Tuesday, April 26, 2016

OUR NEWEST PATRON SAINT

 
1990 was a really important year for me musically. In 94 I came out, as in to gay clubs, (hell, I came out of the womb wanting a man), started my love affair with gin and rum and anything else wet , and fell instantly in love with club and house music, in addition to my love for the lonnnnng nights clubbing. For the first time ever, I started to empty out my piggy bank which paid for nights out and for two cassette tapes: Clivilles and Cole, and Deee-lite's World Clich√©, and Madonna’s “Vogue” which to me all of these were the pinnacle of human musical achievement. But an amazing song was released, with a video that would provide me with enough giddy ’60s fashion inspiration and fly dance-move fabulousness to last a lifetime. That song was “Groove Is in the Heart” by Deee-Lite, and its lead singer, Lady Miss Kier, quickly became my own personal proto-Spice Girl, not to mention my major source of drag style.... the pop idol against which all other pop idols would forever be judged. Deee-lite and Lady Miss Kier would be my introduction to New York City night life, another idol, Lady Bunny and all the nights of labor with my good friend and sister Mame, on the club scene. Just thinking back gives me chills, seems like yesterday, I can still hear the thumpa thumpa of the music. My first musical love will always be house music.

Like most of us, Lady Miss Kier was from a small town.... in Youngstown, Ohio. She moved to New York to study fashion design at FIT and began selling her crazy, disco-inspired clothes to friends she met on the club scene., silver platform boots and blue glitter suits—and that was just for the dudes. One of her clients, the Russian DJ Dmitry Brill, convinced her to record a demo with himself and the Japanese DJ Towa Tei, and thus the three-headed hydra of disco-house-funk amazingness known as Deee-Lite was born, which gave us endless night of worshipping to the cool vibe house sound to this way cool group.
 
Adopting the name Lady Miss Kier and styling her band in addition to co-writing their songs, Kirby transformed herself into the ultimate club diva. A lot of people were working the colorful retro-’60s thing at the time, but she was the most fabulous of them all. With her penchant for skintight Pucci catsuits, oversize chunky cocktail rings, sculptural John Fluevog heels, and a teased-and-flipped hairdo, Miss Kier was largest-than-life in a scene where EVERYBODY was competing to look the craziest.
 
Can we also talk about her makeup at the time? With her white-powdered face, razor-sharp drawn-on brows, and three-inch fake eyelashes, Miss Kier was like a female drag queen. I could say a whole lot of Feminist Theory 101 stuff about how her over-the-top makeup was like an ironic commentary on the construction of femininity in our culture, but I’ll spare you my second-rate Judith Butler spiel and just say that she looked really freaking fabulous
 
I can also remember talking to her on two occasions, one as high as a kite and the other probably drunk and high. Once in Philly, and another time in Baltimere....yes, yours truly went all over the place to club. She was the most cool vibed person I ever talked too, laid back, extremely nice and kind hearted. I think I even adopted her dance after the second night. Even though it was before my time she was like a modern day Emma Peal. And gurrrrls could she ever spin for a club........... while I still enjoy going out, club music WILL NEVER be like this again.

 
A 3 Hour set by Lady Miss Kier kept the dance floor packed at this venue for a LGBT event a couple years ago. Excuse me now while I tear up the living room floor. This is my music!!!!!

14 comments:

  1. The Lady has a striking beauty! I'm so glad she exchanged friendly words with you. Would it be acceptable to describe her as a "fag hag"? I don't know what terms are PC these days!

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    1. I am a "fag hag" and I approve this message!

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  2. I LOVE her style. And it just occurred to me that I own a pair of John Flevog shoes. I picked them up at a vintage shop for $12, because they were very Prada like. A steal! So this weekend I'm gonna put together the most Lady Miss Kier ensemble I can!

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  3. Utter fabulousness! I think she'd appreciate being called "a modern day Emma Peel"... Jx

    PS Glad to see you're developing your own set of "Patron Saints" - mine has being growing hugely over the years.

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  4. Omg.......i love that clip. That was when clubs were so fun and campy. She is amazing. I never knew so much about her. I hear she is totally cool. That music made my afternoon.

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  5. What a very nice post. Alas, she was after my time, but you really set the mood with clubbing and your love of her and this group. Amazing sound....and her style....Emma Peal indeed! I figured your style would be a retro drag.

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  6. She is so pretty, I love her good retro vintage style. I will wait for more songs....love there sound.

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  7. Um. Music Is the Soul Selector. From that movie they made about us.

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  8. YES!!! I love Deee-Lite! Awesome post and a great band. I also enjoyed hearing your story. I still go out too, but the vibe is totally different now than it was then. It's all most boring in clubs now.

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  9. she’s so pretty! love the selection of images

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  10. Talk about a style icon in the making! That beat! Those colors! That catsuit! She was just FABULOUS! Love hearing about your clubbing days too.

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  11. She's very pretty, and she's also on Twitter. She's tweeted a lot about Bernie and voting fraud lately.

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Go ahead darling, tell me something fabulous!

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