Thursday, December 1, 2011

Up on everybody's Skrillex - Grammy steez.

Soooooo... BIG NEWS EVERYBODY. Skrillex got a billion Grammy nominations! (Ok, not a billion, but like, 5. Which is like 80 hundred thousand in the electronic music world). This of course has spawned a bunch of hilarious reactionary shizzle and many many blogs wondering WHY and IF this dude should get nominated. Clearly I need to participate. Puhlayse. Like I could resist.

So I get online and there is already a healthy facebook thread started by supreme sass FunkHunter Nick Middleton, and among many yay! or boo! comments (Nick was a yay, fyi) this one stood out for me by Timothy Wisdom:

"I think people hate on Skrillex because of this: Dubstep started as a "cool" niche genre of music that had only a small number of fans. Let's call them "heads", however the dubstep they listened to isn't very much like Skrillex's music at all. The "heads" like being part of an exclusive group as it makes them feel special and unique - something that most of us enjoy feeling. Then dubstep became a mainstream genre and the "heads" lost a part of their exclusive identity. It's natural for people to instinctively reach for exterior blame and Skrillex (and Rusko prior to this) has become the scapegoat. I believe this has happened with loads of other types of music as well. I recall being angry at the Red Hot Chillies for making "Blood Sugar" and selling out their punk roots - and Nirvana for the same reason. Really, I was just upset at loosing my "I'm more punk than you" vibe. The same applies here."

So here's what I have to think about this, because honestly I've seen a lot of the same mentality that Tim is talking about in the burlesque community over the years. To be honest, I think a lot of “heads” don't really have much investment anymore in being part of a super-cool, elusive extra punk group. I think now they'd much rather get flown around & make a ton of money (and not at the expense of their musical integrity), especially after struggling for the last dozen years. I think the general frustration comes from realizing that the type of music that Skrillex makes has a mass appeal in a way that the headier music might never. As sensitive artist types, we have a reaction - because what does that say about the masses? It's not unlike pop music in that way. And the frustrating reality is that not everyone gives a fuck about the nuances of music the same way that artists do. NOT EVERYONE IS AN ARTIST. My sister is a good example of this. She doesn't give a fuck. She just wants to dance, and rage. Also – she won't go out LOOKING for specific music the same way artists & DJs do, and so most people who just want to rage will do so to the best thing they can find THAT IS HANDED TO THEM. This is also frustrating because it The Hand looks for mass appeal for an entirely different reason: capitalism.

Personally, I'm stoked for the Skrillex dude because it seems that coincidentally he genuinely enjoys making music that has mass appeal. It seems at least like he rose to fame the old-school way, instead of being “made” by the industry. I'd MUCH rather see his face on TV than a boyband. I think the masses love his music for a reason and need it. I don't listen to it, but apparently I am not the only person that matters. (If I was, Rupaul would be president and I would be writing this from a pink helicopter).

Now. As to how it will affect our community, I think that has more to do with what Tim's saying. Skillex's success (and the success of the mainstream-ish dubstep acts in general) has definitely cracked open the "secret" door to our underground, non-corporate event world like Shambhala. Ummm... that shit is selling out 9 months in advance now??? SERIOUSLY. WHAT the FUCK?? I really feel that it's so important to not lose sight of the fact that this is AMAZING FOR US. Puhlayse. I don't know a DJ who doesn't fucking love performing at Shambs. Don't even fucking try to tell me that you know someone who doesn't love bangin' out on those systems, or playing to the massive crowds of people LOSING THEIR SHIT. And so what if the crowd contains a whole wack of new kids who heard about it through Skillex? Who cares? That's fine, and great. I didn't become a burlesque dancer so I could perform only to other burlesque dancers & their friends for my whole life. That's the whole reason WHY I dance at Shambs, or at Keefer, or in the Yukon, or even at a frickin' retirement home (I seriously did that with Lola last year. It was fancy. And awesome. And they FUCKING LOVED it). Because I want to bring what I'm doing to new audiences. Because I'll never forget that moment, at 15, when I heard my first hard-core DJ. Or when, at 21, I saw my first burlesque dancer. And trust me, I was FAR from super cool or in the exclusive group or knew anything about anything back then. All I can say is, thank god that happened. Can you imagine if it hadn't!?? OMG. I shudder at the thought.

At the end of the day, we will always still have our more exclusive, artist-oriented events. They will always be there, they will always materialize (Basscoast comes to mind). And there we can feel all super cool and listen to "future music" or whatever the fuck we are calling it that week and spend the money we made performing for AWESOME new kids who just want to be inspired. Yay. EVERYBODY WINS.

SO. Good for you, Skrillex. From what I hear you are a super nice dude and I couldn't be happier for you. And if any of the shit talk gets you down, just buy some louder fucking speakers. GO FORTH VALIANT BROSTEPPER!!!


PS: Oh yeah, valiance. In case you haven't heard... the whole Dollhouse crew is getting together to throw a giant party on NYE... underground... and let me tell you, it is REALLY REALLY NOT going to suck.

All the detes are here. It is going to be SEVERE. Seriously. SERIOUSLY.

ok for real now.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

My Burlesque is Feminist, So Sit The Fuck Down and Enjoy It Already

"I have a suspicion — and hear me out, because this is a rough one — that the definition of ‘crazy’ in show business is a woman who keeps talking even after no one wants to fuck her anymore.” -Tina Fey

Oh Hi!!!!!!!! Aries Full Moon time!!! Means CP is rarrrrring to go. Seriously I cannot wait for my show tomorrow at Keefer; I'm full of fire and sass and passion and sizzla-max electricity and I'm putting some hell spittin' heat into a new track by Self Evident. RRRRROARRRR. Life is fucking rad right now and it's only getting better. Occupy Vancouver is on Saturday and my grrlz and I are gonna go RAGE it. HARD. So into it... HYPED.

I'm also SUPER pumped to go see MissRepresentation at Vancouver International Film Festival on Friday, which deals primarily with how more bitches need to be helping run media and politics and shit. That way we can stop the greedy-ass capitalist agenda'd 1% assholes from tricking us into spending all our time, money and energy bleaching our assholes instead of making the world a better place.

