when you get money off sex toys – I know what i’d rather purchase!

Other than moving house, I have been keeping myself busy with other projects. My dear friend Janey whom you will remember from the ‘Black Lagoon Realness’ blog has been beating my latex clad mug in preparation for her MUA contest which is… oh… NEXT WEEK!!! I’m so excited already – I shall post a couple of teaser pics from our dry run the other week at the end of this blog – she has done such a fabulous job. I have to harp on about ‘Taste of Blood’ btw – blood red carpets and pristine white walls is such an amazing mix, there were some good things about the sixties, let’s just forget the optimism. Oh, oh! And people said things like ‘My name’s Viv, short for Vivacious Viv – QUEEN OF THE GRIND’. AMAZING! Also, I attended the Catacomb a couple of weeks ago on the night now only known as Goth Xmas – of course, I stepped out in my finery serving Karen Walker realness – I even wore a faux-fur coat! ANT was Dj’ing along with the lovely Nomyx alongside the in-house regulars and I managed, after dancing my ass off, to walk away with a bottle of whisky! Thanks for a brilliant night guys!

Have you guys been following RuPaul recently? I just can’t help myself, after all, Covergirl (Macutchi Deep Taterz mix) is often featured in my sets, and ‘…Drag Race’ has done alot to bring attention to the culture in the mainstream – even if they do prefer to focus on fish (Thank goodness for Ms. Needles right!). Well, the release of RuPaul’s Allstars show got me thinking about his back catalogue and I ended up re-listening to ‘Supermodel’ thanks to the reminder issued by Manilla Luzon. I had forgotten about this kitsch and classic blend of Larry Tee and RuPaul, Atlanta legends. It’s bouncy, it’s catchy, trashy and all in all a brilliant dance track. Of course, when you pull at one thread you end up covered in a pile of old carpets – in this case, a bunch of persian rugs as I ended up re-discovering the music of some of my favourite punk rock and electro queens. All thanks to the Charisma, Uniqueness, Nerve and Talent of Ms. Paul!

Have you ever heard of the Wasp Women? No, not that terrible horror thriller about the dangers of cosmetic enhancement – we’ve all seen the cautionary tale that is Cher after all – HEY BITCH! Crack a smile, uh-oh, your eyebrows fell off! The Wasp Women were a group in part founded by members of legendary sixties drag troupe, The Cockettes. Preffering a more aggressive style, this Post-Punk curiosity were featured in the Waters-esque Whatever Happened to Susan Jane during a club scene. They performed two songs; ‘Kill Me’ and ‘I Don’t Need Your Attitude’ which seem to be their only surviving records, as the film appears to be the only surviving document attesting to their fierce visual extravaganza. If you head on over to the Disorder blog (http://mythkoz-areyouexperienced.blogspot.co.uk/2011/09/va-killed-by-death-13.html) you can download the sampler which carries the two tracks taken from the film, it’s not great quality but who cares, it’s a perfect example of their bitchy vocals and mechanical drumming without having to spend years searching for vinyl that may not exist. Sooo fabulous! Here’s a link to an excerpt of their performance from …Susan Jane.

Over the next few weeks I will put up links to further artists I may even see if I can upload a sampler in a zip file for you to have a listen to.

Until then here are some dates for your calendar:

Psycho:Drama Friday 9th November @ the Hatchet on Frogmore Street: http://www.facebook.com/events/380217512054748/?ref=ts&fref=ts

Running From Zombies – Fantastic Punk group playing 15th November @The Mothers Ruin: http://www.facebook.com/dis.charge.10?ref=tn_tnmn#!/events/114204352068559/?fref=ts

Burning Brightly: Girls Girls Girls – November 24th @ the Trinity Centre in Old Market: http://www.facebook.com/dis.charge.10?ref=tn_tnmn#!/events/164542166987507/?fref=ts

www.nicennaughty.co.uk – DISCHARGE

The Wasp Women excerpt from Whatever Happened to Susan Jane?: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bmdA05LrfLU

See you Friday….

Love and Bruises

Dis-Charge

xxx