Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Twerkshopz in the Bubble Realm !! PLUS CP's Totally Unsolicited Thoughts on Dance Floor Etiquette

(postin' early since my week is cray cray town...)

So whateves,  I know I just updated my Crystal Precious First Timer's Guide to Festival Raving and I don't want to get all carried away here and act like I totally think I know everything about everything ever, BUT... ummm...  I have fucking opinions. OH LOOK, MY BLOG. I can haz put them here?? OH WAIT, that's what it's FOR??! Purrrrfect. Heh heh. Heh

Bass Coast is coming up sooooooo soon (so soon!! THIS WEEKEND SOON!!! SPARKLING) soooo I just wanted to have a minute to talk about my most favorite places on planet earth: dance floors. Where I do all the dancing. Because it is so awesome, like, for your SOUUUUULL (deep echo-ey serious voice). Literally dancing has been a main part of my life since I first figured out how to do it with my tiny toddler feet, so you can imagine how much it means to me to have safe rad supportive places to do that in front of rad speaker systems to rad music. AND GUESS WHAT?? I keep finding new pockets of people who ALSO LOVE THESE THINGS. Extra super convenient!!! CHECK IT:

Here are some shots of the Dance Hall twerkshop we talk about in the vid. UM, RADNESS. 

And here's me below at the workshop last week (that's me in all black in the back row)! SO FUN!! There is another one TONIGHT in East Vancouver at 7:30pm, hit the Light Twerkerz page & message them for more info, and stay tuned for more twerkshopz coming soon! 

In the meantime, I figured I'm put in my ten cents worth of general thoughts on the topic of being a part of a ridiculously awesome dance floor. I LOVE DANCE FLOORS, and I wanna protect them, like the rain forest or the honey beez. I feel, for the love of booty, that we must keep them SAFE. 

Crystal Precious' Totally Unsolicited Thoughts on Dance Floor Etiquette.  By Crystal Precious. 

1. KNOW YOU ARE ENTERING THE BUBBLE REALM. It is my belief that whenever you step onto a dance floor, you are essentially adding yourself to a tiny eco-system made up of dozens and dozens of different personal-space bubbles. By entering this bubble realm, you are basically affirming that you are “with it” / conscious / physically aware enough to respectfully co-exist harmoniously within it. Your own bubble glides easily around the other bubbles while they all float happily in their own merry way to the dope music. So if you are really really, REALLY clumsily drunk or feel the need to spastically fling yourself about, do not enter this realm. DO NOT BE A BUBBLE POPPER. 

Now, because one of the most annoying parts of not being aware is uh, well, being unaware of your un-aware-ed-ness, hopefully you have friends that will tell you when you are unintentionally bubble-popping. If they do that, lemme tell ya something: LISTEN.  :) 

2. DON'T TAKE OTHER PEOPLE'S BUBBLES PERSONALLY. Some people's bubbles are bigger than others'. If you start dancing next to someone and you notice them stepping back, TAKE a CUE and give them the space they need. 

To be honest, I kinda feel that the SAME GOES for HUGS, and not just on dance floors. Especially at festivals. People are EVERYWHERE and sweaty and fucked up and intense, and sometimes the idea of continuously hugging everyone can get overwhelming, especially if drugs are involved on either side. SO DON'T TAKE IT PERSONALLY if someone doesn't go in for a hug, or if they step back when you go in for one.  Just give 'em a high-five or whatever instead, all good.  And most certainly, DO NOT insist that they hug you or “give you a kiss”. That reeks of awkwardness and straight-up, isn't really that empowering. Remember, not getting hugged is not necessarily a statement as to whether or not that person likes you. It's just about where they are in that moment. 

3. REMEMBER THAT THE DANCE FLOOR IS THE VIBE. You're not just adding to it.. you ARE it. So, if I may be so bold as to suggest... DANCE. :) Awesome energetic dance floors = awesome vibes. Personally I would avoid doing things like, oh, say standing DIRECTLY in front of the DJ booth scream-talking to your friend for an extended period of time about something unrelated while everyone else is trying to get down. As you probably guessed, this has happened to me a few times, once at a groovy chill deep bass night. Literally two girls were yelling at each other over the music about some drama at her dayjob for like 10 minutes, screaming directly in front DJ's set-up as though the rest of us weren't even there. Someone finally politely pointed out to them nicely that perhaps they could do that over on the sidelines. I agreed, because..

