Holestar's Queer Manifesto

Published in the 2012 Winter Issue edition of Beige Magazine.

These are not rules merely suggestions and ideas. It's possible you won't agree with them. I do not apologise for that.

Plenty of queer academia has been written but I am a popularist. These ideas are for anyone and everyone, not a theoretical educated elite minority.

My definition of queer is being different, other. Regardless of your sexuality, gender, body, colour, race or lifestyle, if you consider yourself different or alternative to the hetronormative majority (hereby know as 'the norm'), you're queer. There are heterosexuals who are queer just as there are straight gay people.

Why queer?
I'm a biological woman, who dresses and entertains as a drag queen who is currently in a relationship with a woman. In terms of box ticking, I'm a lesbian, but it's an identity I have nothing in common with. I identify more with trans people, gay men, bisexuals, freaks, geeks, fetish types, goths and drag queens than any stereotypical media driven idea of a lesbian. My sexuality doesn't define me, neither does my gender. I call myself queer, not to be difficult, or radical, it's just who I am, a fabulous queer.
Queer may be yet another label but it allows more freedom to be anything you want to be.

Sexuality is fluid
There are openly gay men and lesbians having heterosexual sex. These people are not traitors, they are falling in love and having sex with people, not genders. Love and have sex with who ever you want to. What you do with your bits is your business. Practice safe sex, experiment, play and don't be afraid of what others think. If you're kinky, have a safe word. I particularly like “custard”.

Misogyny isn't good
It's not just the norm that perpetuate misogyny, many tired drag queens make hateful jokes about ladies genitals. You may not fancy women or want to have sex with a vagina but remember you came from one. If you have issues with your Mother or a female figure from your past, get some therapy and sort it out, don't hate on women. All genders deserve to be treated with equality and respect. Misogyny is at the route of homophobia. Casual misogyny is as unhelpful as any kind of phobia.

Express yourself don't repress yourself
Many queers congregate as a source of strength and expression. If you want to wear your difference, do it, but don't use it as armour to block yourself against the world. Enjoy your difference. Have confidence but don't confuse it with arrogance. Just because you dress outrageously, doesn't mean you automatically deserve respect, it is earned.
The norm might not understand you, the weak among them might express their confusion negatively, but remember their lives are incredibly dull and they're ignorantly happy being told what is “normal”. They are ignorant sheep, you're a smart arsed sheep dog running rings around them and an amazing one too.

Stand up for yourself
Recently, a bunch of kids shouted at me, “Are you a man or a woman?”. I replied “Does it matter?” They had no answer. In the grand scheme of things, you're not hurting anyone, it really doesn't matter.
If an ignorant sheep gives you grief, ignore them or be overly polite, nothing baffles an idiot more. They may argue “that's not normal”, define normal. Who wants to be normal anyway?
If they are violent or you are being abused, call the police and report it. If homo, queer and transphobic crimes aren't reported, the police wont do anything as their action is reliant on figures and statistics.

Celebrate yourself
You can only be the best you can be. Don't try and be someone else. Emulate your idols with caution. Radically changing yourself physically isn't going to make you happy unless you love and accept who you are first.
Try not to conform to stereotypes and pressures of body image. Humans come in a great variety of types. Wouldn't it be dull if we all looked like supermodels or muscled hunks? If people don't like how you look, sod them and leave them to their own insecurities.

Gender isn't binary
Gender isn't black and white, there are numerous shades. Gender is a social construct, designed to simplify the masses by pacifying one and empowering another. We all have varying male and female parts, not necessarily physical.
 Transgendered people should not be forced to change from one gender to another. How someone chooses to live their life should be down to individual choice however permanent, cosmetic or temporary.

Be out and proud
The more of us who are out publicly, the better for everyone, especially young people and those being bullied and abused for being different. There is strength in numbers and we're everywhere. We need more strong and fabulous queer role models in the mainstream, not just sexless camp gay men.
You may not choose to publicly announce your difference, just don't live with shame. I lived with internal homophobia for many years, confused that I had to play a role and conform to someone else’s ideals. Once I accepted myself as queer, life became a lot sunnier.

Respect yourself
If you choose to have casual sex with no strings then horray. If you're being emotionally hurt or used by someone who is ashamed of you, then walk away. They don't deserve you.
Never accept abuse or violence in a relationship, get out. On the presumption you live in the West, you have the economic power and support available to leave, there are many in the world who don't have this luxury.

Be who you are. Respect yourself. Get support if you need it. Have safe sex. Cut people who bring you down out of your life. Don't take bullshit from cowards. Be nice. That's it.


Stop the death drug cocktails

It's a stereotype but many gay men partake in hedonism, much of which involves dancing, booze, drugs and sex....all of which are perfectly ok but this weekend, yet another gay man died of drug related causes in a sauna in Waterloo. My heart and sympathy goes out to his friends and family but when will this culture of dangerously mixing drugs end?

I'm pro drugs. I've taken plenty of party prescriptions in my time and had a bloody good time on it too (less so these days as the quality of the drugs available are simply awful and with age, the come down is rarely worth the good times). I believe in legalising and regulating drugs. Human beings have enjoyed twisting reality for thousands of years, why else would so many mind altering substances exist in nature? (I'm a firm believer that a lot of the fantastical tales in the Bible are made up from acid trips and stoned visions, making Jesus the first celebrity hippy).

