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It time to get untucked! This month should be a good read as I had a kiki with none other than Ivy St. James! So you know I asked her to pill the T about her and Vanity. We have grown to know and love this little lady for some time now, so why not get to know her better? She is a great performer and an even better friend to many. She loves her fans and loves her drag, so sit back and hold on to your wigs, cuz it’s about to get serious!
When did you first decide to do drag?
Early 2012, I was at Club Mai for their first ever LGBT night. My college friends and I knew the guy in charge of the events, so we went to support. At that point in life if there was a good dance floor I was there. I did a few guest light shows. So from that moment ‘til April of that year, I practiced, and went and did Open Stage at Forbidden in Cookeville and the rest is history!
What or who sparked your interests in drag?
In all honesty, Randall Jackson (my drag mom Ryeleigh St. James) was the first drag queen I got to know on a personal level. So after that night at Mai, I contacted him, and he agreed to help out. He helped plant the seed... Having a degree in theatre, drag just pulled me in. The art of portraying a character, a character you got to be the playwright of, and placing it on stage to show the world and be a voice for those finding theirs is what hooked me and why I continue to do what I do.
How would you describe your style and persona?
Ever changing. Ivy started as a reflection of who I wanted Josh to be as a person. Someone who didn't let others opinions get to him, someone who felt confident and attractive, someone who could stand their ground. A person who could also stand up for others that needed a hand, a smile, and someone on their side. Those things haven't changed, but the look of my persona has elevated. I used to be more of this tumbling rave queen that only did the techno songs no one knew. Now I'm a cosplaying mermaid who still likes to do songs that no one knows!
What is the hardest part of being a drag performer?
Not letting the crowd affect you. If the crowd doesn't enjoy what you put your heart and soul into, it's defeating, if you let it be, or if people want to do nothing but praise you, it can do the opposite. Sometimes it's all about the interest of the crowd or the energy they give off. I enjoy what songs I do, but if the crowd's energy isn't there, it can affect my performance, and if they are living, it can enhance it. The things we can't control can be the hardest to overcome.
Who is the biggest influence to you that is a drag performer and why?
Everyone influences me in different ways, but I would have to say when it comes to the last year my fellow Glam Squad members Tyrah Hunter and Vanity. These are the two girls I work with closest, and they share the same drive I have to be better while creating the greatest show we can. They are entirely different drag entertainers, and I love them both for it. Tyrah and Vanity always try to bring a new things to the table each show, and the looks they bring help me to always want to look my best. Both have taught me so much and helped open my mind to the new ways to achieve greatness.
Everyone knows you are in a relationship with a fellow performer: do you ever feel over shadowed by her?
I don't now, I see us as equals, because we are two different types of entertainers with two different careers. When we met, we weren't anywhere near as beautiful as we are today. We both had a lot to learn when it came to drag, but me more so than him because has wanted this as his career since he was younger. So he had worked a little more at it than I at the time. So for the first two years of our relationship, of course, he always looked better than me, but it didn't mean our performances were less than one another, so I never felt overshadowed. It was more of a drive, it pushed me to learn more and be better. If he was gonna have this as a career, I knew I had to look good on his arm.
Do you girls every fight over clothes, hair, shoes or anything like that?
Not really fight, more like pick on each other. Every time I make new wigs for myself, he loves to be like, "Thank you for my new hair girrrrlll!" But that's him paying me a compliment while really wanting to wear it. We ask each other for pieces to help enhance our looks from time to time or make suggestions of something we have that could help. What we try to do though is be respectful enough in two ways. One, we ask to wear something of the other’s versus expecting to be able to; and two, each of us wears it in a different way than the other. For example, we found this amazing dress at a thrift store, and we both wear it randomly: I wear it with the low cut in the front, and he wears it the proper way with the deep cut in the back. That's how we treat our castmates, though, so it’s really not even being in a relationship, it's more about helping a fellow queen go out there and be sickening.
Who is your favorite drag performer, living or deceased?
Raven. She always looks so put together from head to toe—painting for the back row—and everything has purpose. The best is the energy she gives: her performance onstage is mesmerizing. I had the honor of being with her backstage when she came to Nashville and she was so humble and so willing to give advice, yet so playful and humble.
Out of the queens in Nashville which one do you think give us the most iconic looks?
Nashville is full of such great talent, with so many queens that give different looks that could just be as iconic as the one before. So this will be based more off of what I enjoy doing on stage, and I would have to choose the Princess and Aurora Sexton. Both impersonate iconic celebrities and movie/TV characters. They put a lot of attention to detail in their characters, from hair lines and shoe styles to doing a complete make up change during a show.
Ivy performs at Play Dance Bar on Sundays as a member of the Glam Squad, as well as in the 9:30 Monday Night show at Tribe. You can follow this queen on Facebook as Ivy St. James and Instagram as @jivy85!