Oh yes, you heard me. The beauty industry literally has NOTHING LEFT to criticize except our assholes. Our assholes! That's how fucking ridiculous it's gotten. Because now apparently, every woman's asshole is a SHAMEFUL, DIRTY HOLE - unless you spend hundreds of dollars putting peroxide and harmful chemicals on it so that it is prettier and whiter (because whiter = not DIRTY and GROSS), so that "men" will want to fuck our assholes more. BECAUSE HAVING A LIGHT PINK, FUCKABLE ASSHOLE IS REALLY REALLY IMPORTANT EVERYBODY. $75-a-treatment important! (Or do it yourself at home for only $39.95!)

Of course upon hearing this I immediately called fellow Sweet Soul grrl Tristan Risk to hurry over and bleach my asshole. I have a date this weekend dammit!!! I couldn't possibly want anyone to see my DIRTY, UNBLEACHED ASSHOLE. Oh my god, I would like, totally die. (Thankfully friend & photog David Denofreo was there to capture it... you can click to enlarge and get Tristan's technique here).

Hey, you know who I think is a dirty, unbleached asshole? Ummm... how about the fucker who came up with this fucking bullshit?? This is so preposterous that even fucking COSMO is warning their readers against it, and you know it's REALLY bad when THAT happens.

Now of course this is yet another example of a porn-star fad turning mainstream and it deeply, deeply concerns me. Because it sounds absurd but the horrible truth is that it really, really does feel like that being fuckable is the most important quality a woman can possess, over intelligence, creativity, kindness... any other characteristic or accomplishment. Throughout history we've been taught this, both women and men. It's fucking infuriating and unfair and awful but hey, it sells anal bleach! Plus it distracts us from trying to speak up or try to do the things that the men are busy doing like running the country, and it keeps us feeling anxious and shitty and broke and making tanning appointments. As long as we're alll spending our time and money trying to look like pornstars (or a thinly disguised pornstar with tattoos and glasses or whatever), we'll have some semblance of value, self-worth and clout. So I guess we should all keep doing that right?

Oh.. except guess what? While I do enjoy feeling like I'm sexually attractive --- at least to some people, and perferably to one that I too find sexually attractive ---  I DON'T WANT TO SPEND ALL MY TIME OBSESSING OVER THAT, because it's exhausting and honestly, kind of set up to be an unattainable trap. So where does that leave me? Hmm. Sheeeeeeeeeeit.

Now we're obviously touching on the political side of why I do what I do right on the head here so I'm gonna get into it a little. Honestly, I do understand why people are sometimes confused as to how I can be a topless rapping performer who spends thousands every year on costumes and make-up and yet still be a hard-core feminist against asshole bleaching. It actually makes more sense than you might think. At the end of the day it all comes down to calling the shots about where and how I decide to be sexual, instead of having other people decide that for me.

First up, I have never enjoyed having my "fuckability" in ANY WAY be a factor when it comes to people interacting with me other than in a way that involves me possibly also wanting to have sex with them. Whether I'm being interviewed for a job, preparing a seminar for a company, auditioning for a voice-over gig, walking past a construction site, or choosing produce in the grocery store, I am usually not putting myself out there to be measured and evaluated for my fuckability. AND YET, it seems that there are still men in the world who don't really understand that my main purpose in life is not to be sexually appealing to them. This frustrates me to no end. This is why I love my punk rock grrlz, my riot grrlz and my queer friends who aesthetically move away from what is largely considered standard quo as far as "hetero-fuckibility".  YES!! I enjoy them a lot. At the same time, I also enjoy fucking men (as well as women), and my general aesthetic and demeanor is super duper femme (which is still up for debate in terms of whether that's a socialization thing, a past life thing, or just a subjective preference thing).

Enter burlesque. Now, burlesque opens doors for me because as a hyper femme who is a drag-lover by nature (I refer to drag by the general definition as a term for "dressed as a girl"), the idea of disregarding what MEN might think is sexy and instead deciding what I think is sexy is extremely appealing, especially in  the exaggerated level of hyper-sexual lingerie. It's an exercise is reclamation.  What's hilarious is that most of all drag comes from different changing eras of what was once found attractive but then ws pushed aside to make room for the next, thus proving that fashion, allure and style are all fluid and not to be taken too seriously. I can twist all forced and learned beauty standards from all the eras to make them MINE; pull and push and pick and choose and stretch them to fit my own subjective ideals, tastes, tendencies, body. My own personal version of fabulous, tongue in cheek. Then I add my other qualities in layers like words, wit, passion, politics, humour, talents... MY way. Then I take them ALL to the stage and I give my audience PERMISSION to look at me, watch me, enjoy me, hear me. I am not in the checkout at the grocery store. I am not walking down the street. On stage, as in the bedroom with a lover, I am freeing myself. I am giving you the option to see me as a sexual being when and where I choose to. I am in my sexual power. I am representing myself as a multi-layered, dynamic, real woman. It's basically me re-writing the script of my every day reality.

Now as an entertainer, I always want the audience to be entertained, but also I want (hopefully) for this to help build broader scopes of beauty and power; to bring something to them that feels three dimensional and not pure powerless inane sextoy bullshit. New brushstrokes so that in turn people are inspired to run with their own flavour. An expansion for use in the daily struggle. The idea is to hopefully free everyone a little from trying to fit the pornstar fuckability mold (which is EXHAUSTING, I HATE IT) while still admitting that we all want to feel fuckable. Cuz I love to fuck. I do. And straight-up rejecting all beauty aids or pretending that I don't want to be desired is unrealistic, unsustainable and kind of dishonest.

SO that's where my liberation comes from. That's why it feels like progress to me. Ummmkayyyyyy???

Now if we can just get our unbleached assholes onto a bigger platform things might start getting interesting. Heh heh heh ;)

Hold tight Sasspumps. See you at the Art Gallery Saturday.

Huge love & panther growlzzz.


Sunday, October 2, 2011


I've been spending a lot of time alone lately... doing chores, reading, walking. Exercising. Singing. Getting things right in my head. Practicing my performances. (Still always floors me how practicing make you better at things - without fail! So simple. Amazing). As my mother once so accurately observed, for someone oft considered an extrovert, I'm quite introspective. She always made us do that thing around the table at Thanksgiving dinner; you know, where everyone has to take turns saying what they are thankful for. I still remember the little turkey I made in pre-school with a giant pine-cone I picked up off the ground up in Smithers; little construction paper feathers sticking up out of the layers. It was put out on the table every year well into my teens. What a great little kid craft idea. I wonder if she still has it.