This fatality is unfortunately not an isolated case. There seems to be a plethora of drug deaths currently on the London gay scene, frequently down to mixing up a deathly cocktail of drugs like MDMA, amphetamines, ketamin, alcohol, methadrone, viagra and somewhere in the mix is usually GHB, GBL and possibly crystal meth. Is it because the quality of the drugs are so crap that people feel the need to take more and more, to get that never ending high that keeps them dancing and fucking all weekend long? It's more likely to be because human beings simply aren't capable of taking enough drugs to fell an elephant.

Like I've said, I'm pro drugs but where does this destructive chain of events end? I don't believe the saunas and clubs are specifically to blame. Yes they harbor the activity of getting endlessly trashed and promote an ideal of desire and hedonism but the drug culture that surrounds it would probably still exist without them. The blame lies with ourselves.

There is a thriving scene but very little community. We need to start looking out for each other and look beyond the end of our noses.

If you are taking drugs...don't be daft. Pace them, don't take them all at once and be aware of what doesn't mix well. Be a little geeky about your consumption, look up what you are taking and what not to do with it, the internet isn't just for seeking a casual fumble (shock!). Essentially, learn to love and look after yourself..not just physically but mentally too.

I've heard of too many tales from gay men saying the reason they pump iron while fronting an acceptable face of professionalism during the week to then spend the whole weekend in a drug and sex haze is because they aren't happy with who they are and feel pressure from the media and others. If this is the case, you need to get yourself some new friends honey.


Leaving Las Facebook

I'm divorcing my most popular profile on facebook and my goodness it feels refreshing.

Aaaah social media..whatever did we do before it came along? Went to the pub and physically spoke to each other, gossiped from behind fences or nosed from behind netting curtains if you're so inclined.

I'm a fan of it. Where else can you get a daily dose of news, current affairs, gossip, politics, music, events, TV commentary, ridiculous pictures and youtube wrongness from people you're familiar with while sitting in your underpants? I find it utterly fascinating, especially how much some people reveal about their personal lives...like millions of mini Tracey Emins seeking an appreciative audience.

After myspace failed to keep up with the kids (poor 'Tom'. He's probably sat in a dark corner, rocking while muttering “I used to be the most popular man on the internet”), everyone moved en-mass to farcebook to mix, mingle and post funny pictures of kittens.
Initially I aimed to keep my facebook profile separate from any 'Holestar' doings but it quickly became the main driving medium for promotion, pop culture opinions and waffle. As they insist on two names for personal profiles, I tried to call myself 'Hole Star' and 'This is Holestar' but a spiteful snitch (who seems to have done the same to other performers) grassed me up. Facebook accused me of using a false profile, insisted I send them a copy of my passport and that to continue to use their service, I had to use my 'real name'. I dug my heels in and managed to get away with being 'Julie Holestar'.

All was fine for a while but it has become messy and I've decided to close Julie Holestar down. There's no shade or stomping off, I've just got a point where I want more of a private and professional division on social media.

I've currently got 3703 'friends', most of whom I don't know or have never met despite my friend request criteria (do we have lots of mutual friends, similar tastes in music, culture etc and will they come to my gigs or buy my music?) and I've asked them to 'like' my Holestar page to keep in contact if they're interested in my future doings. So far, only 154 have. I don't take this personally as there is something more psychologically bonding being friends with someone, than publicly liking them. Facebook is like a mini advertising billboard and admitting you 'like' a weirdo in a wig messes with some peoples public cool factor profile.

Now it may seem silly and somewhat rude to throw away nearly four thousand contacts but it feels utterly refreshing to let go of numerous randoms who have added yet never interacted with me, tranny chasers who haven't read the small print, dull bands who are vying for business and abusive trolls (especially the one who recently threatened me with violence). If those 'friends' are genuinely interested in what I get up to, they can now find me over at www.facebook.com/mxholestar

I'll be spouting the same drivel, its just time to keep business and private self a little separate. And as it seems to be the hip thing to do these days, once the profile hits one thousand likes, I'll be giving away a free track of mine. Because I'm nice like that.


