Friday, September 28, 2012


I admit to being late on the Azealia Banks bandwagon. I was confused about that other Azalea happening at the same time and to be honest, a little exhausted with the influx of girl rappers after Nicki Minaj became ubiquitous. But since that moment has passed and some of the pink dust has cleared, I've been able to wrap my head around Ms. Banks. And I like her!

I am especially digging her Fantasea mixtape. It feels like a modern twist on the ball culture of my gay youth... Mind you, I was in college when NYC's ball culture hit big, but its impact did reach the black and brown gay bars of Oakland and San Francisco. This remix to Azealia's song 'Fierce' made the Paris In Burning influence even easier to spot...

Did you catch that black lady use the word "kiki" in the late 80s? Fire Island needs to calm down about it, already.

Anyway, back to Azealia. The underground vibe of the mixtape really speaks to my inner ball queen. (I'm far too old and conservative in my fashion to be caught up in that scene now, but on the inside, deep inside, I'm sashaying all the time.) Her laid back, smoky vocals make the imaginary pony tail on the back of my head bounce. Especially with this video for 'Luxury'...


She reminds me a little of my friend Dede, who goes by Countre Black. Dede has been singing more than rapping lately, but she does both fiercely... Come to think of it, let's close with some Countre Black... That way I can say I was ahead of the curve (as opposed to late on the bandwagon) when she hits big next year.

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