Attention! Attention, drag fans! We interrupt this program for a Special Edition of “Ingenue’s Drag World.” This just in! And “just” call me Sylvia. Sylvia Browne that is! For you see, I am the new drag psychic extraordinaire.
It all started at my home club of TigerHeat, when I first met VIZIN, a Los Angeles based drag queen whose name is Native American for “Two Spirit.” Isn’t that a perfect moniker for a drag queen? When she hit the stage, a quote I read from BuzzFeed came to mind. BuzzFeed said, “VIZIN is an amazing drag performer unlike anyone you’ve seen.” Very true indeed!
We loved her so much that we invited her to perform at our 10th anniversary of “OUT on the Mountain,” the annual LGBTQ celebration at Six Flags Magic Mountain. As hostess of both events, I saw VIZIN firsthand and got to speak with this extraordinary drag diva.
Speed forward to my latest column here at WeHo Times. In my column, I made a bold prediction about VIZIN. Being an advanced drinker hurts the ole memory so allow me to quote myself. Oh, yes. I said, “This Native American drag queen is already working with world-renowned folks like DJ Hector Fonseca and Chris Rosa. Is knocking Swift off the top spot next
Well, guess what? That prediction came true! Only a few days later, VIZIN not only debuted over Taylor Swift on the Billboard Dance Club Songs Chart, but in only her second week on the chart, she still remained ahead of Taylor! Yes, bitches!!!! And who predicted it? Moi! And one of our own, Sylvester, helped to get her there.
Yes, the song that topped Taylor was “You Make Me Feel (Mighty Real).” You know Sylvester’s 1975 disco anthem originally written by Chris Spierer for Motown artists Valentino and Carl Bean. Our darling VIZIN re-imagined her version with the help of RuPaul’s music producer Chris Rosa. DJ Hector Fonseca, who has had over 20 #1 Billboard remixes including those for Lady Gaga, Beyonce, and Rihanna, did the official remix with additional remixes by John Dish, Taito Tikaro, Eduardo Lujan, and Luis Vazquez. Well, that team made something “mighty real” all right! The song debuted on the Billboard Dance Club Songs Charts at #48, ahead of Taylor Swift’s “Ready For It?” that debuted at #49!
“You Make Me Feel (Mighty Real)” is the follow-up single to VIZIN’s earlier 2017 single for “I Was Born This Way.” Jose Omar, who has directed Justin Bieber, directed her video with Leo Madrid. They shot at Bar 10 with a cast of cameos including model Brandon Cole Bailey, Cassandra Cass from “Strut” on Oxygen, Eric Leonardos from “Finding Prince Charming,” and Manila Luzon and Mariah Paris Balenciaga from “RuPaul’s Drag Race.”
According to their calculations, Billboard promises that the song will hit #39 soon! This means our very own drag diva herself is officially a Top 40 artist. And speaking of “Drag Race,” VIZIN now joins drag legends Divine and Lady Bunny among queens who have charted independently without appearing on the show. Though several “Drag Race” alumni charted at Billboard following the show, VIZIN bucked the trend!
When I sat down with her in her dressing room at “OUT on the Mountain,” I was curious about her decision not to do the show. I asked her why she skipped the yellow brick road to almighty “Drag Race” and instead plunged into the unknown alone. While tweaking a mile high, bright yellow wig, VIZIN looked at me through the mirror and said, “The show is a really good platform for a lot of queens. I have definitely considered it, but the opportunities I’ve been experiencing have led to a decision not to enter. Recording music and focusing on my career as a singer and an artist is what I’m most excited about.”
Of course, while in her dressing room, I was distracted by her gorgeous, muscular back-up dancers practicing their upcoming onstage routine. All I thought was if VIZIN had gone the Sam Smith route rather than the Divine route, would these gorgeous male Gods be dancing with her? She purred, “Drag has always been my outlet and also my key to the gay community. Getting in drag helps me break down barriers and reveal the real me underneath, in myself as well as in others. Being compared to Divine is certainly a compliment. Drag is just one part of who I am. You may see the man behind the mask, sometime in the future. I may not want to be a woman, but looking like one gives me the strength.”
So what does the future hold for VIZIN? Instead of being my new Sylvia Browne drag self, I inquired to the source herself. VIZIN reveals, “I want to be able to say that I lived. I want to say, ‘I didn’t hold back, and I took every chance that I could’ before I step off this big blue marble we call Earth. I want to inspire people to take control of their lives and to give it all they have. In the end, nothing else matters, so get your life.”
And to queens who long to follow in her footsteps, she says, “Stay true to who you are and what you believe in. Don’t let others chop you down to make you feel ugly or to make you look like them. Keep learning and never be afraid to ask questions. Finally, stay humble. People remember everything, and being a c**t is never cute.” Truer words, my girl. Truer words.
And with that, she glued down that massive yellow wig and roared onto the stage with her muscle boys in tow! VIZIN just wrapped her “I Was Born This Way” USA club tour, which included festival appearances where she has shared the bill with Chaka Khan, Jodi Watley, and Aaron Carter. You can also catch her as a fashion contributor for Us Weekly magazine.
So, drag fans, I continue to see great things ahead for this determined “Two Spirit” drag force of nature. And as the new Sylvia Browne of drag, I am seeing things a little clearer than most these days. One could say, I’m a good “20/20.” Better yet, in my drag world, I see great things because I believe in my … “perfect VIZIN.”