Take Me On : Article for Beige

Article I wrote for Beige.I quite enjoy this published opinion lark


Holestar on Gay Men, Casual Sex and Relationships
Gay men and casual sex go together like Essex girls and orange tans, it’s a cliché but a stereotype that is often true.
A casual observer, or Daily Mail Reader, might look at popular gay media and assume that homosexual men are only interested in random sex, hedonism, all night discos playing repetitive house music and being in the gym getting that perfect body. There is nothing wrong with that lifestyle but there is very little that endorses the alternative, particularly being in a loving gay relationship.
On the flip side, gay women are almost actively encouraged to nest within a very short space of time of meeting. Judging by the lesbian press, gay women are expected to be only interested in politically correct causes, ethically sourced goods, maudlin singer songwriters, investing in a suburban property and adopting a dog, child or both.
There are numerous queer people who defy these stereotypes, though it is easy to see why people fall into them. But what of the gay couple who have been together for thirty plus years and spend their weekends watching football or the lesbian who wears six inch heels and doesn’t do second dates? To stereotype people so acutely is as tired as a drag queen telling misogynist jokes about vaginas.
Promiscuity is fine (play safe and rubber up!). A casual bonk can be quickly summoned on Grindr and discussing random sex is socially acceptable, but what about gay men who are defying the so-called accepted norm and looking for a relationship? Someone to share your ups and downs, cake, bath and Victoria Wood DVD collection with. Many gay men have confided in me that they are fed up of one nighters, cruising, saunas and cottaging and long for a boyfriend but feel embarrassed to tell others.
I’m not a dating agency and certainly don’t have all the answers, but my new show Take Me On, aims to challenge single minded sex culture in the form of a fun, boozy game show. I’m hoping to open up a dialogue about gay relationships in a fun and informal way, so gay men can out themselves (again) and admit they are looking out for love. As queers we’re automatically fabulous but it’s perfectly OK to want to want what they (the straight heteronormative majority) purports to have, though with far superior soft furnishings.
Take Me On is a gay dating game show at the Royal Vauxhall Tavern on Thursday 16th and Friday 17th August at 10pm as part of the Hot AugustFringe. Prizes courtesy of Dalston Superstore http://dalstonsuperstore.com/
After Friday’s show, the RVT turns into POP! with DJ John Sizzle & Duchess of Pork where a live #takemeon Twitter feed will be screened for those wanting to join in.
By Holestar
Facebook event link https://www.facebook.com/events/131097170363276/

Take Me On: Holestar’s Seven Top Tips For Finding Love

Article I wrote for This Is Cabaret regarding my new gay dating game show, Take Me On at the Royal Vauxhall Tavern.
Every year, more and more freaks, weirdoes, outsiders and homosexuals relocate from their small towns to the big city in search of work, stardom and love. With such a large gay scene in London, how does a modern gayer find love in the metropolis? Ahead of her new show at the Royal Vauxhall Tavern, Holestar lets us in on her top tips for finding a boyfriend.
Holestar's dating show can be seen at the Royal Vauxhall Tavern on 15 and 16 August.
Holestar’s dating show can be seen at the Royal Vauxhall Tavern on 15 and 16 August.
As many newcomers to London discover, there’s an endless buffet of sex, drugs and parties but once you’ve tired of cold cruising areas, loitering in filthy cottages and getting STDs from the sauna, you require more than sleeping in the damp patch and the empty promise of “I’ll call you”.
Grindr (other sex based sites are available) still lights up like a Christmas tree when you go out, but that random fumble doesn’t make you breakfast, buy you cupcakes or contribute to the rent (and there ain’t nothing going on but the rent). It may not be considered cool and the gay media would prefer it if you stayed single but you’ve decided: now is the time to find yourself (gasp) a boyfriend.
Few gay men are ready to admit publicly they are looking for love. Gay culture is very much driven towards casual encounters and hedonism and, while there is nothing wrong with that (especially if you use a condom), if he’s not on the dance floor or at an orgy then you’re going to have to change your tic tacs.
Here are my top seven suggestions. Feel free to add your own in the comments.
1. Get productive. Don’t be a victim. Who said this was going to be easy? He’s not going to fall into your lap while you sit there staring into your skinny latte.
2. Come out (again) as someone looking for love. There’s no point complaining to your fag hag that all men are bastards. Get out and meet people, advertise, tell your friends and put yourself out there.
3. When advertising, be honest and upfront about what you want. When you go to a restaurant, you don’t say “give me something edible”. No, you order what you enjoy. Why should dating be any different? Be direct in what you want: “I do this, I like that.” Go for what you want, don’t settle and be confident.
4. Don’t be too specific. Just because you both share a love of obscure ABBA B-Sides and organic flour, it doesn’t mean that it’s meant to be. Compatibility is more about personality and common interests than absolute ones.
5. Avoid body fascists. They’re not happy with themselves and won’t have much time for you.
6. Be honest. Cut the mind games, phone politics and childish crap.  You’re a grown man now. Talk, if you like him say so. If it’s not working out for you, say so. If this weirds him out, he clearly isn’t worth your time — move on and repeat as necessary.
7. Believe in yourself. Stay strong and keep on trucking. And if all else fails, get yourself a dog.
Alternatively, you can enter my dating show for gay men. Take Me On will be at the Royal Vauxhall Tavern on Thursday 16th and Friday 17th August as part of their Hot August Fringe. I can’t guarantee I’ll find you love, but at least we’ll have fun trying. Enter via my website www.holestar.com.

World Pride London?

2012 is a big year for London. The Queen has just had her jubilee and the Olympics are around the corner. The sandwich filling is some limp cheese and a damp lettuce leaf. This Saturday, London hosts World Pride.

Social media has been going batshit recently about London Pride going tits up (and it's been good to see people be so pasisonate about it). To summerise; What should have been a huge global event for the capital has been reduced to a bimble down the road.
* There will be no vehicles or floats on the procession (though shopping trolleys will be allowed, apparently).
* Procession is now starting at 11am (I’ve yet to know a queer to be awake before 12pm at the weekend...unless they are crawling out of a club or gay dolphins (all muscles, no hair) off to the gym).
* There will be no road closures or after party in Soho.
* Club owners, managers, promoters and journalists from the gay scene have publicly slated and stated no confidence in the event.
* Money was offered late in the game, but licenses were not in place.
* Boris couldn't give a crap and has blocked Peter Tatchell from speaking at the rally in Trafalgar.
* Elton Jane walked away from the Pride House proceedings some time ago.
* The chair of the board has stepped down.