I have a billion things on the list right now but a lot of them are minor and random, like for example I'm pumped Esthero is finally working on a new album (called Everything is Expensive, which I fucking love) and I'm really into Coconut Bliss vegan hazelnut fudge ice cream (trust me on this, it is AMAZING. Get some. Go). What can I say... I tend to derive the greatest pleasure in the details. In the end though these are the five biggies.

First and foremost, I am thankful that my sister is alive. I am tremendously proud of her for continuing to fight and heal in the face of a vicious and merciless addiction. I am so, SO grateful that she is here today. She is a survivor and a warrior and a fighter and she inspires the shit out of me. I think about her every day.

My sisters, my sasspots, my gentlemen, my mentors, my heros, my loves, my mirrors, my inspiration, my heart... my family. You make me the trillest, the richest. Thank you.

I am increasingly grateful to understand that there are beautiful and unseen subtleties and complexities in all living things, and in people who choose to represent themselves to me in any form. In turn I understand that my projected stage persona does not represent the entirety of who I am and I'm very grateful to have not been seduced into losing myself into any ultimately self-limiting illusions, despite of my vivid imagination and considerable ego. I am so grateful that that my boots - and heels - hit the ground. I really wanna keep 'em there.

I am insanely, unfathomably grateful for the opportunity to live the way I want to without apology. That I am not necessarily expected to marry a man, bear a child, sleep with my boss, wear conservative clothing or, horror of horrors, hold my tongue. Seriously. Who would I be? I don't even know if that person could exist. Honestly. I know this is not to be taken for granted EVER in our world, and that many have fought for this for me. I am grateful to be a sexually overt performer and a stripper without being shunned, shamed, harassed or written off as stupid, sinful and desperate by the majority of the population. Just two generations ago, I know it was a very different story. I am grateful that I am able to live as I choose.

I am very, very thankful for my voice, and for all the gifts with which I was blessed as a human. I am grateful that these gifts were fostered by my mother, and that they were given fire and purpose by my experiences with my father. I am grateful that I have the courage to do what I feel I am meant to do. To me this is the only real way to show gratitude to the universe for what I have been given, and so I will continue to do share these gifts to the best of my ability. Forever.

Thank you.


Tuesday, September 27, 2011


September 15, 2011 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

It's not just the steady stream of well-liquored guests that have taxis lined up outside the Keefer Bar on Thursday nights. The critically acclaimed Sweet Soul Burlesque dancers have been perfecting their intimate cabaret show there for the past year, glittering visibly from the street through a large picture window.

"The stage is flush up against the patio, so I suppose passers-by - or cab drivers - tend to get a good view," says Crystal Precious, producer and host of the night, with a wink. "Luckily we're not exactly shy."

After 8 years of producing their own shows at various venues around the city (including their own underground venue, the now de-funct Dollhouse Studios), Vancouver's original professional burlesque troupe have settled into a permanent residency at the upscale China Town hotspot. October 6th marks the one year anniversary of the Keefer staff serving up luscious libations along to the fabulous Sweet Soul femmes every Thursday night.

"It just makes perfect sense," says Keefer manager Danielle Tatarin of the partnership. "We're trying to create a sensual experience, but not too serious or pretentious... a place where you know the service and cocktails will be top-notch but can you can still have a laugh and maybe still see something onstage that surprises you." Not satisfied with just straight vintage striptease, the Sweet Soul girls are also known to rap, sing, incorporate magic tricks or add circus feats to the mix.

"We work really hard to keep the show fresh & lively," says Vancouver's infamous rock n' roll flapper, Sweet Soul girl Lola Frost. "It's important to us to present varied takes on what 'sexy' can mean while keeping up the quality of the performances. We want to send the message that it's possible be creative, diverse, sexy and fun all at the same time."

The anniversary show on October 6th will be a grand masquerade, or "Sassquerade", with live feed of the performances projected around the bar. Guests are encouraged to wear masks (or they can use one of the fabulous ones provided at the door). The night's acts will feature group burlettas, special surprise guests and specials from sponsors Cointreau & Jack Daniels. Doors at 9, shows begin at 10pm and last call will be at 1am.


Sweet Sip Thursdays One Year Anniversay Sassquerade Spectacular
October 6th, 2011 @ The Keefer Bar
135 Keefer St, Chinatown Vancouver

Regular admission is $10
For more information, media guest list or more hi-resolution images, please contact

Image attached of Sweet Soul Burlesque's Little Miss Risk by David Denofreo.



About The Keefer Bar:

The Keefer Bar is a place where you can come to escape the rush and unwind in a unique atmosphere where cocktails, food and music are in harmony. The intricately designed cocktail program focuses on Apothecary style drinks created to soothe ailments and balance one’s mood. Ingredients for the Asian influenced small plated food and specially crafted drinks are sourced from local Chinatown markets and herbalists. Bar Manager, Danielle Tatarin and Creative Director, Free Lee work with their team to develop the exceptional atmosphere and unique house made tinctures, bitters, syrups and teas to incorporate into the pre-prohibition influenced drinks.

About Sweet Soul Burlesque:

Sweet Soul Burlesque is Western Canada’s longest running professional neo-burlesque troupe. Founded in 2003 out of a passion for the genuine DIY pin-up grrl culture, Sweet Soul strives to raise the bar by creating fun, ground-breaking burlesque performances that are of unequaled production value. From ribbon staffs to giant venus fly traps to fire tricks to life-sized jack-in-the boxes, each Sweet Soul dancer (Cara Milk, Cherry OnTop, Crystal Precious, Little Miss Risk, Lola Frost & Rita Star) has spent years individually crafting her own persona & performance style. Get ready for a vibrant mash-up of classic striptease with elements of hip hop, underground dance culture & punk rock.

