July 10, 2011 § 1 Comment
“Help, my ribs are hurting” stand-up comedy. The hottest poetry you’ve ever heard. Steampunk musical glory. Voices to die for. Cupcakes, and brownies, and chocolate, and sparkles. Kitsch photos. Points and prizes. Sexy people of all flavours. Oh, and my wonderful guitarist and I will be spilling our guts for the first full performance of my album Ashes.
So, having a glorious time is inevitable. But why should you care? Well, darlings, give me five minutes of your time and I’ll tell you.
Hmmmm…transphobia is such a horrible thing. And it’s ever so widespread. Name me an industry free from it and I’ll call you a liar. Which is how this event got started. An event raising funds for recording an album AND for mobility equipment? Well, without transphobia, we might not have had to make this a fundraiser – more of a general Bacchanal.
The original plan was for my lovely friend Matt to put his half of the proceeds towards top surgery. Already hard enough, that surgical provisions for trans people are so poorly handled that many are, in effect, forced to go private. But then some really rather epic transphobia stepped in to force his hand.
Matt’s health is not good. Despite the NHS’s many failings, he’s been seeking treatment for long enough now that we would expect at least a diagnosis and a provisional plan of action. Oh no. For, you see, he’s trans. And, for a surprisingly high percentage of doctors and nurses, that changes everything. Consultants refusing to listen to or test for his symptoms, because they know that everything must stem from being trans. If you can be mentally deranged enough to believe that your body needs a bit of adjusting, they reason, then your mind MUST be playing tricks on all and sundry. Nurses debating “its” sex on the ward. A lot of shrugging and a “god knows what you expect us to do” attitude. His mobility has, by this point, been compromised – and he’s had to buy his mobility equipment privately. So, he’d really rather be saving for top surgery – but the basic need to get around has to come first.
And my story? Well, the sophistry that the music industry is a free and easy, liberal kind of place is precisely that – a sophistry. I know that I’m good – hopefully, if you’re here, you know that too. But if I was planning on recording my album through a traditional set-up – well, I might end up waiting the rest of my life. Being called ‘he/she/it’ by potential agents. Deliberate misgendering by promoters. Frank admissions that, being trans, I’m an impossible act to sell by record labels. Requests to “be the pretty girl you are”. The ridiculous idea that a singer-songwriter – someone whose strength of communication is founded in their sincerity and willingness to embrace their vulnerability – could lie about who they are to better appeal to close-minded consumers.
Well, fuck that. And not in a sexy way. The album is written and ready to go. The recording sessions are booked. Photographers and filmmakers lined up. It’s going to be wonderful.
So, to get back to begging – we could really use your help. And here’s how you can give it.
If you’re coming on the 24th, why not:
- Sponsor a cover song for £10? Any song you like, sung in the style you like – yes, even something totally ridiculous.
- Donate something to the auction? It could be a home-made T-shirt, the promise of baking, a personal guided tour of a city…or bring some extra money, and bid away – I’ll even be selling a kiss to the highest bidder…oh, and kissing is one of the things I do best.
- Come with an appetite and buy WAY too many cakes.
- Have your picture taken with your sweetheart/sweethearts in our ridiculous grotto of bad-taste.
- Bring as many people as you possible can.
And, if you can’t make it (and I really do pity you, if you can’t):
- Sponsor a song anyway – we’ll record it and send it to you.
- Help us out with publicity – invite friends, pass on the information, blog about it, tweet about it – spread the word.
- For no other reason than to be a wonderful person, send us a donation. If I were a god (and I just might be) I’d totally save you a space in heaven for that.
Any questions/offers/requests – just send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
And thank you so much for reading. I can’t wait to see you there.