4. TRY TO RESPECT WHEN PEOPLE ARE IN their DANCE “ZONES".  When someone comes up and tries to start a full-on conversation with me while I'm obviously deep in a blissed out zone of dancing, I'll be honest... it always confuses the fuck out of me. To me its akin to waking someone up from a beautiful dream or like, taking away the delicious Yolk's they just waited in line for. No sense making. There's tons of great places are to have a catch-up chat: the sidelines, further back on the dance floor (like where people are more just standing / nodding / hanging out), the chill-out spaces, or at the bar / camp, or even the bathroom line-up (personally I feel the bathroom line-up catch-ups are totally rad way to sweeten a wait) or like 10 000 other places. You know where ISN'T maybe? Right in the very front of a giant 100 000 watt sound system. Just sayin'. 

Honestly, some of the best bonding moments I've ever had have come from a short embrace, the FEW words exchanged, or even just that shared look or nod on the dance floor... you know, that confirmed understanding between two people that everything is FUCKING AWESOME at that moment. Full-on conversation mode right in front of the speakers? Not so much. No offense, but I can't really hear you anyway. Even if I'm nodding and smiling, I probably have no idea what you said.

5. TEXT LATER, DAMN YOU. If you suddenly stop in the middle of a raging dance floor to tuck your head down text, you are effectively mentally taking yourself out of what is happening around you. I'm just gonna come out with my personal bias here: I personally find it confusing to see people not being fully present at these thoughtfully produced events into which they themselves put a bunch of money of energy into attending. Why? Seriously. May I humbly suggest that you fully immerse yourself and enjoy your dancefloor moments! Wait til you need to take a break, step to the sidelines, drink water, reply to your text or tweet your update. Cuz honey, they can wait. Trust me. I realize it's the future, but you are still in charge of your raving life. And rave hard you must.

6. CIGARETTES ON DANCEFLOORS ARE DEEPLY UNPOPULAR. Sawwwry 'bout it, but this is what I've generally found. Personally, I love the occasional smoke when I'm partying... but – and you know this --- people who hate cigarette smoke really fucking hate it. It infects their bubbles, and bubble respect must be maintained I feel. SO I hang back or on the side-lines if I want to have a smoke, not where people are really getting down. Also, not goin' lie, I will never forgive the girl who flailed her LIT cigarette into my de-collatage while she was dancing and not only burnt my dress, but my precious, precious cleavage. And then I couldn't find it because it had like, fallen into my outfit and burnt two other places trying to find it. HELL to the NNNAWW. :( The good news is that it seems like vapes and joints are still ok as long as there is a certain amount of conscious-ness administered when using them. I think it may have to do with the fact that everyone is being more mindful about where the joint is, cuz they wanna smoke some. :)

7. DON'T TOUCH.  Might seem obvious, but I'm always surprised how many people think its ok to reach out and touch my fringey bra or my corset or whatever on the dance floor. Nope. With the exception for the hand-on-shoulder / hand-on-elbow "excuse me" or “hey, I need to get your attention for some reason”, there is never a reason for you to touch someone or their costumes, ever, unless you get their permission, no matter what they are wearing, or the way they are dancing. Usually people will make it very very clear if they want to dance with you.. and if not, I would almost always assume that they are going back to doing their own thing in their own bubble.

8. MIND YOUR WINGS and BACKPACKS, ummkayyy. I always wince when I see the cute grrl in in the faery outfit with the GIANT wings accidentally poke out the eye of the equally cute dude she hasn't even had a chance to meet yet. If you are a faery and want to wear your wings on the outside come festy time, might I suggest buying a pair of dancefloor-friendly ones (Kelsey Faery makes some, I have a pair in white. Key piece.]). But for real, sharp points and blinding lights and heavy backpacks and water bottles in the middle of the floor that roll around... eff. Just keep your shit in your bubble, raver. :)

