Hurricane Christeene

A field trip to Austin, TX with creative superhuman Paul Soileau

Interview and portraits for Gayletter Magazine, FW 2018/19


Back in 2012, I saw Christeene perform at her very first gig in Brooklyn at Glasslands Gallery. It was a high-energy terrorist drag show with lots of mooning and stage diving. The crowd went wild. By that time, I was already familiar with her music, videos and filthy lyrics:

I am your new celebrity
I am your new America
I am the piece of filthy meat
That you take home and treat to yourself

“African Mayonnaise” (2012)

But it’s Christeene’s live show that won me over and left a real impression—the interaction with the audience that I found very poignant and sincere, the no-bullshit approach to the issues of gender politics and politics of gender, censorship and policing of our queer community. It was very raw, dirty, entertaining and enlightening at the same time. I was enchanted by Christeene and ever since wouldn’t miss a chance to see her perform.

Always late night affairs, Christeene and I met socially a number of times before or after her appearances and had our pictures taken together. But I knew very little about the person behind the act, the Austin-based native of Louisiana Paul Soileau. And when the opportunity came along for me to visit Austin for an artist residency at the Museum of Human Achievement (MoHA), I knew right away that I want to go on a field trip with Christeene, to document and investigate.

When Paul and I finally met, it felt like a déjà vu, like we’ve known each other for years. I got to witness and capture the whole process of transformation of Paul into Christeene and back to Paul again. I couldn’t wish for a better tour guide, we drove around Austin in Paul’s old red pickup truck and revisited the locations for “African Mayonnaise.” After our first day of shooting, we sat in the park by the beautiful Colorado River where we recorded our conversation, with several more takes on the road that followed.


Slava Mogutin: Let’s talk about how “African Mayonnaise” video and that song came about.

Paul Soileau: It was when we started first seeing the Kardashians on TV and that kinda shit started getting popular. We were just getting fed a lot of crap from reality television, it leapt forward and you started seeing people obsessing over the Real Housewives. And I just started questioning what celebrity was. Comparing our old celebrities to these new celebrities, it was really bothering me that these new celebrities were infiltrating this space that I always hold dear for old movie stars. The pop culture was just so obsessive, and the celebrity-ing of everyone; a dipshit on YouTube with a phone could become a celebrity… So, I just got pissed and I figured if those people could be celebrities, why couldn’t Christeene be your celebrity? Because underneath it all, if you find Christeene ugly or offensive—well, the new celebrities are just as gross.

SM: Was the whole character of Christeene a response to something? Or was it something that you invented independently that had a life of its own?

PS: It’s both. I was moving around a lot, the hurricane in New Orleans brought me here, to Austin. It definitely came from the hurricane aftermath—being uprooted and the chaos of that when you’re trying to find home in a place you don’t know anything about. But I also just wanted to do something different. It was feelings inside; all these characters are based off of feelings. Things like sexuality, identity and issues that you personally grapple with like gender, and where do you fit in? The older I get the more questions I have for myself, and Christeene answers those a lot faster for me. I don’t know, I’m in such a wacky mood. [Laughs.]

SM: What would Christeene say about her own birth?

PS: Christeene’s always said, “I’m from the dirt.” There’s no origin to Christeene and I made it a point that I don’t want her to have an origin. It’s almost like the more I spend time with her, the more she becomes mythological, like a spirit. Christeene to me is more: I call forth Christeene! She comes and inhabits me and takes me on a spiritual journey throughout my realm...

SM: Or criminal mischief?

PS: Sure, criminal mischief or affection with people I wouldn’t normally have the opportunity to give that to. Like the doorman last night [at Perfume Genius concert who asked to take a selfie with Christeene]. That interaction to me was special. If I were simply Paul walking through that door, I’m just Paul. But Christeene being this wild beast that has found a hole in her world and gone through it created that relationship with that man and that’s why I like going out as Christeene. To go out as Christeene for me is to be led out by Christeene. I don’t feel in control, so it’s not like I’m gonna put on this outfit and get recognized and it’s gonna be fun. I leave myself at home and I let her take over. It feels like she’s this spirit in another realm that needs my body to get around here, and to do what she needs to do. I stay out of it and I let her “borrow” me to do what she does. That’s the unexpected joy I got from the character after creating it.