Since their inception, Sweet Soul Burlesque has quickly become internationally reknown and has been featured in the Globe & Mail, CBC Television and Radio, Fashion TV, MuchMusic & MTV and has appeared at hundreds of events & festivals across the continent, from the Pemberton Music Festival to the New York Burlesque Festival. In 2010 they were honoured with a nomination for World’s Best Troupe at the International Burlesque Hall of Fame in Las Vegas.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011


Post modern bananarchy / aries horned warrior belligerence / overflowing everything / red kimono golden dragon / earth harp eye squirting / dmt desertion / ringing temple ultra-catharthis / pink courtney surgery / bike trail follow fallout / chainsaw margheritas / lady-tramp pizza sharing / santa-fucker monkey whipping / deep french quarter release / tiki flaming juice / drum n bass nostalgia kicks / dance floor prosecco church communion / steampunk octopis / FIRE flame fire fire fire flames fire lighta! fire flame fire FIRE / antler mohawk wheelchair motorbike / bronners whipped cream aquarium swimming / gash aggravation / knee scratching / stripper callous celebrating / venus gas-mask g-string bracelet / ladder spinning bed trannie dating / transit ejection pre-resurrection / passion-horse trojan love-explosions / porn-star shower consolations / fire fire fire hand to hand to hand to hand / hugs / touch / stylus sunrise / two be see the endless skies and beauty and light pour and swirl and coat me deeply, finally, ENTIRELY in love like so much playa dust... and LOVE and LOVE and I LOVE and I am LOVED.


A part of me has died. It's gone. Ashes.

It's a new motherfucking ballgame bitches.

Prepare for FIRE.


(Here are some gorgeous photos by Michael Holden of the Man exploding & the Temple at sunrise; for more click here, thanks and love to Michael for these and for all that are forthcoming; I am humbled to find people who can capture this event's epic beauty so well. Um... HOLY FUCKING SHIT. xoxo)

Tuesday, July 12, 2011


WHOA mad blog-withdrawal. I think it's just cuz I've been in music-land and new website-building land and also house-hunting and packing-moving land... unfortunately that shit takes time (where is my cabana team). I don't mind it so much though, all part of the general life upgrade.. you're supposed to work for things to enjoy them fully right? And who knew that kickboxing and the patriarchy go so well together? Not to be even more of a bitch cliche but uhhh... I love that shit. Also it's a fabulous opportunity to wear my vintage Puma wrestling boots. Ideal.

Moving means loud tune listening, and I've been back into the grunge / punk / riot grrl music action like whoa. And just in case you are one of those obnoxious people born in the early nineties (arrrgh, you never get my jokes or Hallowe'en costumes, I was THE BEE GIRL!!!), here is a reason why I keep using two r's when I spell "grrl". Nope, it's not cuz I'm retarded or because I saw some cool chick spell it like that on her blog... actually, oh shit. Wait a minute.

Ok so technically it wasn't a blog, it was a zine, but that was basically the early nineties' answer to the blog, only like, wayyyy harder to do so it was about a billion time cooler. Cuz you had to be fucking dedicated to get your shit together to type something out, find drawings for it and then get it together to steal (I mean borrow) someone's copycard and photocopy it and then staple it and stuff it or whatever and then mail it to say, oh I don't know, some random Canadian prairie capital where a pissed=off, overly-sexed mentally-frustrated teenager with purple hair and bad jewelry awaited EVERY SINGLE WORD. Cuz yah. Doing all that pretty much reeks of effort. Thank god all I have to do now is just type some shit, copy paste some pix / music and as you can see, I can barely find the time to do that. So I think we've established that chicks like Kathleen Hanna who put together the Bikini Kill zine were wayyy baddass.

I must tell you that IF YOU HAVE NOT READ THE RIOT GRRL MANIFESTO you are simply missing out on a key part of Crystal Precious.

Go ahead, read it. If you've read it, read it again. I'll wait for you.


Yay! Good job. Now imagine 'lil ol' me... always that the chick wanting to talk about music, obsess over music, listen to music, wanting to be in a band, go to every rave ever, dance to music, make music... and really not seeing too many other girls doing that. Especially in my high school. Like, none. Just dudes giving me weird looks and telling me I was fun to party with and that I should wear skirts more. Uhhh....

Don't forget we weren't all connected by a click of the mouse back then. If you lived in the middle of the Prairies, you had access to cable TV, select mags, music and that was it. Anything else you had to dig for. I think I was 16 or 17 before we had dial up, I didn't even have an e-mail address until I graduated from highschool. So reading this in print was the first time I'd ever heard anyone ever say anything like this, much less write it in a tangible form, and I knew as I was reading it it had been mailed out to thousands of other girls (I mean grrlz) just like me. It was kind of a big deal. It made things seem possible. It changed my life.

Of course I'm not the kind of person to follow someone else's mantra to the letter, and these days I'm thinking about this in the context of whole new category of underground performance art / community building. I also have much more complicated thoughts about capitalism and about how our general economic structure affects the way we relate to one another, and how women, especially women with high media profiles, fit into that. But aside from those mental amendments I don't think these manifesto words have ever left me. The truths and hopes and resolves they instilled in my little teenage heart are as clear to me as on the first day they settled there. I am forever grateful to them and to Ms Hanna for making me feel like I wasn't the only grrl on the planet. It made me excited to meet new grrlz and maybe team up with them and maybe... make some music.

Sooo first thing's first... I started skipping highschool a lot (best decision of my life, seriously) and found some theatre / music kids to hang out with, some of whom I'd met through the raves and inner city house parties. Hanging out with like-mindeds made me feel a little braver. Consequently I started my first band at 15 with Steve Ferminiuk on bass, David Gregoire & Mitch Delot on guitars, and a serious metal kid on drums. We were called... wait for it... Sodom & Gamorrah. Severe right? My dad thought we were super annoying. Lots of screaming and leather. It was perfect. Mostly originals, we had songs called "Cancer" and "Mrs. Alexander". We also did a few covers... "Long Snake Moan" from PJ Harvey's To Bring You My Love album, for example. Not gonna lie, I'm simultaneously relieved and saddened that no evidence remains of good ol' Sodom. This was obviously before Pro-Tools and Logic or even the common ownership of laptops. We played our debut show in the basement of a bingo hall near Grant Park Shopping centre (I wonder if that was where I got the idea to put on burlesque shows in halls. Might've been. We got away with murder there). After that it was Ozzy's in the basement of the Osbourne Hotel, the all ages metal bar under the Zoo. Someone there saw me do my thing and later at a party asked if I would try out for the band that would ultimately became Moses Mayes (it was called Supershagg then). I was 16. They liked me. Yeah both bands were pretty much all dudes, but still. It was Winnipeg and I had a band. And they let me do what I wanted, for the most part, I wrote all my own vox and lyrics. And so CP took her first wee steps.