All a bit embarrassing really...

World Pride London should have been the queer Olympics. The committee has had two years to sort it out and to pull the parade (now procession) this late and dress it up as “going back to it’s activist routes” so late in the game is patronising bull poop. I’d love it if it really was about marking international homophobia and injuctice but lets not forget, London Pride changed the march to ‘parade’ sometime ago...so what’s it to be? Politics or party?

Even before the shit hit the fan, the line up of entertainment was not what you’d expect from a world event. It’s all good having a few drag queens and Boy George do a turn in a Philip Treacy hat but Deborah Cox to headline? She is a fabulous singer but very few people over here have a clue who she is. To put it into context, EuroPride 2011 in Rome had Lady GaGa. (Whatever you think of her music and attention seeking, you can’t deny the girl bangs the gay drum loudly and gets mainstream press attention for it, which can only be a good thing).

Deborah Cox is from Toronto which is the next city to host World Pride in 2014. But wait...electro goddess Peaches is also from Toronto, could they not pop her over on easyjet from Berlin?
Perhaps she’s too fringe or obscure? Deborah has 43k likes on Facebook, Peaches has 245k. Facebook 'likes' are hardly a reliable taste or quality gauge but that’s one hell of a difference and how queer is Peaches?! (Other Canadian popstars that could have been considered; Nelly Furtado, K.D. Lang, Celine Dion, Alanis Morissette, Shania Twain, Avril Lavine and everyone’s favorite lesbian, Justin Bieber).

Moving on to the afterparty....the official London World Pride after bash is porn star buffet, HustlaBall, sponsored by Rentboy.com. Well that's inclusive (...sound the sarcasm klaxon).
HustlaBalls does not represent most of London based LGBTQI people, only a mere commodifiable fraction. Sex sells but the assumption that every gay male is a waxed, hung and available is outdated and clichéd. (I’ll stop here. I’ve already rambled about this on another blog)

Pride used to be both fun and political but has been going down the u bend for sometime now. It’s current incarnation isn't inclusive and doesn’t represent me as a tutti fruity queer woman. Good luck to whoever, if anyone, picks up the mess made but it’s about time Pride London had a shake down. There have been calls for the whole board to resign and a full investigation to what went so wrong but once Saturday is over and the discarded whistles thrown to the curb, I can’t see many people bothering to care. Many will go back to pictures of LOL cats, the new series of X-Factor and a puddle of apathy.

My ideal Pride would be a peaceful, positive march, honoring those with less rights than our own and highlighting the inequality of LGBTQI people  (yes it's pretty darn good in the UK right now but we've still a way to go). 
This would be followed by a huge party full of queers, twinks, BDSM, bears, drag artists, scallys, suits, geeks, clones, jocks, goths, average folk, fashion kids, women, men, gender benders, intersex, cis and trans people, artists, disabled, young, pretty, ugly, old, fat, thin, round, square, black, white, purple, blue, green, yellow, orange, red and all those many glorious shades in between (basically, people) where everyone can shake off their labels and guests to our glorious capital can sample the wonderful diversity we have.

P.S. Unfortunately I won’t be mincing in a shopping trolley as I've got work commitments outside London but all the best who do attend. Be safe, be proud and please be nice to the volunteers.

P.P.S. To the annonoymous person who called me an attention seeking narcissist on my last blog. Well yes...it’s my job. What part of the Holestar memo did you not get?

The Dogs Bollocks

Last night I DJed at a place where the system kept tripping out so got up and did a show of sorts...show must go on and all that. Afterwards, got talking to two guys who wanted to manage me, how marvelous blah blah. Then told them about a project I'm doing and things went rather tits up.

My partner and I decided to castrate our adopted dog Huxley (as in Aldous…one of our mutually favorite books is Brave New World). Most vets recommend it for city dogs and though it may be against his nature, didn't want him fathering unwanted puppies. He’s quite small and don't want him getting attacked by aggressive dogs, especially the many Staffordshire Bull Terriers in the area (they can be lovely dogs but many owners around here teach them to be violent. Battersea Dogs Home is full of Staffs that can’t be homed because people can’t be arsed to train the poor things).
Rather than send his discarded testicles to the incinerator, I plan to recycle them, make some 'wearable art' and do a photo shoot with the caption “The Dogs Bollocks”.

Was then told (rather loudly and aggressively) I was an evil woman, disgusting and a nazi. How dare I glorify his loss?  I asked if Damien Hirst’s animals in formaldehyde were ok...I was told yes because he is an established artist and I'm not. (I have the same MA in Fine Art as Mr Hirst but don't have the same entrepreneurial drive and quite happy expressing myself in other ways thanks very much).

Eventually got up and went to the dressing room, they then banged on the door and screamed of my evility some more. For someone who considers themselves quite tough, I felt rather threatened.

