Fashion Bug Chasers
Fashion Bug Chasers
Photo by Kurt Fowl

Fashion Bug Chasers and Xotic Yeyo Rock Churchill's LGBTQ Fest

Rod Reiter's gig at Churchill's falls on May 17, the International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia, and Biphobia. "I grew up when homophobia was a normal thing," he says. "I got abuse in high school in Boca Raton just for being friends with a gay kid. In my lifetime, homophobia's thankfully become a horrible thing. Once you understand people, you can accept them. So I wanted to create an all-inclusive, positive event that celebrates LGBTQ."

LGBTQ (Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgendered Questioning) Fest will feature art, speeches, and information tables from Miami Dade College Pride and the Unity Coalition, and most significantly, music. Reiter wanted the funk band in which he plays bass, Xotic Yeyo, to jam, but be also wanted to fill a majority of the bill with artists from the LGBTQ community. Among the ten local acts playing are Womenmay, Folktale San Pedro, and No Traffik. There will also be a visual projection show by Jose Garza.

One act Reiter knew had to be represented was Fashion Bug Chasers, Kurt Fowl's one-man band. Fowl, who's originally from Connecticut, moved to South Florida two years ago and quickly found himself in the middle of Miami's queer scene when he started the weekly Thursday night drag-show party, Double Stubble, at Gramps. "I find all the weirdos." Fowl says. "I thought the queer scene was already happening in Miami, but people tell me I was a big part of starting it."

For Fashion Bug Chasers, Fowl plays drum machine, bass, guitar, and keyboard. He got his start at Churchill's International Noise Conference. "It has an electronic sound that's catchy and fun, with some songs more rock and roll. What I lack in musicianship, I make up for in a show. I change clothes with just about every song."

Among his homemade costumes are a Mickey Mouse helmet, jackets made of plastic donuts and ice cream cones, and clothes patched with homophobic slurs. He's a big believer in people not hiding from who they are, a message he relayed in one of his newest songs, "Fudge Packers Beware."

"There are all these guys on gay dating sites that have all these rules like you can't act gay," he says. "This song is for all those gay guys trying to be straight. I perform it like I would at a drag show." While some strive to be normal, Fowl says he relishes being different. "I try to bring something bizarre. It's punk rock, but very gay."

LGBTQ Fest
8 p.m. Wednesday, May 17, at Churchill's Pub, 5501 NE Second Ave, Miami; 305-757-1807; churchillspub.com. Admission is $5

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