Lately I'm finding I'm kind of scratching my head again. It's like, oh shit, Oprah quit... phewf, we still have Tina Fey. But its weird because I've spent a lot of time figuring out how to NOT be pissed off about sexism in my industry (and yes, many pills of ecstasy were consumed during this period.... works great, try it out). My conclusion is that I think some people are taking advantage of the irony card now. Like, there is so much un-PC satirical humour out there now that some assholes are relying on the assumption that people will just trust that they are joking when actually they aren't... they are just being really sexist. And the fact remains that mainstream media is still what SUPER impressionable 12, 13, 14 year-olds are seeing, regardless as to whether they will ultimately find solace in some alternative sub culture... or whether they will even want to. And while I have to laugh at blatant sexism when it's just absurdly offensive and therefore impressive in its uncensored glory, I don't want to be doing that as often as I am lately. Like, still not really laughing at the c-rap hip-pop music videos. They're not even trying to be ironic. Like really???? STILL?????? I wrote my rebuttle to that like 9 years ago. Big surprise that I'm kind of narrowing my eyes a bit and writing rhymes that feel like they belong in a Sodom and Gamorrah song.

Was this happening the whole time I was at the rave? How come the gays have like 9 channels now and we're still oiled up doing crotch moves in the Akon video 80 times a day?

I really love posting this Cazwell video because my good friend Isaac said something I think is probably really true about it... straight guys watch this very video and feel the same way that we feel every time we see a video-ho video. Try it. It's an indescribable feeling... not all bad, but definately unsettling. One difference though is that the dude in this vid has the distinct advantage of obviously being the one in charge here. In the flip version the females wouldn't be in charge and would be sitting on everyone's laps. Also I can't embed this vid from YouTube because its flagged as adult content. Think it'd be flagged if it was chicks? Fuck naww... you'd be watching it at 9:30 in the morning on MuchMusic while you eat your Wheaties and get ready for school. Just calmly pointing that out. NBD.

Again, it's CAZWELL'S ICE CREAM TRUCK. Just try it out. Now imagine having to see this sort of thing EVERY DAY OF YOUR LIFE EVER, often SEVERAL TIMES A DAY. See why it starts to fucking piss us off after awhile?

In other news, I totally need some ice cream now that is completely unrelated to this video. I swear.

big love and grrrrrrrrl growlz

PS: If you are in Vancouver this Friday and you are not on the giant steampunk pirate ship party cruising around the city as the sun sets, I seriously question your judgement. LIKE SERIOUSLY. This will be epic beyond all things conceivable. Boarding starts at 7pm, we set sail at 8pm. 750 Pacific Blvd. MAKE IT HAPPEN.

Friday, April 29, 2011

The Crystal Precious Bitch Grrl Guide to Voting


So whatever, apparently the Canadian government is putting ELECTIONS in the middle of my sooooper busy schedule. HELLOOOOOOO, this is supposed to be the most joyful time of year (aka the Burlesque Festival). G-strings are snapping, heels are clicking, Dress-Sew is cha-chinging and my giddy hand-clapping / air-humping speeds are increasing with staggering velocity. Obviously it's like SO distracting to have to see Stephen Harper's SUPER unsassy face like 80 times a day and hear about his evil plans to destroy everything that I hold near and dear (i.e. art, trees, gays & abortions, so you know, basicially shit I need to live). SO FUCKING INCONVENIENT.

I guess this means that even though I'm totally swamped with UBER-important duties like making undies shaped like pie, smuggling crystal-encrusted toilets over the border and talking to the press about bloodwrestling, at some point I'll need to put down the glue gun, go to an offensively colour-schemed gymnasium and put a check next to someone's fucking name so that the Harper government doesn't futher impede my ultimate life's work of being really, REALLY fucking fabulous. Sigh.

I figured that if you're anything like me (i.e. barely dressed and sort of drunk most of the time), you'll probably also find this idea somewhat unappealing. So I've come up with a step-by-step program designed to help alleviate any questions, efforts and general distaste around this whole "voting" business so that you can just get 'er done and get back at it. After all, exercising our democratic right doesn't have to suck THAT much. Right?

I give you:

The Crystal Precious Bitch Grrl Guide to Voting - By Crystal Precious

Step 1 - Ignore all election propaganda EXCEPT MINE.

Moooo hahahahahah. Ok really though, I know this is a ballsy-ass bitch thing to say, but uhhh... we have met right? I mean, you can read and research all that shit if you want to, but unless you like feeling overwhelmed, infuriated, bored and FRUSTRATED by all the biased-anyway shit on the internet and in the press, lemme tell you a secret: for THIS ELECTION, plain and simple, it's all about bringing Harper down. Dude is prety much living in the stone-age... he's the ultimate homophobic arts-raping capatilist war-mongering douche nozzle. He nose is so far up Bush's ass that you know he's about to start building pipes from the tar sands right into Washington's frickin' helicopter gas tanks. DO NOT TRUST THE BEEDY EYES. Case in point: anyone who needs to take pictures of himself with a kitten to prove he's not evil has "OVERCOMPENSATION" screaming from every pore. You just can't argue with me on that one.

Now beyond my dramatic psycho-hose-beast rant insults (soooo satisfying), this sums it up: just because I like wearing DRESSES from the 50's doesn't mean I feel like RE-defending our right to choose, working for equal pay or eating pussy if I feel like it, UMMMMMMMkayyyy??? I'm too busy. MMmmffffmurgle.

Step 2 - Figure Out Who To Vote For by going to and typing in your postal code.

It might seem sketchy to blindly follow the advise of this site, but it's pretty legit. If this were any other year I would encourage you to "educate yourself, make your own decisions, really get in touch with how you feel, blah blah blah", but honestly, because of the support the Conservative (Harper) govenment has with religious and brainwashed old-school voters, voting for the candidate you actually believe might actually not be helpful this time around. The need is to defeat the Conservatives / "Tories" in enough ridings to prevent Harper's evil minions from getting the most seats in parliament and therefore being able to dominate the vote on every bloody decision with smug little smiles from hell. Sometimes that means voting for some asshole you probably wouldn't have. Fine. If I can tolerate Sarah Michelle Gellar as Buffy for seven fucking seasons, I'm pretty sure I can vote for a Liberal if I have to. Luckily I live in a riding where an NDP win is pretty much guaranteed so I don't have to. But I would. PS: Faith = so hot.

Step 3 - Grab your ID

... if you can find the pants you were wearing on Tuesday when you last went out drinking, which I can't but whatever. You can also grab some mail with your address on it, or your health card and someone with ID who is willing to swear you live where you live. Either one works.