9. IF SOMEONE IS BEING INAPPROPRIATE and DOESN'T RESPOND to boundaries, FOR THE LOVE OF EFF, TELL SECURITY. You are not making a scene. You are simply impeding unpleasantness from continuing, Bubble Protector.  One of the things that always made me really upset at [our old venue] Dollhouse is hearing AFTER the fact if someone was being uncool or harassing people on the dance floor. So frustrating, because one report early on usually nips that shit in the bud. There is almost always security overlooking different parts of the dance floor and they are LITERALLY being paid to deal with shit like that. Saying something doesn't have to be a big deal... like you can just saddle up and be like, “hey, uh, so-and-so is super wasted, kinda borderline inappro at the mo... maybe keep an eye out”, or “hey, so just wanting to mention that that random dude rubbed up on me without permission, who is that dude? Will you keep an eye on him?" Usually security will just go warn them very discreetly and in my experience, most people will stop any behaviour instantly the moment they know security is on them. So for the sake of EVERYONE, please please please say just say something. 

10. PARTICIPATE! DANCE. Don't be AFRAID to BE THE FIRST crew on the floor if that's what it takes. Honestly there is wayyyy too much too-cool-for-schoolness that happens, I think, and not enough taking advantage of what dancin' can do for you. It's soooo great at loosening up and letting go of all the old crap in your system you don't need any more. You know the expression "shake it off"? Yah. Cuz that's why. :) Also it just getz blood pumpin and energy flowin and all that hot ass flush in your FACE that I love so much. ;) Iz hotness. Make it happen. 

You'll see my ass werrrrrrkin' at Bass Coast for sure... really pumped to bring my grrl Melody Mangler for her VERY FIRST outdoor festical experience! We're performing at 10pm on Saturday at Main Stage, and AS ALWAYS at Keefer Bar this coming Thursday. We have a special twerker for ya this week, Miss Villainy Loveless... last week she actually cartwheeled up onto the wall in a handstand twerk in the full-on floor length window in Chinatown. UN- MISSABLE. Make the right choice my friends. Come see us off. :) 

I luz ya alll. Can't wait to DANCE. DANCE. DANCE. 


Thursday, July 24, 2014

Notorious Vancouver Interview & "Burlesq" by Michael Fraser (Neighbour Remix)

Heyyyyyy!!! SO I'm in the midst of cray cray costume show preppin' (tonight at Keefer is gonna be a hawwwwwt one!) and I really wanted to share this interview my bestie Tristan Risk did with me for her Notorious Vancouver blog back in April, before the release of "Queen of Sass". She is killin' it, filming the feature Save Yourself in Toronto at the moment and I miss her lots. :)  

 Debuting a brand new hip hop track AND I'mma do the OG gypsy version tonight of "Burlesq" as released by Michael Fraser earlier this year on his Gypsitech EP, for which I guest-vocal'd. 

Here is the Neighbour remix of the track to listen while readinnnnng: 

Huge kisses!! And I have a special surprise early blog for ya next week... vid-styles. :D