There is no reasoning with fundamentalists, whether their thing is animals, religion, politics or Madonna, their mind is already firmly made up. It was interesting to be challenged and I was up for discussion but when I'm screamed at and compared to evil scum, well there really is little point. I wonder if it would have been different if I was using anonymous testicles from a butcher. I don’t intend to lord it up being dominant over an animal but the whole purpose of using his parts is its personal from a dog I adore rather than a random animal.

'The Dogs Bollocks" earrings is a simple creative statement, a play on British slang and a piss take of fashion. He was not hurt during the process and is a happy, loved and wonderful pooch. I don't want to offend or intend to be provocative, just happen to be drawn to the bizarre and comical. Many of my creative idols tend to be a little controversial (Robert Mapplethorpe, Annie Sprinke, Helmut Newton, Andres Serrano, John Waters, Chris Morris, Bret Easton Ellis) and that inspires and forms my outlook, so I’m not going to apologise for having twisted ideas. Just don’t expect to be attacked for them.

Anyway, I’m off to play with  Huxley in the park.


P.S. Busy week coming up, my night Lets Get Quizzical, Wotever World Pride (where I'll be having a ramble about the London Pride shambles) and then off to DJ in Dorset at Lush Fest. How lovely.

Respect... James Baillie

Realised I haven't done one of these for a while. Others in the 'Respect' series are David Hoyle, Peter Tatchell and Scottee.
This one is about a man who has created something queer Londoners can be proud of...Mr James Baillie.

For three years now, James has been the organiser of 'Out and Out Fierce!' Sundays at Lovebox Festival which celebrates queerness and diversity without having to bang on about it. He is the man behind legendary 90s club Venus and has worked with some of the greatest musicians and DJs the UK has to offer. This year was another stellar day with music legends across the board (to name but a few; Grace Jones, Chaka Khan, Nile Rodgers, Tiga, Felix Da Housecat, Andrew Weatherall and and and and) but unfortunately didn't get to see anyone myself. (Was on the main stage with Jonny Woo before hosting and singing at the worlds best nightclub, the NYC Downlow...hark at me.)

I feel proud to be queer performing at Lovebox. It shys away from gay club cliches (as commented on in my blog The dull face of the 'generic gay') and focuses on quality music. This is its strength. It doesn't need muscles in pants, pink cowboy hats and rainbow flags to celebrate who we are; people who want a good time who just happen to be queer. It was a brilliant, very well attended day and I hope some of the gays who don't usually come east saw something different to what they are usually served on the commercial gay scene.

James deserves super props for bringing something so positive, accessible and of top quality to the capital.  He had a lot to deal with this year and could still be seen walking around with a smile on his face. He knows good music and isn't afraid to show it.

I'm out and proud but shan't be showing it off at London Gay Pride on 7th July. With London hosting World Pride this year, I would have thought there would be a stellar production it being post Jubilee and pre Olympics. Unfortunately Pride disappeared down the lavatory some time ago and is crumbling with fall outs, money issues and a lack of knowing what people want. With Deborah Cox headlining (guessing Hazel Dean and Heather Small were unavailable),  HustlaBall (porn stars galore) hosting the official after party and the usual predictable dross, it's not going to be an event that showcases the diversity gay London has to offer. Pride could learn a lot from James Baillie.


P.S. A London gay event later this year worth noting is Summer Rites. I might be performing, yet to be confirmed.

Paris Hilton dies onstage

Since it was announced, it was inevitable that Paris Hilton getting paid thousands to throw bricks into a washing machine in the name of DJing was going to be bad.

Poor Paris...her fame has waned considerably due to fellow succubus Kim Kardashian. She's tried everything (party girl, music, film, TV, lame sex tape) and earned millions in the process yet refuses to give up. What's left to do? She's got a DJ/producer boyfriend, surely she should cash in on her name and become a DJ herself? That's hot...

Money is the only currency here, not an interest in good music or happy punters. The kind of music she tried to play is aimed at popping bottles and naff VIP crowd, a celeb name generates bums on seats. Celebrity DJs aren't a new phenomena, look at any fashion launch or hipster party and you'll see someone being hired because of their so-called cool factor or fame, at every level. It just means rubbish music.

Most lady DJs love music. Yes a minority get gigs by taking their tops off and dancing around to a premix CD, sucking dick or flirting with the right people but on the whole, we love and respect music. We have a background knowledge of it. We learn it's history. As much as I think she's an air thief, I want other women to do well in this industry. A part of me hoped Paris would have hired a fleet of experienced DJs to teach her how to mix properly instead of driving the car off the cliff so publicly. I have a smug sense of 'I told you so' but a sadness that women DJing continues to be looked upon as something lesser.

Female DJs work hard to be taken seriously as it is without people assuming we don't know anything (the sexism I've encountered from male DJs is staggering). Yes I'm aware that I've been booked on my novelty Tranny with a Fanny factor but I've been re-booked because I'm a DJ with passion and have a narcissism that loves a happy dance floor.

Promoters. Get a clue. Celeb names might get them in initially but people spending their money want something on return, not a crap soundtrack to their fun times.

Paris. We know this is just another of your many fads so please go away and stop dragging down Disc Jockeys and women down into your pit of nothingness. Go and spend your millions on something worth while, swaying around the mixer pretending to use the filters isn't a skill or talent.
Or just take your top off..that'd be far more entertaining.


Calling yourself 'tranny' is the new club kid...

