Growing up, I was a black sheep, the oddball in my family. My parents, my brothers, my aunts, uncles, grandparents, cousins: none were drawn to the arts, none were interested in anything that bucked the status quo of church, deer hunting, and FM radio. And certainly, no one aside from me was gay.
Then I met my biological family — or half of it, anyway — and I felt as if I’d slipped into the Negaverse. In fact, my sister’s artistic drive is so pervasive, so ferocious, it makes my own work in theatre seem kindergartenish (yes, it’s a word) by comparison. And talk about your sense of drama. Oy.
She’s currently ramping up the press for her band/alter-ego, Grande Dame, and as part of those efforts, she’s dropped a free single for all of us to enjoy:
We have a month to go until Grande Dame’s live show! So to get yall in the mood, I thought I would offer a free download of our track CHICKEN MAN.
A few years back when I had my radio show, I used to sometimes play mixes of only songs with the word “chicken” in them. It’s a fact that 9 times out of 10, a song that references chickens is good. So to prove my theory, I thought I would write a song name checking that wondrous bird!
The Chicken Man was a real person named Prince Ke’eyama*. He was believed to be of Haitian origin, and was taught by his grandparents the art of Haitian witchcraft. In the 70s he moved to New Orleans and began to do magic shows, where he sacrificed chickens by biting their heads off and drinking their blood. He opened a voodoo shop in the French Quarter, telling fortunes & selling gris gris. He also began his own religion, The Cult of The Chicken Man, which built up a huge following of devotes. He became known as The Voodoo King of New Orleans.
He passed away in 1998, but his followers still remain. Legend has it that his ghost roams the Quarter at night. I used to see him all the time when I lived there in the 80s. I was always intrigued, but a little scared too! Anyhoo, it’s got a spooky vibe too, so perfect for Halloween! Enjoy!
Download the bass-heavy goodness here.
* I knew the Chicken Man, too, and she’s right: he was intriguing. I wouldn’t call him creepy, exactly, but the man had presence, that’s for sure.