From the street, Wynwood's next Art Walk will be much like every other. An array of art enthusiasts will once again descend upon the area like well-dressed mosquitoes. Galleries will open their doors and lure pedestrians inside with the soft roar of air-conditioning. And artists and dealers will push their wares to
Down the road, though, a few blocks east of bustling NW Second Avenue, through a tremendous set of reflective doors, within the district's first true nightclub, there may be one of the most daring performance art projects to pass through Wynwood in recent years.
Rapper-slash-actor DMX is billed to be live onstage at, of all places, House Nightclub this Saturday. Details are scarce, but House confirmed the rapper's presence. Requests to DMX for an interview went unanswered.
What makes this an especially strange gig, though, isn't that DMX is coming to art walk (at this point in his life, DMX isn't exactly in a spot to refuse a paycheck), but that he will perform at House, a venue that — though not explicitly a gay club — is well known to cater heavily to
DMX, meanwhile, is best known for his raspy voice, gruff style, canine mannerisms, and crude and controversial lyrics. His 2003 song "Where the Hood At?" contains one of
But the rapper also has a talent for lyrical flexibility. Even later in "Where the Hood At?" DMX shifts to slightly more homo-erotic lyrics like, "Since we all right here, you hold my dick while he
Colorful content aside, it's hard to argue DMX's relevancy in the hip-hop timeline. His career, though important from a musical perspective, has been marred in controversy and run-ins with the law. He was famously arrested for a videogame-caliber crime in 2004 when, after impersonating an FBI agent, he attempted to steal a car at New York's Kennedy Airport. In his songs, he's a narrative shape-shifter who takes the character of an upright citizen in one line and transforms into Lucifer by the next. It's never safe or easy to take him at his word.
Pop singer Erika Jayne.
Photo by James Hickey
But there's more to this news. Yes, one of
Though the two performances are separate events, requiring different tickets to get in the door, it's still an odd pairing. In the early 2000s, during his heyday, who would have thought DMX would one day go back-to-back with a Real Housewife.
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But times have changed. Perhaps DMX's disagreement with homosexuality reflected the veiled intolerance of the early
Clarification: A previous version of this story said that DMX is "opening" for Erika Jayne. While DMX is scheduled to perform before Jayne goes onstage, House Nightclub says that he is not opening for the singer, and DMX's performance is a separate event.