Despite what you may have heard, it's SO RIDICULOUSLY easy to register and vote. It's wayyyyyy easier than other annoying things, like, say, flagging down a server at Foundation, ordering a fancy coffee when you're stoned (SO HARD) or convincing the Fido assholes that it's NOT FUCKING WATER DAMAGE. You can register at exactly the same place and time of voting right before, or online.

Just click on the damn link:

It tells you what you need as far as ID (tons of options, I'm sure you have one of them), where to go and when. It's very easy and clear. Even my mom could do it and she generally has a panic attack about anything related to computers or the internet. Sorry Mom. You're getting better. I love you.

Step 4 - Make a plan as to WHEN YOU ARE GOING to vote. Enlist partners in crime who will shame you to follow through.

This way you have someone to help you get your shit together on the day of in case you get really busy being hungover or (shudder) working. I find that it's helpful to promise yourself rewards and or / fun activities to do do afterwards with your voting friends, i.e. Tristan and I are going to vote together & then we are going to Ghetto Mall to look at new fun hooker shoes (yayyy!!!). TRY not to plan the time you are voting near the last minute, because inevitably you will get distracted by the delivery guy or the end of True Blood or the seductively growing comments list on your recent status update (that FB shit is evil, I swear these fuckers are trying to get us to miss our whole damn lives).

Step 5 - Vote damn you.

Once in the afore-mentioned ghastly school gymnasium, just keep your eyes on the prize. Ignore all the muggles who are muttering under their breath at you. They're just jealous of your outfits. They can't actually smell the whiskey on your breath or see the glitter from last night's show still smeared on your eyes, TRUST ME. And if anyone gets too close, just yell "YAY CANUCKS!" (apparently that's some hockey team... it will distract them and make them like you, at least long enough for you check the right box and shove your ballot in the slot thing).

Step 6 - Feel great about being PATRIOTIC and laugh maniacally when Stephen Harper FAILS to OPPRESS US

I recommend a deep, deep belly laugh beginning with MOOOOO HAHAHHAHAAHHAHhahahahaha. Honestly though, I mean, really. You can't chuck a glowstick without hitting a burlesque dancer or a raver in the face these days, right? IF WE ALL VOTE, there's no reason that fucker can't get put right back into MINORITY seating and stay away from our gahdamn right to be the suuuuuuuuper fabulous queer lovin' birth-controlled arts-loving stripping sasspots we are deep, deep down inside. SO DO IT. Or I will have sadface, and that's not attractive.

I love you all. See you at the polls.

kittens n' kix



This is how showgrrrlz feel about you Stephen.. so stop getting your face in the way of our high heels and LET. THE. KITTEN. GO.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

RIP ElizabethTaylor - You showed us how Diva was done.

I always particularly admired Elizabeth Taylor. When I went through my initial classic movie obsession (circa 1999, to be heavily revisited again in 2004), I seriuosly nerded out on countless library books about all the golden era sirens... and her stories were generally far more interesting than anyone else's. Perhaps because girlfriend was always in charge. There was no helpless damsel in Elizabeth Taylor. No preyed upon starlet who couldn't wait to meet the approval of a dubiously intentioned studio head. No "au naturel" bullshit anti-glam girl-next-door marketing angle. She was a straight up megastar, and one who actually accepted and understood the extent of her potential and power. I think this is rare. I also think that this is what made her such a strong voice... one that was actually heard.

Of course the flipside of this is that it also made her a D-I-V-A. The tortured love affairs, the candid responses to controversial headlines, the insistance that the breakfast table be dressed to match her outfits everyday while shooting... but she knew her worth. Enter celebrity branding. She was the OG!!! Think about it. You basically aren't famous now unless you have a perfume. Even frickin'AKON has a bloody perfume. Not so dumb that Lizzy... cuz if there's one thing that keeps selling long after the hits fade away, it's a smell that people associate as "theirs". Hey, I bet it's what'll keep Britney in Doritos... cuz I'm not sure if the music thing is really working out for her lately.

But I digress. Liz was an innovator. I perhaps admire her most for her work in Suddenly, Last Summer, a controversial film that is close to my own heart both for its anti-homophobia subtext and its out-and-out protest against the use of nerve-damaging treatments for psychiatric conditions. At the time these topics were of the greatest taboo and I applaud her for her fearless portrayal that defied the censors.. her incinuations gave them no grounds to cut out even the most obvious of dual meanings from Tenessee Williams' brilliant script. I really can't tell you how much I enjoyed that picture. I watched it early one Winnipeg morning, after a long night, at the age of 16. I'll never forget it.

So yeah. Basically Ms. Taylor was a brilliant, passionate and talented performer as well as an innovative business woman who was uncompromising in her political stance, her own artistic vision and her loyalty to her friends. IN THE FRICKIN' 50s!!! An until today. Pretty much the dopest. Oh yeah, and she was a BABE and she enjoyed that shit instead of denying that her babedom had anything to do with the rest of her life. So in other words, Liz Taylor was my hero. Amd those who know me know I don't really plan on getting married.... but I'm pretty sure that if I was the marrying type, I'd probably do it 8 times. Helloooooo...... dresses and flowers and sparkly things? Yeah. Bring it. As she once said "Big girls need big diamonds".

The Toronto Star said today that Elizabeth Taylor was an "accidental feminist". Uhhh... Star peeps....I think you accidentally forgot to replace the word "accidental" with "LEGENDARY".

Huge love to you Ms. Taylor. May the next world be so lucky.

With great & deep respect,

Friday, March 11, 2011



Long time no blog. Biggest reason? Lotsa shows. And straight-up, I'm a glowy-ass bitch because of 'em, not gonna lie. I can't really say that there's anything I'd rather be doing: fresh staging', a little traveling, striphopping, writing new lyrics, laughing with my homies and geeking out something heavy... especially online, as per usual. What can I say, I'll always be that (digital) zine obsessed grrl. :) Although I have to say I'm pretty sad about the recent deaths of some my faves. Tear. MISSBEHAVE is probably the one I miss the most... FAAACK always such a good read. Click here link to read what I feel is a great article about its demise. I totally feel like that. It's like, hey... I respect all women's choices... but stop getting knocked up and leaving awesome publications, you selfish bitches!! AT least leave the fucking website up. Like, really. I super miss Michelle Baldwin at BUST too. Although those Charlie Sheen cross-stich patterns are pretty cute. BTW, who's dick do I have to suck to get my hands on a hard-copy of that mag in Vancouver? I can't. Find it. Anywhere. Not even Satan's Library (ie Chapters) has it. SUPER weird. I better not find them all under Stephen Harper's fucking bed. Just sayin'.

