Tag Archives: lgbt

Annaburgh!

I’ve had a great week so far!

On Monday I was at the Queen Margaret Union, Glasgow University, for Spangled Cabaret. A fantastic line-up as always featuring Paul Puppet, Earnest & Wilde, Stephen Watt, Tom Harlow, Raven Rose, Brandy Montematre, Professor Cogsworth and Lacy Rain. Though not extremely busy everyone that was there clearly wanted to be there so a great night was had by all. The awesome Debbie McCall (AKA Galactic Carnival) was there too and snapped some photos of us all. This is one she took of me 😊

The legend that is Stephen Watt also gave me a lift home afterwards which is fantastic. It went on till after 11 and I would have got home at stupid o’clock otherwise. He also snapped a few pictures and took a short video as shown here.

Here are a few other pics I took after getting ready in a dark corner as everything else was locked (uni hasn’t started yet which would explain the sparse attendance…that and the Edinburgh Fringe more of which shortly).

On Wednesday I had a half day from work as I was going through to Edinburgh to do a little spot on a friends Free Fringe show. Natalie Sweeney Potter had kindly invited me onto the bill of ‘Funny Lassies’. I decided to make the day of it and justify the train fare. I got changed in work and headed straight for the train figuring it would save me doing it there and it means I could spend most of the day mingling with the crowds.

Apologies for the tartan spam! I just love this dress and I figured as I was heading to our nation’s capital I’d tartan myself up. I chose my knee high boots as they are comfy to wear for hours at a time.

I did a lot of walking as I had time to kill. Edimburgh is not recommended to be traversed in heels I should add and my calves are not happy with it. I’d say it was worth it though as overall it was a great experience and I didn’t once get any hassle. I popped into a few different places for a drink here and a bite to eat there without fuss. Possibly because at this time of year there are a lot of colourful folk about so maybe I kind of blended into the background a bit.

One of the highlights was bumping into a comedian I had the pleasure of sharing a bill with back in May, a chap called Obie. He was flyering for his show so I popped in to see that. Very funny guy indeed. Great crowd, nice intimate venue. £5 for a beer and a bourbon too 😉

I had also arranged to meet up with Jenny Bside who is an entertainer mining a similar territory to myself. She is up from London to do a whole bunch of shows. Sadly I couldn’t catch her performance as I had to make the train and it was a long journey home. She stayed for mine though which was very kind indeed (plus she took these 2 photos).

Natalie wasn’t there as she took the night off but the Lady Shona and Lubna Kerr were. They were a couple of lovely ladies indeed and very funny too. It was a shame I wasn’t able to spend more time hanging out with them or be around in general. I had to get changed back to normal and hot foot it to the train station which was all up hill then down hill pushing past lots of slowmoving or inert people who conversely were in no rush at all 😄. I just caught a train after 9pm and after a change of train then bus I was in for about half 11.

I wish I’d taken more photos too – would have loved one with the castle in the background but I only managed one with Arthur’s Seat. Maybe I’d do it again but it would be ideal to have company next time as spending most of the day to myself was a bit tiresome. They could have carried one of my cases! 😄

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Performance Anxieties

It has been a little while since I last did what I term a ‘proper post’. In my case that would be one which includes insightful sentences and isn’t just a pretty list of everything I’ve done and places I’ve been. Truth is that’s all I’m mostly able to do these days since taking Anna beyond the comfort and relative safety of the house. A nice relaxing session at home is rare and I would like to do that again sometime soon, away from natural light, sweaty bars and the uncomfortable scrutiny of strangers.

Since my last dialogue, discounting the two poems I published recently, Anna’s had four more outings and I would say they all went rather well. I’ll briefly share some imagery from them here.

These are from when I played Nice n’ Sleazy for the Spite House/Queer Theory takeover. It was a fantastic night! Some truly awesome acts played – too many to mention. The top image was one of three taken by my wife whom I enjoyed a fun date night with once I came off stage.

These two pictures were taken the next morning when I had an hour or so to myself. I was trying out another new red wig I had purchased the week before. Out of speed my makeup was minimal.

