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Article written by Alexander Rodriguez, host of On the Rocks with Alexander
Actress, singer, and activist Peppermint may have earned the title “Lip Synch Assassin” from her time on RuPaul’s Drag Race Season 9, but she’s tearing up the scene with her own singing voice in her latest single, Best Sex – all about her addiction to fuckboys.
Best Sex is the lead track for Peppermint’s upcoming album, A Girl Like Me: Letters To My Lovers, the first in a trilogy of album releases about the three stages of Peppermint’s most recent relationship. Peppermint reveals all in this next album, a mix of sexy, sultry tunes that includes a cover of Carole King’s classic, “Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow.” Her album, A Girl Like Me, follows in a lineup of Peppermint’s extensive musical career that includes hits and parodies with collaborations with everyone in the biz.
To say Peppermint is a trailblazer is an understatement. She made Drag Race history as the first out, trans contestant (she came out in 2012) and also made Broadway history as the first, out trans woman to originate a principal role for her performance in Head Over Heels. She has appeared on Pose, Saturday Night Live, and America’s Next Top Model.
We sat down for an Andrew Christian exclusive for a chat about our mutual addiction to fuckboys, supporting trans drag queens, Drag Race, and what we would do to Aquaman.
Any behind the scenes dish about your time on Drag Race?
When I was competing, it was very early and they have a whole process that’s basically like being in school - they line you up, they take you into the van, no talking, and they count the heads of the participants. And so one day, early on in the first or second day, they were lining everybody up in the morning, taking us from the hotel and they miscounted and left me behind. I was still in my hotel room and nobody came to get me and I just got abandoned! I was terrified that it was going to ruin my shot to be on the show. So that was some drag race dish for you.
Oh, here's some other drag race dish! RuPaul comes out in these gorgeous gowns, but then during the show, she's wearing basically wearing basketball shorts. She literally puts on like basketball shorts or pants during the shows, she's never wearing that dress.
What sets your drag apart from other performers?
Well, you know, it evolves over time. I'm not really doing much drag these days, but when I do drag, I think what sets my drag apart is that it definitely has some wear and tear on it. She's not the newest person to the block. Most of my drag has very clear and obvious roots to ancient history, lol.
Your upcoming song, Best Sex, is about fuck boys. Why are you so addicted to them?
It's certainly not by choice, but fuck boys end up just ending up in my bed all the time or trying to get into my bed. And there's not a lot I can do about it. The gigolos of the past have nothing on the fuck boys of today. The fuck boys of today are really good at making it seem like they're interested in something more. They really play a game, a sort of a mind game. They're the most clever and the most manipulative. And there's a lot of them, I think it seems like there's more fuck boys than anyone else!
Great hookup story?
I was really over love and trying to find a partner and all that. I had a crush on someone who basically rejected me and that night I was like, I'm getting on that hookup app! So, I got on a hookup app and I was like, this is just going to be a hookup. I don't care anything about you. And after that night, he started exhibiting these traits of amounting to be in a relationship. And I was so confused! I mean, almost instantly, it was just a different type of situation. And he stayed over, we did all this cuddling and talking. It was one of my greatest hookups ever and then it turned into a relationship, then we broke up. This person is what my album is about – my relationship, which started with a hookup when I was just looking for sex. And I got so much more.
What are the biggest sex myths you can debunk about the transgendered community?
It would be that we're not all perpetrators and we're not waiting in the women's bathroom to rape women. You know, I don't think that there's a lot of myths out there about trans people, to be honest with you. People should know that we are who we say we are. And so, I think if you see a hot and sexy trans person, they're probably going to be hot and sexy in the bedroom. If you have any fear, don't let your inexperience with trans people stop you from hooking up getting into an entanglement. By the same token, trans people have so much more to offer than our body parts.
What are your tips for the perfect lip-synch?
I don't want to give away all my secrets, but I will say - pay attention to which vocal is the lead. You have to pay attention to the vocals, not just the words. Which voice is the lead and which voice is the backup? Make sure that you can distinguish between the two.
How have you been surviving COVID quarantine at home?
It's been really interesting and tough. Obviously, I'm very grateful for the frontline workers and I think the city of New York has handled COVID relatively well. So, I'm grateful for that. I usually spend a lot of time at home anyway, so it's not that tough, but losing the work has been difficult. On the upside, it's really given me a great opportunity to connect with my family.
How can the LGBTQ community support trans representation in drag?
I think the LGBTQ community can support trans people, trans representation, and trans people in drag by finding other trans Queens and trans Kings and supporting them and encouraging everyone to get in drag, everyone should try drag. Go to their shows, buy their music, wear their t-shirts just like you would support any other drag artists. And I really do think the best way to support a trans drag artist is just to support that trans person.
Favorite part about performing on Broadway:
My favorite part about performing on Broadway was being able to meet people who resonated with my story and with the character and, hopefully, with my performance. That was great.
Worst onstage mishap:
I’ve had some mishaps. I've done a split and ripped a hamstring, I've gotten injured. But the one mishap that was the most embarrassing, extra thing, is when I was performing and there's the part where the wrong music happened. The music I was supposed to talk through was supposed to be nice, soft, and sweet with violins, and the music that played was like a hard, heavy metal disco. It was quite a shock. That was in front of hundreds of people watching a Broadway show. I tried to make the speech, but then after a while, I was like, yo, I can't do this. This music has gone crazy.
If you were to design a pair of Andrew Christian undies, what would it look like?
I would design a red and white striped pair, of course. We would call them The Candy Stripers.
Challenge you would add to Drag Race:
I would say the challenge would be start in drag and then you’d have to change your drag. It would be about the complete look - like remove your makeup and put on a new makeup face, and remove your outfit, put on a new outfit, everything…and you'd have 10 minutes to do it.
Celebrity you would want as your own personal F*ck Boy:
Jason Mamoa. But I mean, I would want to marry him, but since I can't marry him, I'll take him as my f*ck boy.
Drag Race alum you don’t want to share a dressing room with:
I don't want to share a dressing room with Bob the Drag Queen because all I would be doing is laughing! We can't get anything done, but I love that.
Strangest thing you’ve bought online during COVID:
I bought a bracelet that doubled as a hand sanitizer compartment. So you wear the bracelet and then when you need to put hand sanitizer on you turn your wrist over and push the button and hand sanitizer shoots out. It's the worst thing ever.
Does size matter?
Hell yeah. I'm sorry. It does. If you're only a bottom, it matters. That's all I got to say.
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