SM: So Christeene is almost an oracle of sorts, a vessel?

PS: I’m a vessel for Christeene and then when Christeene’s in me, she becomes a vessel for the crowd, for the people. For them to become vulnerable, to feel different about themselves because of this monster or beautiful bird in front of them, however they look at it. It’s really satisfying. It’s more satisfying than dangerous. I welcome the danger of it but it’s really a unique experience. I’m really in love with that feeling, and I want more of it but I don’t always… I’m not dressed up as Christeene all the time, so it is rare. And when it happens, it’s this nice thing. Unless I’m on tour and I’m doing it every fucking night—but then she just rents my body for a summer and I go away. It’s like, okay, I’m gonna do a month of Christeene at the Edinburgh Festival every night for a month. Well, that’s just like signing your fucking soul over to the devil basically ‘cause every fucking night you gotta let that shit loose so it gets hard sometimes, but I’m still alive…

SM: Does it have anything to do with your Catholic upbringing? You seem to be very different on stage, obviously, you’re not that way in real life. What are the mechanisms to becoming her?

PS: From the Catholic upbringing, the two things you learn is the force and power of ritual and then the spirituality of it. There is that “Holy Ghost”—what the fuck is the Holy Ghost?! Letting things in in that way and then—singing. I was always in the church choir.

SM: There you go, I guessed right!

PS: [The Church] gave me an environment for singing. And the theater of religion—oh my God—it’s so theatrical! It’s full of dark fucking spiritual shit. So I was raised in that environment but the ritual aspect is the biggest thing I took from it. Because there’s a ritual to putting Christeene on, taking Christeene off, there’s a ritual to the show, the pageantry and the costumes we create with the dancers and what we present.

SM: Would you say Christeene is a sort of Antichrist?

PS: No… but maybe to some people! [Laughs.]

SM: Because on stage she appears at times as very dark and almost Satanic, you know?

PS: But also sweet! I think to some people Christeene looks like Satan or Antichrist only because she might be making people feel something about themselves that they’re not supposed to. Like, their religion tells them “No, you can’t be this sexual” or “You can’t kiss another person of the same gender.” Or you can’t eat meat on a Friday or some shit. And Christeene’s just ignorantly blazing through this world with zero knowledge of what your social graces and norms are, or what your faith is. Christeene is a creature that only operates off of what you feed her and she’s just giving you back what she’s absorbing. Christeene was created off the madness that I was being bombarded with, in every way. Like my own personal madness but also the world’s.



SM: Can you name a few people who kind of shaped your aesthetic and vision?

PS: This is a tricky question because I didn’t grow up with a lot of art in Louisiana. I’m a very late, late bloomer with art and culture.

SM: I’m not talking of art, it could be anyone who influenced you personally or Christeene as a performer. As far as your stage persona, in my mind somehow it’s a continuation of the same tradition as The Rocky Horror Picture Show, Alice Cooper, and Twisted Sister, all the way to Marilyn Manson.

PS: Film is a huge influence for me, more than music. Rocky Horror was big for me but I never want to sound like a pompous asshole or weird and rude and ignorant to say I can’t give you a specific person or work that influenced Christeene. I think of it more as things that I personally am searching for. Christeene embodies gender, theater, music, choreography, costume, makeup—a lot of things that are inside of me… So, people that did that for me as a child were Boy George, Divine… I just blank, I feel like a jackass when I try to think of influences!  

SM: As far as performance artists that you’ve worked with, who are your favorites? You were telling me about your early days at Barracuda Bar in NY.

