Up first is the annual Pride edition of Bitch Salad at Buddies. Toronto’s sassiest show of trash-talking lady comics rings in its fifth year with an all-star bill. Hosted by Andrew Johnston (full disclosure: that’s totally me), past editions have included appearances by Drew “Chloe Sevigny” Droege, the 1 Girl 5 Gays
cast and the final on-stage performance of Jackie Burroughs.
This year’s lineup includes perennial faves The Cheeto Girls and headliner Gavin Crawford, who parted ways with the CBC institution This Hour Has 22 Minutes
last season for reasons mainly to do with “wanting to get the fuck out of Halifax.” This was a huge surprise to me, as I was under the impression that Halifax is a hotbed of homo-society. However, one Google search reminded me of the murder of Raymond Taavel, and I was like, “Ohhh, right.” I digress. When asked what direction his comedy is going to go, 22 Minutes later, Crawford says, “probably gayer and much more swear-y.”
Post–Bitch Salad, whisk across town to The Garrison and take in the sights, sounds and smells of Party City. The hypothetical hometown of RuPaul’s Drag Race victor/instant cultural icon Sharon Needles, it seems like a no-brainer for what will no doubt go down in herstory as a night of consequence, hunty!
Hosted by Cotton Venus (House of Venus), Sammy D (Yes Yes Y’all) and Scooter (Cub Camp), Party City’s chamber of commerce welcomes the business of those who want to party hard and proper (I promise that will be my only municipal analogy). Says Scooter, “We’ll have a liquor licence until 4am and are keeping the price as low as possible because we want all the drag queens, club kids, lesbians, bears, trans and every type of queer to be loving the shit out of each other under one roof.”
Beats will come care of DJs Betti Forde, Australian legend Stereogamous and dance music royalty Larry Tee. Who is Larry Tee? Who isn’t Larry Tee! Born to Saskatchewan-ese parents, he began his music career in Atlanta, working with REM and The B-52s and werking with RuPaul and Lady Bunny. Alongside RuPaul, he ushered drag into the mainstream as co-writer of the anthemic “Supermodel (You Better Work)” and held court with Michael Alig and the Club Kids in the ’90s. Also, there’s this phenomenon called electroclash that he pioneered. Asked if there’s any scene he’s nostalgic for, he says, “I don’t fetishize the past because the now is so damn sexy and amazing! I’m making my best music yet and travelling the world meeting cool people and getting a great tan!”
Although he’s helped create some electroclash superstars — Peaches, Tiga, Princess Superstar — he’s most excited about his new crop. “Charlie Le Mindu, who creates hair clothing for Lady Gaga, styled 15 dogs in wigs for our new song, ‘Charlie.’ We dressed them like celebs — Chihuahua Del Rey, Stinky Minaj, Lady Daga — you are gonna die!” He continues, “Or Roxy Cottontail, who did my last single with Afrojack. We just shot a new video for our song ‘Boys That Go Woot,’ which features nine-year-old boys trying to pick her up . . . It’s a scream!”
If Andrew were styled as a dog, his name would be Jackapoo Johnston.
Bitch Salad Fri, June 29, 8pm Buddies, 12 Alexander St, $20
Party City Fri, June 29, 10pm
The Garrison, 1197 Dundas St W, $10