Which Flamboyant LA Underground Characters Are Infiltrating the Mainstream? And Which One is the Next Cross(dressing)over Star?
Rebel's a hot tramp
In this week's Nightranger column (out tomorrow), we cover some of LA's most flamboyant polysexual characters and performers (nothing new), but ya know what is? Many of them are suddenly infiltrating the national pop mainstream in a big way.
Ryan Heffington -aka Sir Hef- who just debuted his new program at MOCA's "Engagement Party" series last week, has worked with everyone from RuPaul to Ke$ha, and Lady Gaga herself recently cited his arty music group We Are the World as her favorite new band.
Then there's androgynous white-wigged singer Prince Poppycock who went from gigs at The Cavern Club in the basement of Casita del Campo to the final four of America's Got Talent.
And of course, we can't forget forget Glambert!
Monday night at Club Metro at Fubar we discovered a new boy-toyish dance vamp who you're going to be hearing just as much about soon. His name is Ricky Rebel and though the moniker may sound somewhat Poison-ish, his music is electro-glitter groove, and it blew us away.
It takes a lot to stand out amidst the city's hottest trannies (Detox Icunt, Rhea Litre, Lady Miss Leopold, all on hand to wish Metro's host Cheyne Hauk -moving to NYC- farewell) but the androgynous Rebel did just that with an infectious set of live-sung dance gems and razor sharp choreography (featuring two equally alluring backup dancers) plus a live drummer. This Cali kid's got it: looks, moves and hot music.
We later discovered Rebel is the former lead singer of '90's boy pop group No Authority, signed to Michael Jackson's label (a former division of Sony) and then later to Madonna's Maverick Records. His solo stuff takes it to a sexy new level. Not surprisingly, Michael Jackson was a good friend and mentor. Rebel (real last name Godinez) definitely has the moves.
Currently, Rebel is working with My Chemical Romance, if not musically, stylistically. He's featured in their new music video, and more to come, as a character called "Ladyboy" (he's the guy on roller-skates in this clip). MCR may be Hot Topic pin-ups at this point, but we actually like this first single, "Na Na Na Na...." a lot. It's very Sweet meets Green Day, visceral and fun, and not nearly as pretentious as some of the band's previous work. We're also digging the super-hero imagery here. Interested in seeing how this new conceptual body of music and videos comes out.
We're much less a fan of Ke$ha's stuff, but gotta admit, her new clip for "Take If Off" is pretty wild, definitely better than the original. It looks like a typical Nightranger night out, in fact. No surprise some of our favorite LA foxes and freaks are in the clip, the aforementioned Detox and Jeffree Star (love the showdown between Star and the $tar). Also, a frequent Nightranger subject, designer Ernie Omega did many of the frocks.
More glitz and crazy club kidz (Heffington's MOCA bash, Omega's Glass Door party at Red Zebra, Metro Mondays) in this week's column and slideshow, maybe our greatest/gaudiest ever.