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“Cazwell” Interview…New Album, Trannies and Male Sexual Entitlement?

Submitted by on Monday, 15 February 2010One Comment

ZW: We heard you’re shooting your next video for the new single Get Into It, from your new album Watch My Mouth.

Cazwell: I was suppose to, but the studio was not vacant. So, me and Amanda (Lepore) are shooting it next week. Actually, we have two more scenes to shoot. It should come out the same time as Amanda’s video for the song Marilyn, which is off her new album that comes out in Spring.

How does one get into it?

The song is about how someone could say ‘get into what I’m wearing’ or let’s ‘get into this jewelry. In the video, it’s all about close-ups on hot things…what we’re wearing. Kris Van Assche gave me some clothes from Dior Homme, and Amanda has an endless supply of fierce clothes. She’s showing her tits a lot!

Is this the new Cazwell…all grown up?

I don’t know if I’ll ever really grow up, but I try to keep evolving and give people something different. Every video has to look like the song sounds. I have to be fair to the song.

There’s a lot of trannies (transsexuals) in your videos. Artistic choice or preference?

I use what’s in my environment. I’m in gay nightlife, I surround myself with gay men, and I know a lot of trannies and androgynous people that pull looks. The trannies are the stars in my world! I was really nervous before I dropped the Tonight video, featuring Karis. I got that feeling of anxiety that people were not going to get it, people are going to think that I’m fake because I have this guy that looks like a girl in the video…they’re going to think I’m trying to be straight. People look into it too much. It’s about the song. Actually, it was the director’s idea. He was working on a film about transsexuals called Being T, produced by Janet Jackson, and he suggested using Karis.

Karis is a superstar! We saw her in the Scissor Sisters’ Filthy Gorgeous video and that Philip’s commercial for an epilator.

She definitely shines! I put a lot of thought into it before I asked her. We’ve hung out and partied a lot!

Is this a new album??? There’s a few songs that were on your first release.

The first album (Get Into It) that came out on West End Records in 2006 was an EP. It wasn’t a full-length album. The label wanted to test me out. There was some success with singles All Over Your Face and Watch My Mouth. Then Mel Sherin (former president of West End) passed away. The new head dropped me! Then there was this drama about if I could use those tracks if I signed to another label. Through that period, I was trying to work on new tracks, trying to keep my head above water. It was such a long process. It was 2008 before we finally got it together and Peace Bisquit decided to put it out independently. So, this is a long over due full-length album with some songs from the EP.

Is it necessary to put out albums anymore? Are people still buying actual CDs?

For me, a CD is a tool I use to reach out to people at live shows. If you want the physical CD/DVD and poster, you can get it on and I will autograph it! On my next album, I’m going to film a ‘making of’ for the DVD, and maybe a mini reality show!

We love the song Limosine, featuring the French erotic electro group Risqué…it’s very Italo disco.

The what disco???

The Italo disco sound…synths, 80s… That’s what Risqué is referencing.

I love Limosine! I’m planning on making a video for that. But it has to be weird! My vision is for me to be chained up and rapping while I’m getting whipped. I love that! But, Get My Money Back is probably my favorite song.

That brings up a good point! What exactly is that song about? The lyrics seem a bit random.

That’s an interesting question. The honest truth to that…I went into the studio and started recording a song called ‘Moody’, and the producer was like ‘You need to have songs that invite people to come to you’. I started to realize that whenever I write a song for someone else, it comes up so much more pop and accessible because I don’t put that pressure on myself about what other people are going to think. So I said to the producer, ‘Let’s not do a song for me, let’s write a song for Missy (Elliot)!’ The first thing I thought was that people love to ‘throw their hands in the air’. I just started writing about a combination of things, some good rhymes I had, meeting with the downfall of club life due to lack of financial support from New York’s government. It was done in an hour! The original I did was a remix from production duo Good and Evil. Then Lost Daze did a remix for it and I loved it so much, I made it the original.

Gay rap or nu disco?

I don’t think of myself as the gay rapper. I don’t consider myself hip hop at all. I’ve come to the conclusion that gay people and hip hop don’t mix because there’s no one in hip hop that is gay and out. The industry is not looking to sign gay people, and for the most part, straight people don’t roll with gay people in hip hop…or admit to it. So, I just started making the music I like. I thought, if anyone can bring rap to disco, it’s me!…and that’s how the track All Over Your Face came about.

NSFW!!! Pure raunch!

I don’t think it’s gay raunch. It comes with male sexual entitlement, which is a straight thing. When I play places like Portland, Oregon, and all these gay guys are singing along, it’s very empowering because gay guys get in control of their sexuality. It kinda wipes the shame away. I hope I make music people wanna dance to.

New York…Concrete jungle where dreams are made of? Is that you?

I’m trashy and flashy. I have a punk rock spirit. I’m inspired by groups like Peaches. I have a duet I wanna do with her… and would love to work with Roxy Cottontail or Fake Blood.

Anything else you want people to know about you?


We think you’re really fun, likable and up for it!

Okay, put that in!

Paisley Dalton

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