But yeah, busy month. Headed up to Whistler to unleash some Sweet Soul wrath on the cuteness that was the crowd at the GLC... pretty sure I busted a stomach muscle when Tristan (Little Miss Risk) pulled an ENTIRE string of pearls out of her pussy, dropped them in a glass and poured champagne all over them. Chug, chug, chug. The snowboarder screams were deafening. TOTALLY busted someone trying to steal the glass afterwards too. Always attracting the crazies, that one. Totally nuts, and totally brilliant. She's one of the bestest friends I've ever had.

So when Tris recently busted out her blog chops again (check it HERE, it's amazing), I decided I better get back on the train. I always have lots to write about but at the same time I feel like shit is happening wayyyyyyyyy faster than I can type. Last month I was stoked to get to do 12 shows, including a stint in the arctic for Rendezvous Festival. I laid vox for my first track with Woodhead, practiced the 5 more I have ready for the studio and wrote new lyrics for three more (woohooo!!). And I also juried over 100 submissions for the 6th Annual Vancouver International Burlesque Festival and chaired a bunch of production meetings for it... which by the way is gonna be THE DOPEST EVER. Unfortch some of the changes we're making this year were a little more difficult to put into practice than I was expecting but you do what you have to I guess... I'm including a public statement about that I made last week at the end of this blog. As John Woods of The Wet Spots quoted from Woody Allen immediately following the statement's release: "Part of show business is business. Otherwise they would have called it show show."

But yeah. If you factor in the need to make time for dancing, goofing off, drinking extra tasty cocktails and watching sci-fi movies while gluing crystals to shit... less blog. I guess to be honest I just still always feel like I need to write these huge long FINISHED edited, photo-accented story blogs that take 3 sittings and 8 cups of tea to perfect. What's up with that? Total bullshit. Sometimes I gotta slap myself and remember that I can do whatever the hell I want. What if I did some longer, more complete stories like my usual steez AAAAND ALSO some shorter, more abstract shit more often? More links and videos, random thoughts... pix. Why the fuck not??? One of my bigger goals for this month is to get my full site back up and running so it can have lots of little nooks and crannies to cram with sass. The Sweet Soul Burlesque website is getting an overhaul as well. Gonna be stepping that shit up a notch. Sloughing off excess... tightening things up. Inside and out.

Speaking of tightening, that crazy Tristan bitch is also getting me back into waist training, that peer pressuring little hussy. As a part-time corset fetishist and admitted occasional sub I must say I do quite like the bound-ed-ness, and as far as body-mods go, corset sinching has always appealed to me because it shapes the body without a huge focus on weight loss. And although I've definately been stepping up my fitness game these days, I'm always gonna be a curvy bitch... and corsets just amplify that whole steez. Nothing wrong with that. Since Tristan is actually going so far as to measure and record her progress, I was thinking it might be fun to do my own corset training progress blog alongside hers but like, the way a NOT totally insane person would do it. Because um... that bitch is nuts. 14 hours a day?!! Fuck that shit. Puhlayyyyyyyse.

So yeah, expect to hear about that. Also I gotta say that my affair with bass is more serious than ever. You're gonna hear about it. I so so miss those dark damp days in the basement of Redgate or at Secret Location (both underground Van spots where CP got her rave on when dubstep broke out)... still love discovering the latest mind-shattering 50 foot waves.

I'm really obsessed with Kryptic Minds at the moment. Gonna leave you with one of my favorite tunes by them:

0.2. Kryptic Minds . One Of Us by whisperd33

Oh yeah, and here's the statement for the Burlesque Fest below.

Kisses n' kuffs,

(posted March 2nd)

My Esteemed Tassled Colleagues...

I just wanted to say a few things around the intention behind the burlesque festival’s changes this year, namely, the application process, the production cast caps and the reduced number of spots in the showcase.

I understand that this shift is a bit of a shock. For years the Vancouver festival has been extremely inclusive and the application process for VIBF fairly relaxed in comparison to other festivals. I think up until now, this has been totally appropriate and consistent with past years’ primary focus of uniting a very large and very eclectic community. We wanted to help everyone join forces, encourage each other, inspire each other, share ideas, create allies… to acknowledge and bridge each groups’ efforts by sharing one large stage.

I think this has been an enormous success. I mean, OBVIOUSLY there will always be differences, but that’s also kind of the point. Vancouver has an astounding community that is extraordinarily diverse, yet it remains largely connected and supportive. It’s one of the biggest burlesque epicenters in THE WORLD, for eff’s sake. It rules. We know this.

Having said that, at some point I think it’s important to understand that the festival has another purpose, one that I would argue is now actually more important than trying to provide stage time for everyone. Because the truth is that most of us are getting some form of stage time out there at this point, and I mean veterans and newbies alike. Haven’t you noticed the influx of new productions, and regular monthly / weekly nights around the city? It’s insane (and amazing). Straight-up though, I think it’s pretty safe to say that if you put some reasonable effort into getting involved and learning the ropes, I’m pretty sure you can get yourself onto a stage. Which is truly fabulous. Productions and opportunities to get onstage aren’t lacking at all. What we really need to keep all these amazing productions going – and growing - are AUDIENCES.

The festival is a key opportunity to put collective energy into drawing NEW AUDIENCE MEMBERS to burlesque shows… people who have never seen any of us before. Total strangers. New ticket buyers. People who hit one show a year that we hope to turn into regular burlesque-goers. Because the more ticket-buyers to go around, the more shows keep getting to be produced, the more talent gets stage-time for (hopefully) better fees… and not to mention the less competitive we all need to be year-round in terms of promotion. And although our current crowds are so so crucial (and appreciated), I do believe that we need to sustain a genuine interest in burlesque that goes BEYOND our beloved friends, colleagues and current supporters. We need to draw from a bigger well. WE NEED MORE PEOPLE IN THOSE SEATS at every one of the productions in town. I really believe that THIS is what that will keep the scene alive, healthy and growing.