The pics with the houndtooth skater dress are from the middle of April when I returned to Allsorts Cabaret after nearly a year. That was a brilliant show too, hosted by the marvellous Markee De Saw and featuring Daiquiri Dusk, Innocence Bliss, Wild Card Kitty, Sharrow, Miss A. Tique, Ann Phetimine and MC Hammersmith. That last chap was particularly impressive with his polite freestyle rapping. He performed at Spite House too and he was able to do a whole rap where he encouraged the audience to hand him whatever they had about their person and he would include them in the lyrics. I handed him a bit pipe I found backstage! 😆

A week or so later another new wig came, this time in a shorter style so that I didn’t eat it whilst singing or get in my eyes (it does both as a matter of fact).

Later that day I headed off to the Bungo in the southside again to play with The Creative Martyrs, Haystack Monolith and Dasa Fon Flasa. I had a great night there too, Haystack and the Martyrs were on fine form. Haystack’s Slovakian friend Dasa was brilliant too – he did a great rendition of ‘Always look on the bright side of life’ in his native language. I have no performance videos or photos but I did take a few reference shots beforehand as I always do.

The next gig on the calendar was an interesting one. The first instance of Anna and The Well Happy Band being on the same bill. This happened at McChuills last night as part of Yellow Movement Sundays. It was billed as a jam session but that didn’t really some to pass as the turnout musically speaking wasn’t as great as hoped. I was on before the Well Happy Band so after I finished I crossed to the other side of the stage and picked up my bass. I was rather broken by the end of it. This is the only useable photo I took – which is a pity as you can’t see my cute skirt. Someone was taking photos so hopefully I can see them and share them at some point.

I called this post Performance Anxieties because I wasn’t sure what else to call it. I still get them big time but for a variety of reasons. Nervousness varies wildly depending on if I know the venue or crowd well enough. My main worry is my material. I always feel like I never have enough new stuff particularly in the song department. Happily I was able to deploy a new song last night called ‘Why won’t cheerleaders come near me?’. That seemed to go okay but I aim to get more soon. I’ve begun planning a new album for Anna. The last one was hastily compiled for giving away at gigs but I think with time and effort I could come up with something stunning, funny and hopefully musically awesome. I want to call it ‘Tits of Steel’. It was from a comment my friend Mercury said to me after my first ever gig, she told me I had tits of steel. I thought that was hilarious!

I also worry about not having enough or having too many gigs. Having a busy homelife makes it tricky to justify them sometimes and I know my wife does feel left out a lot of the time. I’m not sure I’ve balanced it right but sometimes it is hard to say know when people you admire offer you the chance to perform at one of their nights. Social media makes it harder as well as I see a lot of shows advertised where I think I’d love to play that night, I’ve never done it before it looks fun. You contact them but you get no reply and you think (well, I think) oh shit I must be rubbish because they don’t want me. I hate thinking like that but it’s difficult not to. There was an instance last month of one of my gigs being cancelled, and this was one I’d been lobbying for for nearly a year. I know deep down that it’s very unlikely I’ll be rebooked for another one and that chance has gone.

I’m playing again tonight, back again at my spiritual home Spangled Cabaret. Probably ditching the poetry as I have done on a few occasions. I wonder if anyone would notice if I stopped doing them altogether?

Arty Anna

It’s been a funny few weeks since the Drag-Opticon gig. I think it’s because I have a lot on in March that I may be becoming anxious about it. I pulled out of a gig the other week at the last minute. It was after work and I’d just finished getting changed to go to the venue and upon looking in the full length mirror I did not like what I saw. Cue a massive crisis of confidence which culminated in me clambering back into my drab clothes and sitting on the floor propped up by the door. I don’t know if it was my choice of outfit, the hair and make-up, my loss of faith in my material as it was a comedy night I was appearing at. It could have been all of the above. Suffice to say the homing instinct kicked in and home I went. I only managed one picture from that session and here it is, I don’t like it that much but I guess it’s relevant to this particular situation.

