Home' LOTL : Mar 12 Contents Lady Miss Kier has come a long way from her
Groove in the Heart days...
Since she rst fell in love with music as a kid,
when she would "stay up late at night with my ear
to FM radio making my own little cassette mixes",
Lady Miss Kier has had an af nity for music. Is it
any wonder that she would grow up to become a
musician, singer and DJ?
At the age of 17 Kier moved to NYC and fell in love
with a DJ.
"I spent approximately ve nights a week dancing
though his entire eight hour sets at various clubs,"
she recalls. "I couldn't afford to drink and drugs
were on the streets, not the clubs in that era,
so dance music sort of was my escape from an
unstable home life."
Indeed music has always been something of a
salvation for Lady Miss Kier "coming from an
unstable home I always turned to music." Yet when
it came time to embark on a career, Kier initially
set out to make her mark as a fashion designer. "I
already was living with Dmitry (her Deeelite partner
in crime) for ve years when an NYC doorman
named Kenny Kenny asked me if I would be a
go-go dancer for his club with Suzanne Bartch,"
remembers Kier. "I wasn't able to sell my clothing
line at the time. It seemed the only people asking
to buy my clothes were drag queens. So I started
dressing bands and then we (Dmitry and I) had
written so many songs just for fun - that one day
I was asked to bring it to the stage. I didn't think I
would be a success as a singer but I felt it would
be a good way to expose my costume ideas."
And what exposure! Soon Lady Miss Kier became
a household name as a member of Deee-lite and
a fashion trendsetter of the early 90s. How did
the girl from Pennsylvania adjust to the global
"I was able to see the shallowness of fame early
on because it's not something I ever wanted," says
Kier. "I prefer the process of writing good music to
the trappings of fame and that's why it was easy
for me to quit the band and leave that all behind.
Even though people recognized me everywhere, I
was able to pretend I was invisible and live a more
Since leaving Deee-lite, Lady Miss Kier has
embarked on a DJ career -- indeed the punters will
be shaking their groove thang to her tunes at the
Mardi Gras party this month, which Kier says she
is "very excited" to be playing at.
"I've got 16 years experience as a DJ and look
forward to dropping many uplifting songs that
everybody should know. I'm looking forward to
playing Whitney Houston's 'Love Will Save the
Day' - the only house track that didn't sound like
a remix that she did and also her only single the
label was afraid to promote..."
As for her favourite party anthem, Kier says that
"changes every day. But for today I'd say ' I Like
What You're Doing to Me' by Cheri."
Don't miss Lady Miss Kier when she plays at the
Mardi Gras party. Tix on sale now!
Was a career in the music biz always on the cards?
A career as a conceptual artist was always on
the horizons for me. My parents were both visual
artists and cra speople and had instilled in me
at a very young age the importance of personal
expression through art. I used to stay up all night
and draw. My parents would have to take my paper
and pencils away from me so I could go to sleep.
My major in college was in experimental lm, but
as I developed into a real person, I found myself
in the feminist art scene in new york. I worked in
many di erent mediums before I was asked to be
a part of Le Tigre which is really how I started my
career in bands.
First job in the biz? Best gig? Worst gig? Why?
Le Tigre. Best gig. And worst gig. It set me up
for some pretty high standards but was the most
rewarding and I am so grateful for everything
it has given me.
You're probably best known for Le Tigre but how
would you describe your musical style to the
My musical style is conceptual in production
(whether obvious or not). And punk in
methodolog y. But dance in feel.
As an artist what gets your creative juices
owing? How important is it to you to create
work that inspires?
I am inspired by adaptation in whatever way
possible. Whether that's from lm to song. Or
from heart to paper. I like the idea of feelings
being transported from some kind of tube into
another style. From one person to another.
From one response to another.
You've become quite a role model for young LGBT folk, does
that bring with it a sense of responsibility?
I try to stay away from taking on the part of
politician. I'm just a person and I must believe
that for myself. I try to stay honest and sincere and
that's all I can really give constantly and with no
interruption. Which I hope is something that can
be reliable. I try to be myself and feel strong about
it. at's di cult but I think admirable to young
LGBT folk who are afraid to be themselves. Or will
see some kind of backlash for doing so.
For a time you became the poster child for androgyny,
your face was everywhere, from magazine covers to
your own calendar - how did that experience effect
you -- How did you feel going from nerdy arty kid to
butch lesbian/queer icon?
It was rough, I have to be honest. All the sudden
there was this desire surrounding my body that
hadn't been there before. I tried to be responsible
with it and make sure that I wasn't taking advantage
of my position. I took it on as an activist. My body
was a way to help change the world. at that point,
whether I wanted it or not. And so I just learned
to appreciate what I had been given to help other
people be themselves and feel strong.
Do you try to set goals for yourself as an artist? What
do you think is your greatest accomplishment to
You know, its always hard to be real with
yourself in the moment. About goals and plans and
everything. But I'm a very goal oriented/deadline
person. So it's interesting that personally I have such
a hard time with them. My greatest accomplishment
has really just been to be myself and try my best. I'm
proud to have been in Le Tigre, to be doing well with
MEN. But I truly believe that I will accept whatever
is given to me and feel proud to be making art.
What kind of music inspires you? What can we expect
from a typical set?
I'm inspired by all kinds of stu . I guess more
so than anything I love when people take chances.
With production, with lyrics. I love making people
happy so I generally play whatever people are ecstatic
about in my DJ sets.
What can the punters expect to see from you at Mardi
Mardi Gras is going to be exciting for us as MEN
playing to our crowd for sure. And for my DJ set
people can expect to hold each other a lot. And to
smile. Like really big. Your faces are going to hurt.
lotl.com • Lesbians On The Loose Magazine
Profile | Lifestyle
From Le Tigre to poster child for
androgyny, JD Samson has come a
long way baby... She stops by LOTL
for a chat on her way to Mardi Gras...
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