This is why we’re doing the night at the Vogue. It’s not just so we can all perform on a fancy stage. We made that choice because it’s in the MIDDLE of Vancouver’s major entertainment district and will draw major attention from tons of new people. And if we could afford to all three nights there, we would. Hopefully next year, we will be able to.

So think about it for a moment. Say we get a bunch of new people into this festival show (which we hopefully will because the theatre is MASSIVE and costs one billion dollars). These people don’t know us. They don’t care about the politics going on in our scene. They don’t care that so-and-so has been involved for this long or did this favour for so-and-so. They don’t get inside jokes, and they don’t know whether we have an absolutely 100% fair representation of each crew. They aren’t going to appreciate or understand why we would have super long sets of often VERY similar numbers in order to be inclusive to those who applied, and they are not impressed if they see a number that seems under-prepared. None of these things are going to to help us get them into burlesque show seats again. I’m being straight-up here. it’s not. People are picky and broke these days. They need more than that.

What WILL encourage new audiences to check out more shows is because they remember a good variety of quality acts for THE ENTIRE SHOW, feeling genuinely entertained, inspired, surprised and impressed. They want to feel like they got their money’s worth; that it wasn’t too long or repetitive, that preparation went into the pieces, that the vibe was great, the production smooth and that they had a great time. THIS is what will hopefully draw them back consider on a regular basis. Maybe year-round. Maybe to a show starring you.

So now hopefully it is starting to make sense why we are asking people to be specific about which exact numbers they want to do, submitting videos to gauge their capacity for preparation and professionalism, and who exactly they are planning to include with no substitution. Because at same time of tightening things up, we are also still trying to present a cross-section of troupes, performers and performance styles. SO maybe Dancer A & B both submitted amazing fan dances… but we only pick Dancer B because we know for sure that Dancer A is in a group number with her troupe. And so forth.

As for the cast number caps: this is HONESTLY based on safety standards and the need for smooth backstage production. The downstairs dressing rooms at the Rickshaw have been renovated and divided since last year. The Vogue’s dressing rooms are smaller still. These caps were not given to us as an option after last year. It is EXTREMELY unfortunate that this does not allow for the large group numbers as some troupes are accustomed to. I am honestly upset about this. Hopefully next year this can be considered and planned for by everyone. I sincerely apologize that more advance notice could not have been given around this. But that's just how it went down this year.

So. THAT’s the big picture. THAT’s why the focus of the festival is starting to go towards a tighter production AS WELL AS making efforts to represent all corners of the community. It’s about polishing up things up onstage and backstage, presenting a cross-section of our very best work, puffing up our feathers and saying to giant crowds of new people: Hey!!! Guess what? We’re strippers and freaks…. but we have actual entertainment value that's on par with going to the movies, theatre or concerts! Artistic merit! Political relevance even! WE DESERVE YOUR MONEY. Come back and give it to us, year-round, so we can keep doing this. And do it more. And make it better.

My longtime hope is that we all collectively continue to grow, and that we will steadily increase the visibility, representation, and integration of REAL grassroots burlesque groups in the mainstream media and entertainment industry. This I think would make many people very very happy. We need to represent, especially in the wake of so much hype and mis-understanding around what we do these days. And at the end of the day I really hope that for most of us, the burlesque movement isn’t just about each of us getting to dance around on a big stage so we can get clapped at. For me this is wayyyyy bigger than that. We have the power to change the way people look at women (predominantly although men too), at stripping & sexuality, at DIY culture. This is what drives me to do this still after all these years... because I see it happening. And it's astounding.

So yeah. I really hope that people understand that there is a method to the madness under all this. And if you were not selected to perform at an event this year, this DOES NOT MEAN you are not an important part of the community or that you are deliberately being snubbed. It doesn’t. AT ALL. Please try to remember the big picture and that (we hope) it is all part of our eventual WORLD DOMINATION. In banana suits. And ass tassels.

That’s all I wanted to say.

Thanks for reading all this.

With huge love & true respect for each of you,



President, VIBF Board of Directors

Vancouver International Burlesque Festival

Thursday, February 3, 2011

A small note about consciousness.

Ummkayy... it just feels wayyyy too fucking trivial to post my Shambhala blog while thousands scream so hard into the desert across the world. Sitting here in my happy little zebra print corner, tucked full of Nature's Path organic oatmeal, listening to carefully plucked pieces of the seventies... trying to decide when I've seen enough through the little magic screen on my lap. Such a precious princess. And everything through the angled window; the access to which I now suddenly notice I've been taking for granted.

I've turned the sub back onto the sound system that used to thump alongside my Ari Gold moments in Dollhouse's pink office. Usually I turn it off at night so the baby upstairs can sleep. Side note: I have this feeling that if I ever have a baby, she'll NEED bass waves to sleep. We'll have to put her across the house from the turntables so they can hit her properly. Dream.

That ol' inner conflict wails around inside me about social consciousness... you know. Hiphop, events, speech, existence. Usually the conflict doesn't get much air time. I start feeling around the darkness and then decide I don't like it. How bout we light it up with glitter and lasers and music instead? Yayyyy. It normally takes me about 5 minutes to reach this decision. Another convenient camouflage of the last little fibers of insecurity I feel around my profession; trying to fit them all into the solution somehow. It's like stuffing a headdress into a parachute bag.

What can I say? I'm a good time girl. A weapon of mass distraction. It's just what I'm best at. Or so voices tell me.

Back to the conflict. See? Distraction. I'm good at it ;) SO how conscious is conscious "enough"? Do I have to strip to stop the war or can I just be entertaining? Is escapism really senseless, or is escapism senseless just in excess?

I would argue the second on both counts. The thing is that when I hit the party, straight-up, I don't want anyone's morals shoved down my throat along with my pill and whiskey shot. I deal with everyone else's opinions all day, my whole life. And really - it's not like when I open my make-up case I suddenly forget that I'm alive.

I think that for me, sometimes I just want to be around people who know there's more to a person than what she presents in a pretty pink blog. That there's more to a person than a measure of one's met expectations. That there's also richness, thought patterns, feelings, contributions, reactions... sensitivity to pain and hunger. You know, like, humanity and stuff. Those basic universal aspects that make us just like everyone, everywhere.

And then I want to catch the eye of someone on the dance floor and acknowledge that the two of us are busy having one of those moments of freedom... physically, mentally, creatively... and that we are so so so so lucky. We are So. Fucking. Lucky.

I am so lucky.

It's not much to know I guess. But I'm conscious of it.