Matters improved for my next appearance which was 4 days later. This performance took place at ‘Dr Sketchy’ in Stereo, Renfield Lane, Glasgow. It was unusual in a number of respects, the first being that it was at 1 in the afternoon, it was a paid gig and that it involved life drawing! Usually they have burlesque dancers and folk like that and the idea is that you do your act then you pose for the audience to draw you. Tremendous fun but also challenging. I’m not terribly great at staying still but I managed fairly well. It was so warm under those lights. I think I did 4 poses in total; one where I stood holding my guitar, one sitting down reading a book, one with me holding an opened umbrella and another where I lay on a blanket propped up against the back of the stage.

I think Nicola, the lady running the show took this one during my first pose. Here are a few pics showing how I actually looked. If I do say so myself I reckon I looked a lot better than my previous attempt.

Sadly I never got to see any of the drawings, I was hoping people would share them to the Dr Sketchy Facebook page but to no avail. It was also a first in that I shared the bill with a pair of life models. A married couple from the USA who seem to be travelling about the place, seeing the sights, appearing naked in the basements of bars for strangers to draw them. If I was wearing a hat I’d take it off to them! I had brought a sketchpad with me so I could join in so I relished the opportunity to give it a try. They did 6 poses I think and I drew them all but only one or two turned out well enough to share.

I’ve never drawn naked people before. I always prefer drawing animals or things as I find the human face particularly difficult – lips especially. Luckily the lady had wild hair that more often than not cascaded over her face and made it a bit easier. I’d definitely love to go again sometime!

A new wig arrived last week too so that was more than a bit exciting. It’s very close indeed to the shade of red I’ve been seeking for several years. For the benefit of non regular readers of this blog I shall briefly explain that I have long been trying to find a suitable replacement for my first brilliant wig. A gorgeous long auburn one with prominent bangs. This one doesn’t have the fringe but the shade is almost the same.

It’s bloody tight though haha! I must have a big head though to be fair. Next gig is ‘Ashes to Ashes’, a cabaret tribute to David Bowie at the Polo Lounge on the 1st of March. I’ve been asked to provide a special Bowie poem which I have been dutifully working on for the last while. It’s more or less done and probably just needs a wee touch-up. Here is the poster for it, it’s very smart indeed!

Dick Pic

‘Dick Pic’

Sometimes my inbox is a scary place

Sometimes there are pictures – but not of a face

Or kittens or vegetables or castles or palaces…

But raging stonners and laughable phalluses!

A dick pic is not going to win my affection

I don’t care if you can achieve an erection

Everyone’s braver behind a mobile phone

I doubt if you’d be so cocky if we were alone

New friends, outfits and gigs oh my!

I have had a busy bunch of weeks since I last posted. Visitors to the web edition of my page will notice that I got the hang of ‘widgets’ and now my page looks a lot more interesting. Also, two more gigs under my girly belt! Of varying quality it has to be said. I’m speaking of my own performance of course – I can be pretty harsh on myself a lot of the time. The one I did a couple of weeks ago was superb. That was the one where I said the dress code was: Fierce. I panicked and dug out a little black dress for the occasion. Sadly I haven’t seen any pictures from the evening as the lady running the night is on holiday but I looked a little bit like this…

I had a whale of a time and was especially happy to be able to hang out with Talullah Belle and Gabriel Featherstone. A dancer and a surreal comedian respectively. Also on the bill were Innocence Bliss, a very lovely lady indeed with a cracking sense of humour, the band Reality TV, who were a nice bunch of chaps and their fanbase were very kind towards us too. I found out afterwards that I’d missed a photo opportunity with the ladies in their entourage as I’d got changed back too hastily. It was ran by a lady called Yasmin who was really lovely too and compered by a drag artist called Diana Fire. Things got quite tense during a part of her act when she produced a knife and cut her tights off…also slicing into her shin. Twas a fierce looking wound to be sure. We were assured once some whisky was doused on it and it was bandaged up it’d be fine but I’m still not convinced.

