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The freaks come out at night - Bounce Queen Big Freedia visits L.A. and the sissies' strange path to the spotlight

Posted by Eric Brightwell, March 5, 2010 06:00pm | Post a Comment
Tashi Condelee takes the stage whilst Big Freedia does her thang

Wednesday night I was mulling my options about what exciting way to spend my evening. Since my brother won't let me come to his house to play Battlefield 2 - Bad Company, I was weighing whether or not to go to the Support Your Local Actresses event (which I'd said I would but suddenly wasn't feeling), watch Departures or The Isle, or have a low-key game night. My friend Karen Lee offered a solitary vote for game night, but after another friend, Anne Kelson, offhandedly said, "There's some Nola thing going on at El Cid," I received a sudden jolt of energy. Of course I was intrigued. She told me someone named Big Freedia was performing. My Lenten abstinence of booze was thrown out the window (again).


             Big Freedia and Katey Red                             A fan modeling what may quite possibly be the sissiest shirt ever

Big Freedia (née Freddie Ross) is a New Orleans rapper from off Josephine in the 3rd Ward. About fifteen years ago, Freddie hooked up with a Melpomene resident and fellow Walter L Cohen student who called herself Katey Red. Freddie was a cheerleader and Katey a baton twirler. The two began rapping together as duo, Big Freddy and K-Reddy. Katey Red signed to Take Fo' and was the first openly gay rapper on the bounce scene. Big Freddy became Big Freedia and performed backup vocals and danced as part of Katey's posse. In 2000, Neil Strauss's article, "A Most Unlikely Star," appeared in The New York Times.

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