For those with a thirst to celebrate, Red Bull Unlocked is the key. In city after city, the most exciting bars, clubs, mixologists, performing artists, and more take over a local landmark building to showcase their signature ambiance while also collaborating for a must-see mashup. And now it's Music City’s turn to seize the spotlight, as the event brings 10 bars together in East Nashville’s Five Points neighborhood.
Fueled by the best of Nashville’s thriving music scene, Red Bull Unlocked has curated an eclectic night of show-stopping entertainment performances including a pop-up Whiskey Jam show, DJ sets, musicians, and more. The full lineup is here:
- Whiskey Jam (feat. Dozzi, Willie Shaw, and Johnny Hayes)
- A.B. Eastwood
- Daisha / Rap Girl
- Boom Bap (DJ Collective feat. DJ-Rate, Case Bloom)
- Whiskey Disco (DJ Collective feat. Coach, Jim O'Shea)
- Old Crow Medicine Show’s Jerry Pentercost (DJ Set)
- DJ Stretch
- DJ Griffin Green
- The Play Mates (Drag Show feat. Sasha, Vanity, Deception, Aura Mayari, Corlis Todd, and Carmin Triple C)
Counting down to the epic celebration, Daisha shares, “I never thought I’d have the opportunity to perform in so many of Nashville’s top spots all in the same night. Fans can expect a lot of bops and high energy. I want people to dance and have a good time.”
Ward Guenther, Whiskey Jam Founder, adds, “Red Bull has been enjoyed at Whiskey Jam since the very first night, so it's only fitting Whiskey Jam is enjoyed at Nashville's first Red Bull Unlocked. Looking forward to this!”
Red Bull Unlocked Istanbul
Photo courtesy of Red Bull
Local favorites including Pearl Diver, Tin Roof, Lipstick Lounge, White Limozeen, and more will join forces for one epic night. Full list of bars and partners below:
- The Dive Motel
- Lipstick Lounge
- Pearl Diver
- Play Dance Bar
- Rosemary & Beauty Queen
- The Stage
- Tin Roof
- Whiskey Jam
- White Limozeen
- Woolworth Theatre – Opening Fall 2022!
- Eleven Eleven - Opening 2023!
Date: August 21, 2022
Time: 6 PM – 11PM CT
Location: 1102 Forrest Ave, Nashville, TN 37206
Entrance: Ticked event
Rumble Boxing, the boxing-inspired group fitness studio, opened its doors for the first time in Nashville on June 20 at 609 Overton St, Nashville, TN. The hottest workout on the block is hosting its official grand opening from August 4th-7th with daily classes, membership specials, and prizes from local vendors. The new Rumble Boxing studio is currently offering a buy one class, get one free promotion for the Nashville community.
Rumble Boxing delivers 45-minute, 10-round, strength and conditioning group workouts, crafted around teardrop-style aqua boxing bags and high-intensity strength training circuits. This brings all fitness levels together to experience what Rumble is known for: combining the sweet science of boxing with high energy and positive vibes.
Rumble Boxing Fitness Studio
Photo courtesy of Rumble Boxing Gulch Nashville
This boutique fitness brand offers serious benefits like increased stamina and strength, with cardio that’s actually fun. The seasoned trainers at the new studio are thrilled to serve their local community while offering this fun, new modern approach to boxing and welcome members of all fitness levels to the Rumble family.
The new Rumble Boxing studio is owned and operated by Blake Baskin and Antonio Compton. With their background in the fitness industry, this dynamic duo is excited to bring their passion for boxing and group fitness to Nashville. As business and life partners, Blake and Antonio aim to create a strong community within their new Rumble Boxing studio and share their message of non-apologetic inclusivity.
Black and Gay-Owned Business
Rumble Boxing Store with Dolly Parton Mural
Photo courtesy of Rumble Boxing Gulch Nashville
“We own who we are, and this brand aligns with that perfectly,” said Antonio. “This is what we want to create and bring to this community: a fitness class that is designed for anyone and a place for people to be who they are. As a Black and gay-owned business, we want to help lower the division we see in the world right now. Our goal is to bring people together through Rumble, set everything aside, and have fun.”
To echo their message of acceptance and inclusion, Blake and Antonio commissioned a local Nashville artist to paint an 11 X 6-ft. mural of Nashville icon and philanthropist, Dolly Parton. The massive portrait features the country star in Rumble Boxing gear in the lobby of the studio.
The excitement and buzz around Rumble allowed Blake and Antonio to recruit top-tier trainers to head up the new studio, including Head Trainer Oronde Jones, a well-known celebrity trainer in the Nashville market.