Notorious Vancouver: Crystal Precious

It’s been awhile since I posted a Notorious Vancouver interview here. Not because I’m protecting the underground from getting splashed by the mainstream, but more because of a backlog of awesome things occurring and distracting me from bringing the readers of this blog the grease on some of the cool, forward thinking iconoclasts in my beloved home city. So this interview features a dear friend of mine, my gateway drug into the electronic west coast music scene, who literally talked me out of the car and lured me to a outdoor rainforest rave with a bottle of whiskey (true story) and is one talented lady. She is Crystal Precious, strip-hop artists, burlesque icon, 3rd wave feministisa, and sass injector. She is a founding member of our burlesque troupe, Sweet Soul Burlesque, and the weekly femme-cee at the Keefer bar’s Sweet Sip Thursday. With the world waiting for her full length album release since her music for her single ‘Apple Pie’ hit last year, I wanted to give the world some insight into this chimera of a woman…
Queen Of Sass, Read for Bass Coast 2014
Queen Of Sass, Read for Bass Coast 2014
1. You’re originally from Winnipeg. What do you think influenced you as an artist growing up there?
 Well, that’s actually only half-true. Winnipeg I consider my home town, because that’s where my family moved when I was ten. Kinda right as I fell into consciousness, you know? Right before puberty. So that’s where I consider my main upbringing. But ORIGINALLY I’m a BC girl. My two sisters and I were both born in Smithers. My mom was a morning radio personality and drama schoolteacher, and my dad was an environmentalist. That place and time of my life all seems extremely dream-like now, but I think being a little kid heavily immersed in nature – fishing in the Bulkley, hiking Hudson bay, had just as much influence on me as the extremely non-outdoor-sy culture of Winnipeg. My number one influence is everything magic, and nature is magic in its purest form right? Straight-up. So that was my start.
 I think I get my warmth from Winnipeg, cuz you learn to get warm there in all kinds of ways. Winnipeggers are such gracious hosts, and kind, open people I think. Made for the best house parties I’ve ever witnessed or experienced since; those old radiator-heated mahogany moulding houses and tiny wooden hallways held lots of good-times vibes I think. Looking in either direction down the tunnels of giant elm trees in a back lane kind of reminded me of that scene in the Labyrinth, you know, at the beginning where she sees the same thing infinitely left and right, and the little worm tells her to look more closely. Then she finds she’s actually standing right in front of an opening. Winnipeg was really like that. You had to hunt, look closely and really learn to look at things differently to find all the juicy scenes there. Keep your ear glued to the ground, your eyes open for clues. Also I think I was just really trained to be more open to the beauty in a city manages to keep a thriving art scene in a challenging economical climate, and, um, just a challenging climate, and not much really, to work with. I really grew up respecting and appreciate the less “refined” places where art still lives, and where it really needs to live, I think. The warehouses. The roller-rinks. The pool halls. The community centres (like for Festival de Voyageur, or the West End, for example). Even the mall, for eff’s sake — that’s where Prairie Theatre Exchange was, in Portage Place, where I was in the Young Company for several years. All of that had a profound effect on me, I think, as far as community building and promoting. And it had a lot to do my path as a low-brow artist with high-brow ideas. :)
 2. You’ve worked very hard along with a number of other souls to help promote the Bass Coast Music Festival. What are some of your observations on the growth of the West Coast underground/electronica/burlesque scene and the elements that tie them together?
 Well to me Bass Coast is a crucial because to me it represents a platform and a space for the more subversive corners of West Coast electronic / conscious arts communities to keep growing. If you go back a bit, I think we’ve all been in tandem for awhile (in terms of the burlesque revival and the electronic music community) in the sense that we were kind of a newer generation of our respective movements. We were discovering and coming up with all these modern takes on them. Like when I first met Max [Ulis] and some of the other Lighta! crew peepz in 2006, they were kinda doing what we had been doing — shows in basements and community centres or warehouses, basically anywhere that would let us do our thing, cuz you know, at the time, dubstep (or what used to be called dubstep) was VERY fresh and kinda weird. A lot of time, both our kinds of events were still generally scrutinized by the folks over at C of V. “Rave” was still a really bad word after all the city crack downs, and “burlesque” was still heavily stigmatized and misunderstood. Nightclubs were certainly still way out of the question at that point, as far as getting in to have decent nights or spots, and honestly the crowds the nightclubs attracted at the time weren’t really a good fit anyway. What we really needed were more spaces where we could do our thing and at the same time foster good, safe vibes around the shows.
 When we [Sweet Soul] built Dollhouse, basically out of a retail storage warehouse, we largely based the business model off of Open Studios, where New Forms was starting to throw all the crazy dubforms parties and introducing all these new kinds of bass music. So we were still kind of mirroring each other as far as creating spaces where we could attract like-minded people and do our new weirdo thing; with us that meant doing neo-burlesque cabarets and over-the-top costume parties. Sweet Soul always had DJS at our late night events and crossed over a bit that way, so it wasn’t long before deeper pockets of the electronic scene started appearing at our door and asking to do events. We were super open to, so long as long as it jived with our wild burlesque grrl vibes and we were into the music, which we were. So suddenly all these crews start coming up and connecting with each other through the spaces, like SHAHdjs and Perception, and Moo Crew and the Joyscouts and the GhettoFunk guys, and Integrated Grime Unit, and LWSD, and the HomeBreakin’ dudes when some of them starting moving here from Calgary.

