Big Freedia hailing from New Orleans, LA graced Bumbershoot with his presence Saturday afternoon and effectively tore the mutha down. Freedia’s infectious, fast paced music captivated the crowd. Freedia is one of the few artists I know of the New Orleans hip-hop genre called Bounce music. It was impossible not to dance when Big Freedia took the stage, especially because Freddia himself was twerking up a storm along side two very beautiful and talented booty shakin’ ladies.
Twerking is a hot button issue now. Who can twerk, who can’t twerk, when is it appropriate to twerk, twerking as cultural appropriation, twerking as derogation towards women twerking is fascinating and confusing. It’s hard to understand what’s right and what’s wrong when it comes to twerking, especially if you come from outside of the culture that created the dance and the music to go along with it. But when Big Freedia took the stage, booming voice over blaring beats, and started to twerk alongside his dancers it seemed like the absolute perfect context to appreciate the art form of twerking. Twerking was made for Bounce music (or vise versa).
I truly appreciated everything that was happening in that moment and I felt enlightened by Big Freedia. I felt like in that moment I understood twerking because I was compelled to twerk. I of course didn’t because that would have been physically impossible but I sure as hell wanted to. Twerking in the context of Big Freedia’s show and in the Bounce music context is a physical manifestation of the music. It’s close to impossible to hear that music, appreciate that music fully, without wanting to or trying to give a little shake and jiggle. With admiration and appreciation for the art form, the music, the dance and the people, I believe twerking can happen and can be respectful. Big Freedia is an inspiration — a gay man in hip-hop is hard to find — and a man willing to twerk along side his dancers is even more matchless. Big Freedia’s music is worth a listen and if you ever get the opportunity to see him live, don’t miss it.
Megan Castillo / Indian Princess, Filipina Goddess / KSUB Reporter
(Editor’s Note: Hey, this is Bella, the person who edits and posts all these killer articles. Big Freedia is coming to Seattle this Friday, October 17t! Neumos. 8pm. $15 advance. 21+. Check out his song “Y’all Get Back Now” – it is truly some booty poppin’ stuff. Peace.)