While the gay community often focuses on homophobia in mainstream hip-hop, many of us don't know there is a whole scene of out LGBT rappers who are ripping mics all over the country. From the East & West Coasts, from the Midwest to the Dirty South, queer hip-hop artists are building local, national and international fanbases. Tori Fixx, a black gay MC, DJ, and composer (he's written the music scores to The Ski Trip and How Do I Look?), sat down with AfterElton via email to talk about his music, gay hip-hop, and the upcoming HomoRevolution Tour, which kicks off next week in the southwest.
After Elton: So tell our readers about the HomoRevolution Tour. How did it come about?
Tori Fixx:Well I was first made aware of the tour and invited by Deadlee and his manager. I know Deadlee wanted to have a sponsored, major tour that consisted of a bunch of LGBT hip-hop artists, both newcomers and old, that toured the US and of course I couldn't say, "no."
AE: You have a new disc, Code Red. Tell AfterElton readers about the CD, and what they can expect to hear.
TF: Code Red is my 6th CD release and marks my 10th year of being an openly gay, hip-hop recording artist. This is my most universal record to date, meaning that I still talk about "hot boys" and "LGBT issues," but I do it in a way so "anyone" can hear the songs and hopefully relate to them in their own way. If anyone is experiencing Tori Fixx for the first time then Code Red would be the record to start with. This is me now. Funky, humorous, political, romantic and all.
AE: Do you think that gay hip-hop artists will ever be accepted by mainstream audiences?
TF: LGBT hip-hop artists still haven't been fully accepted, acknowledged or embraced by LGBT audiences yet so I'm not sure about anyone else. Still I think both audiences can be reached and a LGBT artist can and will be accepted by both audiences it's just a matter of having the right artists, with the right product at the right time with the right backing (record label, investor, etc…). I honestly believe that people like Madonna/Maverick Records, David Geffen, and Silver Label/Tommy Boy can make any LGBT hip-hop artist a crossover star at the snap of a finger.
AE: There have been some death threats from the straight hip-hop community. What have people been saying? How do you deal with that?
TF: I haven't personally received any but I have seen them and I know whom they were directed to, and it's sad. The way I respond is to "write, arrange, record, produce and engineer songs like Code Red and make sure that any and every song that I create is just as good if not better than most of those straight artists that are being "defended" or their death threat making fans.
AE: There has been a lot of controversy about the use of the "n" word and the "f" word of late. There are gay hip-hop artists that make use of both. How do you feel about the use of these words?
I feel that they are both words that are mostly known for their affiliation with hatred and they should just not be used altogether. A gay man using the "f" word in front of straight folks but telling them not to use it is pointless to me (the same with the black community). I'm guilty of using both words a lot in the past hiding behind the excuse of, "I wanted to take the negative power from those words" and I've come to realize that-that was total bull****. It doesn't make those words powerless, it merely keeps them in circulation amongst the human race along with the negativity attached to them so I avoid using them now. There's really no purpose for them, in my eyes.
To find out about the HomoRevolution 2007 tour dates, visit www.homorevolution.com.