Me sittin' pon Michael Red's old system at Dollhouse, circa 2009. Mural painted by Phresha

At some point all our shit had started to catch on, and we grew into ourselves... like, fast forward a bit and the Lighta guys were hosting headliners like Skream at Richards on Richards, the Burlesque Fest was about to move to the Vogue, and meanwhile, huge electronic festivals like Shambhala were starting to sell out for the first time ever. By the time Dollhouse finally got shut down in 2010 the community had grown so much and the cross-over was so fluid that everyone needed a new direction, I think. That was the year that I first approached Andrea and Liz (and Andrea H at the time) about promoting for BassCoast. We had done a few events together at that point, and Sweet Soul had also performed at their first installment. I was pretty confident in my observation that what they were doing was essentially giving our community (along with other branches of the coast) a new space to evolve, strengthen and reach out. Didn’t hurt either that they are badass chicks with really similar politics and ethics around lots of shit I’m pretty particular about. I strongly intuited that their platform was the best place to direct any promotional pull I might still have had that came out of the Dollhouse community at that time. So that’s what I did. :) And I’m still doing it.
 Bass Coast just aligns with everything Sweet Soul is about: the neo-shit, the future-vibes, edgier, more subversive corners while still paying homage to the root of our respective art forms. And the burlesque vibe of smart, sassy, artistic, powerful, sexually-liberated women is everywhere. There’s a reason they call it Babecoast. I mean, their logo is a hot babe riding a unicorn with a chainsaw!!! PUHLAYYYSE. And the biggest thing is that it FEELS SAFE for us to be who we are; to just enjoy ourselves in all our crazy glory and to be accepted, not judged or harassed or shamed or antagonized. The opposite, even. Last year, for example, seeing the dance-hall booty-liberation workshop to Tank Grrl & Mandai Djing was one of my favourite moments ever. Like, OF LIFE, though. :)
 3. Performing as a burlesque and strip hop artist, you’ve experienced criticism from other women about being ‘degraded’ and ‘exploited’ in your choices of art forms. How do you deal with these attacks, and what is your advice to other female artists who experience this?
 I think the first thing I do is remember to admit that the skepticism is totally understandable and that usually its just misplaced. Pop-culture is rife with totally annoying exploitative and degrading sexual imagery, especially in the music industry, so it’s not really the biggest surprise ever that I get some eye-rolls when I jump onstage and start taking my clothes off. Like, haven’t we had enough naked women in hiphop? I get it. And then we have the industry insulting us even more by throwing around buzzwords like “empowerment” by featuring female hip-hop singers being “sexy” in a way that either seems super contrived, or consistent with irritating, transparently capitalist agendas. And lot of times they are still clearly deliberately conforming to supernatural beauty ideals and behaviour that is obviously contingent to male-validation. Yeah. You know what? I get it. That shit pisses me off too. I actually feel like the work I’m doing is coming at it from the completely opposite direction, so that kind of misplaced anger doesn’t bother me. Once people actually see me or my troupe do our thing, they usually get it.
 Also, I try to remember that not everyone is as sexually-charged as I am. Stripping and sex for me is not a put-on. It’s just me. My intensely sexual nature is an immense source of creative power for me, and its not something I even try to hide, or cover up. I just can’t even. I mean, the first time I took my top off, I was literally, like, YUP!! It makes sense why women who are perhaps less into sex would be wary of my choice to do burlesque striptease as part of my work, especially when so many women in the entertainment industry are unnecessarily painted in sex and then glorified to sell products. I think a LOT of women probably feel "pushed" to be more sexual than they actually are because of that.  So I get that too. They just have to remember that everyone is different. Some of us are super sexual, some of us are less so. Both are totally equally fine, and just because they wouldn’t do what I’m doing doesn’t mean it’s not genuine or self-directed. As such, it’s not at all degrading for me. It’s really liberating because its a big part of who I am, and a big part of what my gut tells me I'm here for [spiritually speaking].
 Another thing I try to explain, in that same vein, is that the sexual aspect of my work isn’t about TRYING to appeal to men, or to anyone, really. I’m not saying that I don’t enjoy feeling attractive to men in certain contexts, especially those I’m also attracted to, obviously. I do. I’m at least 67 percent hetero I’d say, give or take depending on the moment. :) But putting on an act to TRY to appeal to “men” in general — which, c’maan, how can we generalize like that? Let’s give men some more credit please — or to anyone really, is not my main motivation in life or in my work.
 Furthermore, and perhaps more importantly, I’m not trying to sell you, or anyone, on what I’m doing or saying. When I’m promoting a piece of work, I see it as trying to get it out there to as many people as possible so that it can reach the ones it can be of assistance to. Same as when I promote an event, or a show. I’m not trying to sell people on what I’m doing or tell them they should like me or agree with me. If it resonates with you on some level, awesome. Here’s my record! Have it. (And my choice is to offer it for whatever you can pay, or for free even). If not? No problem — I respect you; to each their own, move along. But I’m coming from a genuine place. I’m not “using” my sexuality to sell you something. I don’t NEED to sell you anything. There are no giant corporations using me to make money. I’m not angling for supreme super stardom, or millions of dollars. I mean, I’m still gonna be open to pretty much anything that comes my way, because I trust that there’s a reason behind it. But by the same token, I’m currently happy as fuck. I love doing my shows, traveling, having a great time with my friends, singing on the beach or in the forest and just creating awesome shit. That’s more than enough for me. So take it — or leave it, if you like. All love. :)
 4. What is your favourite places to make out in Vancouver?
 Hmmm.. I’d have to say the sea wall at twilight, or late night, facing the city. Like Granville island side, near False Creek. The little boardwalks and shadowy trees have all kinds of secret pockets. When the city is all lit up golden glass and you can hear the waves cuz you’re kissing… hot. Sometimes there are pianos there, like randomly people roll out grand-high pianos and play right at shoreside. I’m about as into romance as I am into sex, and that’s a lot. SO yeah. :)
  5. How did you meet your producer, Self Evident, and start collaborating with him to birth awesome song-babies?