Thanks to Ma Butcher for this
Me and my big mouth..... I posted the above subject line on Facebook last night and hilarity ensued. 

(Things is, others have said the same, yet as I moan publicly, the bitcherati get a fall girl. 
And to clarify...this comment has nothing do to with transgender people but those on the alternative drag scene (myself included) who refer to themselves as trannies.)

Tranny....the word is prefixed with TRANS...transform, translate, transport, transmutate ...to change or go from one thing to another. When someone refers themselves as a tranny, I'd like to think they start out one thing and end up something completely different.

Now this can take form in various ways...some spend vast amounts of money on couture, others go the local pound shop or rifle through bins to source their look. Some craft their makeup like sculpture, others throw some glitter on and hope for the best. It's all good.  I don't believe in label snobbery and anyone who transforms with a smile and challenges mainstream dross deserves applause and love.


This weekend, I worked and performed at the worlds best club, NYC Downlow at the Lovebox Festival. On Saturday, the girls pulled some great looks, worked their butts off and were rather marvelous.
Sunday, some turned up, shoved a nasty wig on their heads, didn't contribute to the Downlow in any way, expected special attention, bitched, complained and moaned . These are the people I have a problem with.
They sat backstage being louche, pouty, did sod all and drank all the booze meant for those who were working. Honey...why sit back there? If you're dressing for attention, get out there and take it to the people because that's where the party is.

I've worked at the Downlow from it's first outing at Glastonbury in 2007. Maybe I shouldn't, but I care about it being fabulous and successful. When you book an actor, DJ, comedian, acrobat or anyone from the field of entertainment, you expect them to have knowledge, enthusiasm and passion for their craft. I blindly hope trannies, regardless of experience, to have the same. I'm really not arsed if they're polished or not, just that they bring something instead of taking.

This isn't a dig at club kids or trannies..just a moan about the lazy. I shouldn't care but I do. So there.

Holestar and Jonny Woo Photo by Tony Wood
On a lighter note....overall, was a great weekend and we were relativity unscathed by the weather. I missed Chic, Chaka and Grace but performed a new Warboy track, Dressed as a Girl with Jonny Woo on the main stage, introduced legends Optimo, Andrew Weatherall and Penny Arcade at the Downlow before dragging myself home (had planned for after party but the bones said no.)

I'm going all establishment tomorrow evening (Thurs 21st June) and DJing at the National Portrait Gallery for their Queen exhibition where I'll be playing 60 years of pop queens. Well jiggle my tits!


The dull face of the 'generic gay'

Really should be rehearsing for tonight’s shows but I'm annoyed....(gets out soap box).

Gaydar (whose radio show I have appeared on and am never likely to again after this) placed a vending machine of men in Soho. So far, so good PR stunt.
Now I have nothing against those who spend every waking hour worrying about their perfect abs and buns or those who lust after them but where is the diversity here? It'd be like walking up to a sweet machine and find they only provide one type of candy. Something I'd always admired about gay males is the range of diversity on offer (unlike lady lovers who still have the populist clichés of femme and butch). 

Gays, queers, trans and other have always been outsiders from the majority. I'd hope that by being an outsider, we'd know what it is to be different and able to embrace and celebrate that diversity. It appears that we've been through so much liberation that what used to make us unique has been reduced down to everything looking and being the same...in a pair of pants.

I'm first to fight for my queer siblings against homophobia but I find myself drifting further and further away from what mainstream gay culture is offering me. Soho makes me wince with embarrassment and Vauxhall (except the RVT and Eagle) make me cringe. I love the idea of doing one of my events at a big gay super club but with the same old stuff being pumped out again and again, it's looking very unlikely.

Using my fathers fruit analogy of when I came out to him (“Well...I always thought you were a bit fruity”), queers, we're a bunch of fruits. Fruit comes in a wide selection of sizes, shapes, colours and tastes and we should be represented as the wonderful variations we are. Give me a fruit salad, not just a pair of plums.

From the reaction on my Facebook after posting this image, I am not the only one, so wake up Gaydar....not all gay men lust after hunks in trunks, give us a fruit salad.

While you're at it, can you sort out your music policy? That's all rather one dimensional too. Thanks.


P.S. Self loathing is eating people up. Be who you want to be. No matter what your body shape, build, lack of this or too much of that, love yourself first and fore mostly. You know I'm right ;-)

UPDATE Received this on my Twitter from Gaydar

 Thanks for your feedback! This was the vending machine's first outing, so watch this space for a variety of new 'stock' in future.

Which is rather odd. Still treating gays as commodities..sigh......

Queens in Time Out Magazine

Varda her eek!
The others were The Queen (who was considered London's best with 28 Corgies out of 30), Maisie Trollete, Titi La Camp, Myra Dubois and Son of a Tutu, all well established on the gay cabaret circuit.
I'm somewhat of an outsider here but its still nice to get a nod in mainstream press and that my gender isn't relevant here.

For Jubilee weekend, I'll be DJing disco and Hi-NRG on Saturday at QUEEN. Then premiering new work on the cabaret stage at The Apple Cart Festival on Sunday.


Apple Cart Fest & Podcast

So...I'm premiering new work this Sunday at The Apple Cart Festival  Rather than stand on stage and sing straight forward songs, I'm creating megamixes using spoken word and song around different themes. Essentially Jive Bunny in a wig.

