A kiki with Jordan Allen
It's that time again—time to get untucked and behind the gaff/binding of another legendary performer.
This month we had a great kiki with former Mr. USofA Jordan Allen! He has been a big dog on the Nashville scene for years, gathering a huge following and even larger drag family! He is a no B.S. kind of guy and takes his art just as seriously as the next King or Queen. Few know much about his personal life unless they know him in his everyday life, which is why I wanted to kiki with him and see what ‘T’ he could spill for our readers. This is one untucked you don't want to miss, so sit back and unbind with this drag king edition of Nashville Untucked!
What were some hardships you faced growing up?
You got all day? I have experienced all types of abuse—abandonment, rape, bullying, mental illness in my family. I have been disowned by most of my family. I have faced a lot of hardships in life, but it made me who I am today, and I am stronger for it.
How would you explain being transgender to someone who may not understand it?
Sexuality is who you are attracted to. Gender Identity is what you identify as. I just explain that being trans is not a choice. Living in a body that does not match your insides is like being in prison, and transitioning is getting a pardon from a life sentence. And I ask them to imagine having the body of the opposite gender they identify with and how that would make them feel.
Do you find yourself more attracted to men, women, or both, and why?
I am attracted to women, although after transitioning I am more open to understanding that love comes in the form of a human and gender is not as important.
What is the biggest misconception about being transgender?
That it somehow makes us less of a man if we are a transman, or less of a woman if you are a trans woman. We are viewed as lesser than cis men and woman, even in the LGBTQ community.
What do you think has been the hardest part of transitioning?
I would say not having insurance that covers the medical attention that a trans person needs is the hardest part. So having to cover it all out of pocket has been a struggle. I definitely think that our insurance in this country needs to really be addressed for the trans community.
You had top surgery awhile back: do you feel as thou it has made you more complete? Why?
Absolutely! It changed so much about my life. It was like that is what I needed for me to feel whole and for the world around me to accept me as the man I am. To feel rain on my skin, to swim with no shirt, to just feel okay with the body looking back at me in the mirror. It made me so much happier after surgery. I felt like I was finally normal.
What advice who you give to someone who feels they may be transgender?
Research, research, and more research! There is a ton of info available these days. So go research and talk to trans people. These are permanent changes, so you have to be sure before starting any treatment to transition.
What do you feel was the hardest part of coming to terms with being transgender?
Worrying about how the people I loved and cared would take it… Some were supportive, and some decided they did not want me in their life anymore.
How do you feel that the Nashville community feels about transgender individuals? How does that make you feel?
I feel some people are amazing. But as a whole we have a long way to go. I see such disrespect and belittling happen to trans people all the time, treating them like they are not men or women, like they are less than somehow… Saying hurtful things about them… Using the wrong pronouns and acting like it is no big deal… I think that education about trans people in our own community would be helpful. We cannot want equality yet treat our own community the way some do.
Is there ever any shade between trans kings and your everyday drag king? If so why do you think that is?
Yes, because some feel it is not as hard for us to give the illusion since we transitioned. But I disagree. We have challenges as trans kings that are the same as theirs and some new challenges as well.
What would you say makes a king a good entertainer?
You have to have a desire to learn and grow all the time. Listen to those around you, take advice and critical criticism and to pass on the knowledge you have learned to others.
What in your opinion is the biggest mistake drag kings today make as performers?
I would say not costuming and taking time to learn how important makeup is. That or they become cocky and big headed but again that is any entertainer's mistake to be that way.
So you are a former Mr.USofA: any other national crowns you have your sights set on?
I have a few.... You will just have to stay tuned to find out!
What advice would you give to the kings out there that want to win a national title?
Compete! You will grow so much more by competing and putting yourself out there. And remember what you do off stage is just as important as on stage. People are always watching, so be a professional and stay humble!
What is the hardest part of pageant preparation? Why?
The money! Pageants are expensive as heck. I spent ten grand on my quest for my national title. It is the hardest part for sure.
What are some big things we can look forward to seeing from you this year?
I am emceeing a lot of events coming up. I am emceeing some pageants, as well as the LGBT ball. I will be hosting USofA Nationals for Diva, Classic and Male Illusion. And I might have a few other things up my sleeve… Shhh!
Where can our readers keep up with you?
My Facebook and my Instagram. You can also catch me on ladies’ night every Thursday at PLAY!
Photo: Trysh Gauvin, KK Photography