Rumble Boxing Fitness Studio
Photo courtesy of Rumble Boxing Gulch Nashville
“Compared to other fitness classes, Rumble is a class you can truly get lost in for 45 minutes. With the dark room, you don’t have to worry if anyone is paying attention to you. The music is awesome and inspiring, and the beat drops right when you need it the most. Also, with boxing being a sport you can never truly master, you’re always improving and crafting your skill. On the floor, you’re consistently doing something new, which prevents you from ever hitting a plateau.” Said Oronde Jones about his favorite part of Rumble.
Rumble has massive brand loyalty and widespread appeal, partly thanks to attracting top names like Justin Bieber, Selena Gomez, Kendall Jenner, Hailey Baldwin, Jason Derulo, David Beckham, and Kevin Hart to its studios.
About Rumble Boxing
Founded in New York City in 2017, Rumble is a group fitness concept delivering a mix (or combination) of boxing-inspired circuits and the transformative power of resistance training. Pro and amateur fighters glove up together, no matter their fitness level or skill, to reveal their inner fighter. The experience is a 45-minute, 10-round, full-body cardio and strength workout crafted around specially designed water-filled, teardrop-style boxing bags. Rumble was founded by Noah Neiman (former Barry’s Bootcamp Master Trainer, and cast member of Bravo’s Work Out New York), Eugene Remm (Co-Founder of Catch Hospitality Group (Catch Restaurants, CATCH STEAK, Lexington Brass), Andy Stenzler (Co-Founder Cosí, Kidville), and Anthony DiMarco (13-time IRONMAN, former Managing Director, Google).
Who would have thought that we would have to get through a pandemic in order to appreciate the small things we have, such as the ability to simply pack our bags and hit the road?
For two years, there’s been nothing left for us travel junkies to do but sit at home and try to find new destinations that we will conquer once we defeat what appears to be the biggest villain of the 21st century. But once that happens, hold your bags tight because we will be up for some of the most interesting travel experiences. Take a look at some ideas for your post-COVID traveling plans:
A Gay Cruise
One of the best options to have in mind when all of this passes is a good, nice and long (pun intended) gay cruise. Or cruise in general, for that matter. Bear in mind, social distancing will still be a thing in the post-COVID world. But COVID-19 likely doesn’t mean that cruises will cease to exist. On the contrary, though cruise ships will probably keep the number of passengers smaller than before, it is believed that they will become an even bigger hit in the following period, especially because they are all going to go a lot more environmentally-friendly. On the bright side, is there any better way of celebrating the end of the pandemic than by cruising around some magnificent seas, stopping by at great cities and having romantic dinner nights at nice restaurants?
A getaway in nature
On the other hand, there is always the option of stepping away from the hustle and bustle of large cities, and spending some time in a place that’s not only healthy, but also beautiful. Some of the destinations that plenty of people will look for are the ones that can cater for both peace of mind and amazing things to see or do. One such destination is New Zealand, one of the greenest countries on Earth right now. Not only will you be visiting the magnificent country that gave us the beautiful Shire from Lord of the Rings; this is also a destination that’s excellent for everyone who prefers relaxing to partying. If you’re up for some partying, you will be able to hit Auckland, while if you’re for something calmer, there’s plenty of amazing places that you can see and visit.
Dancing Around at Pride
Pride parades are also events that you want to have in mind for the post-COVID world. Such events have always been quite important, but it seems that they are now more important than ever. The virus has canceled more than 75 Pride parades all around the world, which is one of the reasons why we must support the ones that will see the light of day once the pandemic stops. Truth be told, the upcoming Prides will perhaps be the best Prides ever organized. Give the gays a couple of weeks of quarantine, then let them outside and see what kind of party they are able to throw!
A road trip
If you’re, as well, waiting for the day to wake up and say “long gone are the days when we were not allowed to go wherever we wanted?”, and if staying at one place gave you a lot to think about, then your first post-COVID travel experience should definitely be a nice road trip. You can practically choose which country you want to tour, and you can either take your own car (you have probably missed it so much), or rent one at your destination. Australia is an amazing country for this, though, as it offers the possibility of seeing the Great Ocean Road, which is an amazing thing to see and experience. On the other hand, if you do not want or cannot leave your country, you can also choose to go on a domestic road trip – there are amazing things to see in your vicinity as well.
Holiday for a single guy
If you’re single, or you’re traveling someplace with another single friend, then you should definitely organize a nice vacation for yourself or for you and your single friend, and hit one of the best European cities. Europe has been greatly affected by the virus, which means that now it’s time to pay it back and get it back on its feet by traveling there and seeing all the amazing things it offers. Any city you choose in Europe – you will not make a mistake. Apart from being able to see great landmarks, you will also have the chance to have a drink at great gay clubs and pubs, and join unforgettable gay parties. And if the gay scenery is not your forte, worry not, as Europe indeed has to offer so many different and magnificent things.