PS: That was huge. When I worked at Barracuda, I would say that was my education crowd-wise. Each performer had their own night. It was very drag-heavy. So Candis Cayne, Shasta Cola was a really big one for me, Honey Dijon was DJing, Mona Foot, Girlina would DJ and sometimes perform. I learned a lot from those performers, the way they were fucking with gender and queering up gender, and they were handling a drunk crowd in a small room every week. They were dealing with a city that was going from Clinton to Bush to 9/11, with no dancing in the bars, restrictive and chaotic living. So they taught me a fuck ton about how to have fun but also to wrangle a crowd. They helped me hone in on what I was good at and make it better… My friends influence me—people that just don’t stop, that nonstop working and churning and burning yourself to the core. I am attracted to people who can still manage pain, a personality and a light inside of them while they’re just working their asses off.

SM: It sounds very profound and sincere!

PS: I opened for Suicide [the legendary electronic proto-punk duo], and I didn’t even know who Suicide were! There’s a part of Christeene’s ignorance that’s very close to my own. Don’t you dare write that down! [Laughs.]

SM: It shines through!

PS: Winning ignorance... Oh God, I wish we could erase all of that. It sounds so hollow!

SM: Now you’re being modest. I feel it’s important to talk about your background, at least in abbreviated form. There are a lot of kids out there who deal with gender issues and who feel like total misfits, fuckups and outsiders—all the people who relate to Christeene, and for them it’s important to learn that you’re basically a self-made person. I think it’s important to know how it happened. And that’s why I wanna hear it for myself, that’s why I feel like there’s no shame in sharing it. I understand you don’t want to lose the mystique of it.

PS: I guess so. I like learning more about you, where you’re from, how you ended up here. So I think it’s just my own personal hangup about it. ‘Cause it’s not like, “Oh, I wanna keep the mystery.” Everybody knows that Paul is Christeene.

SM: Maybe in Austin they do, but when you perform elsewhere and people see you on stage, it’s a very different expectation. In fact, I didn’t know what to expect before meeting you as Paul.

PS: Right? But I didn’t know either from you. Like, your persona. Look at your books, look at who you hang out with, your photographs, your past. No one knows who these people are behind their personas. And I just kinda think, people get to know a side of Christeene when they talk, hang out, go eat with Christeene, versus the stage. And that personal, intimate experience of Christeene is just the same, it has the same kind of effect as if I were to tell you about myself being Christeene. Does that make sense?

SM: Yeah. To experience Christeene is…

PS: It’s getting to know Christeene more off of the stage. Like when we were drinking the other night and hanging out in the yard. Or if we were to go have dinner somewhere. The experience of that, you’re gonna get to know her more and be more intimate with her, and you will get to understand secrets about her you would never know on stage. It’s tricky—I guess, these are just the things that crazy people like me go through when we have people living in our head.

SM: Except that your everyday life seems to be quite fulfilling… and that’s the thing, maybe Christeene is an outlet for all your anger and anxiety because you seem to be so volatile at first. I was expecting someone way more agitated, angry, neurotic, and fucked up. So, perhaps, it’s a sort of therapy?

PS: It’s definitely therapy, it helps me… Everything looks so easy from a certain point of view, or if you’re in a certain part of the room looking at something else. The same expectations that you might have, you were just saying you thought I might be chemically imbalanced, crazy, full of anger, wreckin’ my car, drunk all the time, fucking everything that moves—you name it. I would think that if I saw Christeene. So yeah, the way Christeene might make other people feel, it does the same thing for me.


SM: Of all the places you’ve performed at, what was your best and worst experience as far as the venue and crowd?

PS: One of the worst rooms and the best experience was in London at Vogue Fabrics. And I say that because it was one of those nights, it was in a basement, no stage, no air, the ceiling was dripping right above your head. Me and the two boys were performing on a bench in this hole in the wall, and we had never performed in London. And, my friend Lyall Hakaraia runs Vogue and invited us down there and everybody came. I was really amazed at the different people that were in that room. Like, Princess Julia was up on the wall. It was just this whole mix of old London nightlife and weird young people shoved into this basement and it was hot. It was good. But when we walked in there I was like, What the fuck is this room? How are we gonna do this? Brett, my DJ and one of my producers, figured out how to make the sound and the lights work down there. It wouldn’t have happened without him. It wouldn’t have happened without the boys getting on that bench. It wouldn’t have happened without people filling it up. And it wouldn’t have happened without Lyle letting us into this fucked up place and was one of those magic, really magic, nights where everything that was completely unexpected happened. And those shows are the best, they’re raw. You’re out there on the floor and the crowd’s in front of you and you’re just screaming and they’re up on benches trying to see, and everybody’s just packed. And from that show, the gates of London opened up, you know? And then the gates to the rest of the world opened up. It was really special.