Anyway...did a podcast for London Fields Radio with some of the other amazing performers on the cabaret stage. I pop up around 7 minutes.

Listen to the show HERE

Cabaret Stage Lineup

A Man To Pet | Bourgeois and Maurice | Dickie Beau | DJ Squeaky | Fancy Chance | Hitman Hearn | Holly Penfield | Holestar | I Am Fya | John Sizzle | Kiki Kaboom | Mae Martin | Mr Teds | Myra DuBois | Piff The Magic Dragon | Ryan Styles | Sister Mister | The Fabulous Russella | The LipSinkers |Timberlina | Up & Over It |  Willis


Mainstream, me?

 Last night I was told three things.

1) I should go on a diet (Yes I could do with getting fit but diets do. not. work. and I'm not too bothered about my size).

2) I was the most beautiful woman in the room (By the legend that is Lady Miss Kier herself).

3) That I should go mainstream. (Wah?!)

Now while I'm not adverse to crossing over (on my own terms of course) the likeliness of this happening is utterly minuscule. Can you imagine....”And coming up next on This Morning, Tranny with a Fanny, Holestar shares her tips on boil washing nappies and making shortbread”.

But where would I be placed if I wanted to pursue mainstream success especially as I've chosen not to specialise in just one thing? 

Pop star....It's highly unlikely I'll ever be a mainstream pop star; I'm over 30, plus sized, rather outspoken and lets face it, a bit odd.
Realistically, there’s no place for me in the current market. Blandness reigns supreme and pop producers have raped the recent history of dance music and churn out sound-a-like drivel with the same pumping beat and lyrics such as 'get on the floor, put your drinks up, drink, get sexy, yeah we living it big time' ad nauseum...
So you know what, I'm going to keep on making music DIY style, perform as and when because I love it, rather than wanting to be a bland pop princess.

DJing... After my early rave education, delved into house before that turned to tacky trance. Learnt about pop, bootlegs, disco and electro which informs what I play out now. 
I was recently accused of taking DJing seriously...well yes I do. Even if I'm “just playing pop”, I still want to entertain and create as much as a storm on the dance floor as if I were performing or playing any other genre (though my ideal set would be a bit like 2 Many DJs in their early years, quality music across genres. Essentially, fun).
I bloody love music. As long as people keep booking me and dancing to my musical concoctions, then I'm more than happy to continue. 

Entertainer..... It seems incredibly tough to break the cabaret circuit as a woman unless you're doing burlesque (yawn..) or a sultry singing chanteuse and I'm neither. I gave up performance art some time ago, some of the work I did was terrible. I'm creating and sculpting every time time I drag up anyway.
At the moment, I'm currently in the midst of putting new work together that could be considered cabaret but is quite simply performance.
My early performances were live bootlegs/mashups (long before they started doing them on TV talent shows) so taking that concept and paraphrasing The Residents concept for their Commercial Album (that the best of a pop song can be summed up within a minute),  I'm creating pieces of storytelling, by compiling themed megamixes made up of various pop songs. I'll be singing cuts of different songs with a smattering of spoken and hopefully doing something a little different to standing still and singing full songs. 

So as for going mainstream, pah. Nothing I do could be placed in the current Cowell culture and I'm not inspired to adapt or chase it. I know my place, way down in the lower regions of entertainment. The best I could ever hope for is some kind of minor queer cult status, travel a bit more and continue to do what I love.

The première of my new work will be at the Applecart Festival and a few other gigs I've on the horizon (all listed on my website), festival season looking juicy too. 
See you in a tent, club or on the dancefloor.


In Bed with Holestar

I recently hosted a late night, sell out screening of In Bed with Madonna at the Rio cinema in Dalston.
400 screaming, dancing and cat calling Madge fans made for quite a giddy night out. We began with a Vogue Off (with Jacqui  Potato stealing the crown for her inspired Frozen look) and the premiere of In Bed with Holestar.


Chipped Tooth Mix

I was a judge at Burger Queen last week and what fun it was.  Unfortunately I chipped a tooth during the taste round due to the abundance of sugar, so while waiting for my dentist appointment, I made a 80s pop mix about it


Before the Hard Ton - Not Again video shoot, decided to indulge myself a little and do a little performance.
It's the Prince & Rosie Gaines version of Nothing Compares 2 U, doing both parts before becoming Sinead O' Connor.


Open letter to Rihanna

I like you. You're a well rounded pop star and have a good team that have made some decent pop songs. You have that fun, cheeky, sexy thing balanced well and your music doesn't give me a headache like most of your peers (despite singing through your nose).

You've duetted with almost everyone in popular music but why your physically abusive ex Chris Brown? I'll happily defend your right to dance provocatively in your pants on prime time TV show and smoke whatever plant you choose but girl, by collaborating with a convicted violent scum bag, you're endorsing domestic violence and look ridiculous.

By going back and working with someone who has beat the crap out of you, you're sending a very disturbing message to women, victims of abuse and your legion of fans. Granted, you've not asked to be a role model but you are to many, especially little girls, many on my estate emulate your songs, hair and moves.
You're telling them its ok for a man to beat you up. You're contradicting your image of feisty young lady in control to one of a weak victim who lets her abuser crawl back into her life.

