Big Freedia gets even BiggerWatch
Big Freedia is the recognized “Queen Diva” of Bounce Music in New Orleans, where she performs six or more times a week in various venues throughout the city. Bounce Music is an original urban music rising up from the intimate and fun-loving nature of the New Orleans housing projects which dominate the city’s street culture, and Freedia performs a derivative of Bounce reserved for self-proclaimed “Sissies” that has risen to prominence in recent years and features explicitly gay and cross-dressing musicians and themes. Big Freedia, like other “Sissy” artists, has achieved mainstream success with several New Orleans hit singles such as “Gin in My System” and “Azz Everywhere!” from her albums “An Ha, Oh Yeah” (1999) and “Queen Diva” (2003).
Freedia began her musical career almost 15 years ago at the Walter L. Cohen High School in New Orleans, where she was enlisted as choir director from her Sophomore to Senior years. She sees her performance as a Bounce artist as an extension of this work, often interacting in a call and response/teacher and student, fashion with her audiences. She recently developed a musical about her life entitled “Catch That Beat” which featured cameo appearances by a who’s who of New Orleans Bounce artists alongside the story of Freedia’s upbringing in New Orleans 3rd Ward. Since 2009 Freedia has begun traveling outside the city regularly with her dancers and live DJ, Rusty Lazer, playing to audiences on the East and West Coast alongside (or onstage with) artists such as Spank Rock, Galactic, Ninjasonik, Japanther, Monique and many more. Big Freedia has always acted as mentor for many younger artists and is currently at work on her third record “The Diva Returns”. Freedia has performed on the West coast with New Orleans band Galactic, recreating her collaboration on the critically-acclaimed 2010 album “Ya-Ka-May”.
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