After the gig Talullah was able to put me in touch with a lady who runs nights in the bar she works in. A rock bar in Partick called Rockus. I’ll be appearing there on Wednesday the 14th of September so I’m really looking forward to that too. I seen Gabriel again on Thursday last as I was appearing at his cabaret night in The Blue Chair called ‘The Boiling Dolphin Cabaret’. That was a good night too but I don’t know if I was on top form or not. I only did songs eschewing poetry as I wasn’t in the mood. I wore my trusty polka dot dress that I’ve had for a couple of years now. I felt dead pretty in it! As there is only one toilet there I had to get changed in work again but I’m cool with that now, I’m starting to enjoy it. I had my first ‘windy dress’ incident on the way to the station which made me giddy for a short while after. Arriving well before everyone else I had the chance to relax and have a meal. There weren’t many other people there so I wasn’t hassled and was able to converse with the owner. A Tasmanian lady called Lorelle – she was a formidable person indeed. Her brownies were outstanding!

I shared a stage with Amelia Bayler and Donald Henderson, 2 very funny comedians. I was taken with Amelia in particular, such confidence. Also there was a close-up magician and mentalist called Paul M Distefano. He was amazing! Amusingly one of the people he chose to do a trick on turned out to also be a magician (apparently they didn’t know each other). The gig was sparsely attended but I’ve come to enjoy those ones more. The intimacy is brilliant fun plus no one can hide or talk haha! 😄 (or eat nachos).

Outfits have been on my mind recently too. I needed some new ones and as well as purchasing some nice dresses myself, a good friend of my wife passed a few onto me. Pictures will follow…oh yes.

These are two that I have purchased at charity shops over the last fortnight.

I’m very excited about the next three I’m showcasing! These are the donations from my wife’s friend. The one at the end is especially fabulous 🙂

Isn’t that peach one exciting? It’s got stage written all over it! Can’t wait to wear it out (once I’ve solved the VPL problem lol).

Hopefully I’ll have some more things to write about soon. Definitely enjoying bringing Anna to life in more social situations these days. There may be opportunities for nights out in the next couple of weeks. I won’t say anymore incase I jinx them!

Have a fab weekend everybody X

If you haven’t heard from me, I’m probably dead

If you haven’t heard from me, I’m probably dead

Though it may not have crossed your mind

My lack of communication

Is cos I’ve left my body behind

Maybe you think I’ve moved on

And have made some new friends

‘Moving on’ could be correct

In a suddenly non-living sense

If you haven’t heard from me, I wouldn’t worry

Probably life’s got in the way

I’ve been juggling it so awkwardly

It’s in such disarray

What was the last thing I said to you?

I bet it was as innocuous as hell

And you’ve probably forgotten

That’s why you don’t want to tell!

If you haven’t heard from me, I’m probably dead

It’s not like I’d be able to say

We don’t even know the same people

So you can’t find out that way

Don’t even know if I deserve tributes

Let alone ones I’d likely never see

So let’s share our feelings now

Me to you and you to me

Enjoying it while it lasts

I don’t know if I can truly class my last gig as a success. I did have a great time as I often do and this time my wife accompanied me. The main thing that spoiled it was my choice of hair – a dark red number to go with my cherry skater dress. It was a bit too wavy for its own good and had a rather eager willingness to get in my mouth when I was trying to sing ha ha!

The other acts were brilliant! There was a lot of rapping going on – Scottish rapping and there was even a female punk duo. I managed to get a bit drunk and spill beer in my handbag resulting in the ‘back’ button on my phone not working anymore.

Please excuse the low quality images, once again it seems I was passed by in terms of photography. It was superb to get to play The Classic Grand though, it’s a lovely big space. Apparently it used to be a porno cinema in its heyday!

A week later an opportunity arose to get some time in the house to try outfits and take pictures. Videos too. It felt odd shaving at home and taking my time getting ready. There were a couple of dresses in particular I was wanting to try out for future usage. Obviously I have tried them on but it’s just not the same until you do the hair and make-up too.

That one I really like but it has been pointed out that it’s a bit on the short side!

That dress is a cracker and I feel so good in it. I tell you what though it’s a bugger to get on and off! Both the dresses are from charity shops and were both under a fiver.

I like this top and skirt combo too, it’s a bit more down to earth. You don’t see it properly in the pics because of the failing light. I intend on wearing this for my gig on Friday as it’s comfortable but suitably feminine and I have to travel in character there again.