Through Dollhouse of course! I actually met his older siblings first, Chloe back when I was a year-fresh burlesque grrl and then Max when he started throwing parties at the space. I’d known Ben for awhile before we started collaborating and always loved what he was doing, sound-wise. Had such a sensibility and a style, pushing ever so slightly into the more challenging stuff while still keeping everyone in. We just got each other, I think, on a personal level, as well. Around 2010 I think, he had sent my roommate at the time, Shamik, a bunch of instrumentals. At that point I was really just dabbling in rapping and singing again.. I hadn’t done much of it since leaving Winnipeg [where I had a band]. But I was starting to be open more and more to the idea of incorporating it into my burlesque acts, largely due to encouragement from the grrlz. Shamik had heard a few of the things I had been foolin’ around with and was also super encouraging, which I’m eternally grateful for. Considering that he had some pretty serious music chops, I was like, oh hey. Maybe this could work. He was like, “here, check out some of these tracks” and what would later turn into Apple Pie was one of them. When I rapped it to Ben for the first time, he was like, “Uhhhh.. wha??!!” Then he uncovered all these pop tunes he’d been secretly writing and storing up. The rest just flowed pretty seamlessly. Can’t express how grateful I am for him.. this record was his first time mixing and mastering with vocal tracks as well. I’m pretty pleased with how it turned out, considering it’s my first record ever and his first pop-music production project.

 6. What are some things to watch out for from Crystal Precious in the coming year?
 Welllllll we’re going to launch our KickStarter in the fall to fundraise for our next video with Apple Pie director Stuart MacKay Smith, which is AWESOME & super exciting. I love working with Stuart, he’s like my other creative soulmate. Doing the Apple Pie vid was literally one of the best days of my life, and there’s just a thick magic around my relationship with him. I’ll never forget the day we discovered that he actually got to meet of my greatest burlesque inspirations, Tura Santana. He just gets us, and what I’m all about. Plus he’s just the raddest, coolest, most talented dude EVERRR. I adore him. The next video is going to be shot outside, with more of the different Vancouver troupes and a grittier aesthetic. We’re taking a lot of inspiration from the 1979 film “The Warriors”. It’s gonna be hilariously bad-ass.
 I’ve also a single with three remixes slotted for release along with that video; am also deep into a bunch of new tracks with Ben that I’ll be performing at The Keefer Bar on Thursdays all summer with Sweet Soul. The grrlz & I are putting a ton of love into our Bass Coast show and our touring show, which I’m really pumped about getting on the road for some longer stints, most likely starting January of next year. Would also love to plant seeds for video collabs with some other folks I admire as well (*cough *cough Soska Twins) and I’m hoping that now we have a more solid frame of work to build from we can find someone to help us get into the grant game. So you know. One or two things. Aside from that? I need beach days, and family, and lovers, and swimming, and dancing, and playing dress-up just for the hell of it. Maybe with a raccoon. Know any? :)

