Take me back to your very first performance. Was there a certain “Harmonicaism” that you always had from the beginning?
My very first performance was me doing “Is It Love” by Ultra Nate. I was really nervous, so if there was a Harmonicaism there, I can’t remember it.
You’ve performed in so many venues throughout the country. Can you tell me three song numbers that are must haves for an extended setlist?
I don’t always do a number wherever I go, but I do PUMP at every venue, and I have an extensive list of beats to choose from.
You contributed music to the soundtrack of the documentary “How Do I Look,” and your songs “Don’t Just Stand There,” “I’m Here To Work,” “Ready 2 Pump” and “Jokes” are played in the clubs. Have you ever thought about recording a full-length album?
I have never thought about recording a full-length album since my stuff is bitch tracks and I’m not a real singer. I think bitch tracks are better as singles.
You’ve performed on stage with Beyonce. Let the children know about that experience!
It was wonderful. Beyonce was doing a surprise show at the legendary Roxy back in 2004. Her stylist, Ty Hunter, asked me if I was interested in being a part of it and if I could bring a friend. I asked Jade Elektra and she happily obliged. We went to a rehearsal that day with the dancers and came back later that night for the show. The lights went down and the crowd went wild. “Baby Boy” started playing and I had my back to the audience. The crowd was none the wiser. After several choreographed moves, I turned around and they gagged. The music stopped and I grabbed the mic, said a few words and then introduced the Queen Bee. Highlight of my career thus far.
You also have a successful career as a stand-up comic. What are some of your own personal highlights of appearing on Logo’s “One Night Stand Up Dragtastic” special?
I really enjoyed working with the cast if that show, which included Pandora Boxx from Season 2 of “RPDR,” NYC comedy queens Bianca Del Rio (“RPDR” 6) and Hedda Lettuce, and West Coast funny diva Kelly Mantle (“RPDR” 6).The show helped get me more exposure, and whenever it airs, my fan page on Facebook increases!
Is it true that Miss Sunbeam sews a lot of her own costumes?
Noooooo. I just started sewing, so it might be a while before you actually see me wear something I made onstage. Now me wearing it to Walmart is a different story.
How does Harmonica feel about Sheila Noxzema?
Don’t hold back! As you may know, Sheila is Harmonica’s niece, and although there appears to be a lot of shade between the two, behind closed doors they are just as loving as they can be.
You’ve had an influence on a lot of entertainers in the club community. You were the first drag entertainer that I ever saw. How does it feel to be an inspiration to others in the same industry?
It feels great when folks tell you that you inspired them. Most people say I inspired them to NOT perform, so when I finally get someone who actually benefited from my
show, it brings tears to my eyes.
What is one of the funniest or awkward things that ever occurred during one of your performances?
Early on in my career when I was very self-conscious about people knowing what I looked like as a guy, some drunk at a bar in Newark called First Choice pulled my wig off during my neighbor. Let’s just say I forgot I was dressed as a lady when that happened.
What actors and singers inspired and shaped you growing up?
I love Carol Burnett, Flip Wilson and Lucille Ball. Their comedy, acting ability and timing were impeccable.
Tell me your thoughts on“RuPaul’s Drag Race.”
I think the show has opened doors and minds of mainstream media. The only thing that put a bad taste in my mouth is that the younger generation thinks you haven’t made it unless you’re on the show, and there have been many successful drag queens working and touring the country way before the show was even thought of. Like, me!
You have a slew of appearances coming up this summer. Please let the readers know about them!
On 5/31 at The Duplex in NYC, I’ll be hosting a Waiting To Exhale tribute show with a few co-stars. It’s a project that I always dreamt of doing, so I am bringing it to life. We will lip sync, discuss and argue over some of the movie’s highlights. Tickets are still on sale and can be purchased through me in person or via PayPal. Showtime is 6:30 p.m. and tickets are $10 with a two-drink minimum on the night of the show.
In addition to that, you can find me twice a month at Boa in Hoboken for Takeover Tuesdays, the second and third Wednesday of the month at Suite Bar in NYC, every Thursday for a Latin night at Feathers in River Edge, NJ, the third Saturday of the month at Elixir Lounge in Astoria, Queens, and one Sunday a month at Mamajuana Restaurant for We Love Late Brunch from 3-6 p.m.
You have also appeared in film and television. What has been your favorite role so far?
My favorite role was playing a hooker on “Law and Order.” It was a very intense episode, and I got to spend some quality time with Chris Meloni on set. What more could a gurl ask for?
One last thing, just because a guy dresses in drag does not mean he wants to be a woman. These are my work clothes and shows are a big part of my life but are
not my whole life. I enjoy what I do but I also embrace my male side to the fullest, so don’t judge my occupation without taking the time to know me.