You may have forgiven him for mangling your face but many won't. I'm guessing you're in love with him and being a silly mare but if the collaborations are just for publicity....well that's even more fucked up.

It took Tina Turner years to get out, she was trapped in an abusive, controlling marriage and left with nothing but her name. You're a gorgeous young woman....walk away now with some dignity.


P.S. His music is really shit and you can do a lot better, regardless of his angry fists.

P.P.S. Have a look at this. You could earn yourself some weed money and get your own back too. http://www.howtobeatupanything.com/home/2012/02/thousand-dollar-bounty-offered-on-chris-brown.html

Hard Ton - Not Again Video

A few weeks ago, I shaved my head for fellow plus size disco bitch Hard Ton for the new video 'Not Again' in couture by Lyall HakaraiaI love Hard Ton's music, aesthetic and queerness so was a pleasure to work with them.

Enjoy two early hatched Easter eggs (or as Hard Ton says. Eat-her eggs)

Get the Hard Ton - Not Again EP 


I don't understand the credibility of awards (when was the last time a nurse, youth worker or road sweeper received a fancy bauble at a lavish public ceremony) yet the omission of Scottee from the 2012 London Cabaret Awards is surprising and somewhat odd. 

The short list features the deserved and fabulous talents of David HoyleRyan Styles, Dickie Beau, Myra Dubois, Bourgeois & MauriceJonny WooLe Gateau ChocolatFancy Chance among others, but where is Scottee? (He was long listed in three categories; Alternative Performer, Host and Ongoing Production for Eat Your Heart Out.) Opinions are subjective but I feel it's a massive over sight that one of the hardest working and most progressive people in the alternative performance scene hasn't received a nod in any category.

My first encounter with Scottee was quite abrupt. He marched up to me at Kashpoint and said "I'm Yr Mum, who are you?" He later scolded me in front of a room of people for a collaboration I was honored to be part of.  I found him precocious, pretentious and somewhat rude...but rather fascinating. I watched his work from the wings for some time before we bonded on the roof of the NYC Downlow at Glastonbury and now consider him lovely, charming, driven, talented and an incredibly professional individual who I have the utmost respect for.

Besides creating some fascinating work and ideas, he knows who the 'right people' are and how to maneuver himself in the cut throat business of show, which is a skill in itself. He has kept things queer with integrity, continues to push things forward politically while maintaining accessibility and deserves his prolific status in alternative performance.

Not that he needs trinkets, I'm probably more perturbed by this than he is. He told me once he was concerned about his lack of higher education. I told him I have a Fine Art Masters and it means diddly squat. From a young age, he's been out there, doing it and is better placed and more experienced as a performer, director and curator than many with twice his education and age. Does he deserve an award? Yes. Does he care? Probably not. He'd probably eat it anyway.


PS You can vote in the Time Out Audience Award category at https://www.facebook.com/TimeOutLondon?sk=app_248962568456729
You could vote for me if you were that way inclined but I suggest you vote for Scottee.

PPS I'm not having a go at the judges or the awards themselves, this is merely an opinion. 

New Year Ramblings etc

Happy happy merry etc
Since we (I) last spoke, I've been belting it out at the Royal Vauxhall Tavern panto, appeared in a national magazine (not a hip fashanker one...the type you'll find in dentist reception rooms..yes), did my 'DJ/sing at the same time' routine around Europe, opened the Copenhagen LGBT Film Fest, delivered more Lets Get Quizzical and my other baby POP!

The Queen of F***ing Everything EP received amazing reviews in print and online, sold darn well (thanks North America), has notched up over 5 thousand views on You Tube and two tracks from the EP appeared on separate 'best songs of the year' lists. Nice.
Also released 'Harsh Love', my collaboration with Nag Nag Nag and Atomizer star, Fil OK.
FYI...I'm on the hunt for a decent agent.....
So what's coming up? More of more of course.
Lets Get Quizzical has a new monthly residency (every third Thursday of the month) and is Londons only interactive pop culture quiz that transforms into a disco. Childish fun for adults.

Next dose 
Thursday 19th January.
Dalston Superstore, 117 Kingsland High St, LDN, E8 2PB. Free entry, free to play.
Quiz from 8.30pm Dancing till 2am

Essential ingredients
1. Quality pop music from residents who know how to rock the floor
2. We don't care what you wear or who you bonk
3. Smooching encouraged (snog tags provided)
Returns Saturday 21st Janaury with Princess Julia & Prince Nelly
Vogue Fabrics, 66 Stoke Newington Road, LDN, N16 7XB. £5 11pm to 4am

Times are tough out there, people want to be entertained, I'd rather provide fun nights out than attempt achingly cool ones and as we know..fashion is fickle, fun is forever.
Coming for 2012, I'm working towards a new accessible performance concept and HOT LASER (Queer Arts Community)  will get a proper launch. The aim is to promote, endorse and digitally archive queer British based creatives. Thinking ahead you see....I'm probably not going to be wearing a wig forever (but will continue so as long as I enjoy it and people want me).
It's all good.

Maison Twenty - Holestar T Shirts

I designed some T shirts for the Maison Twenty project

They are going to be in Harvey Nichols too schweetie darling