(our nickname for Tris is based on her spirit animal - the raccoon!)
huge love everybody!! see you in the next week's vid! xoxo CP

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Crystal Precious Vlog 01 - Self-Sass Injections

YUPPPPP... After almost 10 years of posts in the written word on my blog, I'm breakin' out into the DIY vid blog world!!! The editing is kinda brutes at the mo, but I know I'll get better at it. Gotta go through that time before you get good at something, right? Yah. Important thing is to get started. :) These are my actual practices, particularly the psychological ones... still keep these all in effect on a daily.


Benzonite Clay - Ummmmm, its actually Bentonite. Rrrrrright. Whupps. :) Anyway here are the deets.
Chia Seeds are MADE OF UNICORN MEAT Learn it.
Kimmy Karolyn is my awesome in-home hairstylist, PM her if ya live in Vancouver and enjoy quality

COME SEE ME TONIGHT and every Thursday if you're around, I'm performing and hosting at The Keefer Bar, as always!!!

All show detes & times are here: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Sweet-Sip-Thursdays-Sweet-Soul-Burlesque-at-The-Keefer/103755619694195

Here's the info for the BASSCOAST, the AMAZING festival l I keep talking about: https://www.basscoast.ca 

I literally cannot wait. We've been working our ASSES off at Sweet Soul for our giant show on Saturday night at 10pm... wooooooooooot!!! 

huge love errrrbody. kisses n' kix, 

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Throwin' That Shade - Sex, Honesty & Vulnerability

Photo: Tiffany Ireland Photography / MUA: Teresa Bussey of Dead Heaven

Yeow peoples!! Offering up a free download of "Throwin' That Shade" on Soundcloud today to encourage high-sass levels. This song will be sung live and performed to by Lola Frost and a bevy of hot ass dancers at this year's Bass Coast project on Saturday night at 10 PM on Mainstage. 

Some symbiotic Russell Brand / Brené Brown influences poppin up all over my scribblin's n' clickity-clacks this week. (My everpresent bracket-abuse, however, makes me feel like i could use a punctuation proofreader or who knows my speaking pattern. Must LEARNZ... LEARNNNNNNNZ!!! If that person is you, drop me a note. End bracket).

Russell Brand you may have heard of; he's the politically charged English comic / recovered addict whom I personally find to be one of the best and most engaging writers on the planet. I HIGHLY recommend his books and blogs if you are interested in getting to know some work that is completely irreverent in all the best ways, and totally non-judgemental of himself, which I think is possibly the best quality of a human being to have, cuz then you can use that honestly to move forward. Love that dude. Funny as fuck, too.

Brené Brown is a researcher and writer on the topics of vulnerability and shame, two themes that appear again and again for me in various forms in my life. Her basic findings after studying human behaviour patterns for years and years and years is that being able to step into a place of vulnerability is key for human happiness; its also the crux of creative power. A sliver of her work:

On the tip of vulnerability, and Throwin' That Shade: I'm kinda “over” some recent posts and discussions I'm hearing from people still acting all surprised that sex in the party or festival context can still breed feelings, attachment or unintended aftermath. “But why can't they just be cool?' etc etc, not the least of whom are DJs, musicians and, yes, quite a few burlesque performers when they have dipped into the fan-dom pool, for example. When friends or people in proximity who have hooked up at a festival or after party, but haven't communicated ... weird energy can ensue. We all know this. I have some thoughts. :)  

For me it all comes down to this: last time I checked, the age of sexual liberation does not mean the end of responsibility. THIS STILL APPLIES in a party-type setting, I think. I love having sex, and I don't always have to be in the context of a definitive relationship or dating scenario to engage, but I'm also like, a totally a sensitive person (ohhh c'maaaaaan, don't act all surprised).  Everybody is trying to be all "cool"and "casual" all the time, but I'm over it. What's wrong with admitting that people have feelings? What's wrong with asking "what happened there?" if you need to? I think its important to remember that EVEN if it might seem implausible or distorted, getting involved physically can unlock certain things when prodded with, ahem, keys... even if neither person intended for that to happen. I mean, it could also just unlock a thunderous “noooo” or “whoops” ... obviously there are a thousand scenarios, but the point is that no one knows what's going to happen. Its a risk that is taken I think, and a risk that in my opinion deems a bit of follow-up sometimes, especially if everyone is in close proximity for the weekend and you are "feeling" that person giving the eye. :)

This is where the vulnerability thing comes in: I literally sometimes feel like people would rather run themselves over with a stampede of angry, obnoxiously painted monster-trucks than to directly admit how they feel. Especially if they're interested in exploring things further and are unsure if its mutual, but almost MORE if they realize they are no longer really interested. BUT you know what? Our feelings are our feelings. We don't have to feel guilty about them. If I find the person I've fooled around with is still trying to engage on a level I'm not feeling, that's MY cue for a DIRECT, CLEAR, RESPECTFUL and VERBAL conversation about where I'm at, gently, clearly, in all honesty, and as soon as possible. Doesn't need to be dramatic. In fact, ninety-nine percent of the time I feel like I'll seriously AVOID any dramatic or awkward energy by having this simple conversation, and as far as I'm concerned, no one has any grounds to complain or wonder “why they can't just be cool”  if they haven't done that. And I don't mean, for the love of eye-rolls, “communicating” disinterest by ignoring them, posting weird vague-book stuff, avoiding them or behaving not very nicely so he/she'll “get the hint” and leave me alone. That doesn't count, like, at all. THAT is the shit that breeds drama I feel. I know its hard, but accessing compassion, and making intentions, or lack there-of, known and on the table so that person can make a dignified decision about what to do next... that's respect I feel. I feel like if I can let them touch all my fun bits, I can pay them the respect of doing that... even if it's not the most fun conversation ever. THAT'S what I mean by responsibility. Ummmkayyyyyyy. :)

On the flipside, I think its equally important to TELL THE TRUTH if feelings come up for me with someone. I haven't always done this. I admit it. I don't know, maybe something about the nineties I think got me all psyched on the idea that it was cool as a liberated woman to have sex and feel emotionally detached about it. THANKS A LOT SHIRLEY MANSON!!! Hahah. What was up with that?  I mean, yes, it is irritating to have any form of gender stereotypes about how women behave when it comes to sex, and I do enjoy slashing those stereo-types with a giant razor of awesomeness in many other levels in my work and my life. For example, I do strongly feel that the sex should be way less taboo, less commodified, more enjoyed and more incorporated as a natural, important, healthy and fun part of life. But I have to remind myself that to me, true liberation is the ability to be authentic, and the ability to live in our authenticity. I'm a burlesque-strip-teasing rapper who loves to write, read & rave; and guess what: having sex isn't really that casual for me. Shit comes up, lots of times unexpected, and I have to force myself to admit that when it happens, and if necessary, back away from situations where my feelings aren't matched. Because --- learn it from me --- you can't win someone's heart with your fun bits. No matter how fun they are. It's just not possible. Trust. Ya know? Yuuuusssh. Judgement free. 

Speaking of not judging, you know what else can happen sometimes when you have a bunch of sex at festivals? BABIES. Just sayin'. :) In um, a totally unrelated point (cough cough ahem) tonight we have both our Sweet Soul moms on deck at The Keefer Bar, 9pm, 135 Keefer!!  Cara Milk's babe is over a year , and Cherry's is 3 months... amazing. Here they are rockin' their gangster mom signs:

Raccoon Tristan Risk will be joining us. Details here: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Sweet-Sip-Thursdays-Sweet-Soul-Burlesque-at-The-Keefer/103755619694195

I'll also be at Wiggle 20 this year!! Wooot!!! Friday as part of FUSE at the Vancouver Art Gallery & Saturday at the Fox cabaret. If you enjoy FABULOUS drag queens and jaw-dropping eleganza fantasy hair-show fashion ish, this is for you hunty: https://www.facebook.com/events/1478954768988279/

Be sassilicious to each other. :)
'Til next week!!!!!