SM: What year was this?

PS: I wanna say 2014. But that’s just kind of the situation too, where you say what was the best or the worst, like, that had all of it. ‘Cause I looked at it and went, this is gonna be the worst show you’ve ever fucking done, because of the room, the sound, the lights, the size… And then we just did it, ‘cause you just do it, right? And it was the best, it was special. And then another example. You would think Glastonbury Festival would be the best, but it was kinda the worst we ever did.

SM: Tell us why?

PS: We did Glastonbury festival and it was insane, crazy, the whole experience… it was fun but really strange. They put us on this huge stage in this place called “Hell” and there was fire blowing out of the walls and they had this thing where—we’re used to these intimate situations where you can at least slap someone in the face or spit on them—and this stage had this line across the front and they were, like, “You cannot cross this line because of these pyrotechnics, so if you cross the line, we’re just telling you that everything will shut down.” Like there’s a thing on it, the fire will shut down and the sound will shut down. And that line was like ten feet from the audience or some shit, we couldn’t get personal with the crowd. So it was like, oh wow, we’re playing Glastonbury Festival, but I can’t cross this line on stage and touch my audience!

SM: So you’re saying that basically your model is playing at smaller venues?

PS: I wanna be able to touch…

SM: …and spit at your audience!

PS: Yeah, the spit’s gotta be able to reach, and I gotta be able to jump on top of them and let them hold me up. The boys need to be able to shove their crotches in people’s faces. It’s more enjoyable, you want those sets to be more intimate.

SM: How much do identity politics play in your work?

PS: A lot. I guess that started happening the more we toured. At first I was just touring, I was having fun. Then you start realizing that the work you’re doing is making ripples of effects on people, good or bad, and you start realizing that people out there are dealing with shit that you can help with or be a part of, use your platform for something. You start looking at your own personal beliefs and how you wanna use your work to express those beliefs. Everyone has sort of a platform, or your own self. How do you choose to use it? So if you’re touring and you created this kind of aggressive, loud, sexualized beast, it was only natural for me that it would start to lean towards issues of identity, community, censorship of our community, our people. Being queer, we’re sexual beings, we should celebrate those things. I definitely allowed politics and social policing, all of that to enter the realm of the work and to be discussed. And I discuss it on stage and I discuss it in person with people. It’s important to me.

SM: We talked about your family, I’m just curious how they feel about Christeene and if they know Christeene personally.

PS: Yeah, they… they’re aware. They’re aware of all the shit I do. They have met Christeene personally and it makes them laugh. They’ve never seen a show. That would probably make them scared, but I want them to. And I’m really fortunate that they know about what I do… Who cares… you know what I mean? Who gives a fuck? To me it’s like, if I finish a show and this kid comes up to me, or somebody writes a letter and they’re like, “Wow, you made me feel like there was a place for me tonight in the world.” First I’m like, what the fuck? Like, this made you feel that way? That’s my first reaction, like, okay, that’s fucked up. But then I think about shows I’ve been to. I think about last night, we saw Perfume Genius. And I usually would be like, Oh, this is gonna be a mellow show, it’s going to be laid back and I’m gonna feel beautiful things with the beautiful voice he has and the lush sounds. But I had several moments last night where I needed that show. And I was dealing with things personally where that show and him as a person and choices he’s made as an entertainer, as a person. I thought, oh, I can relate to this guy and I can pull myself into a zone and I can kind of heal myself. I’m interested in that moment when that work does something for someone. And then I think it’s doing that for me too. This work saves me, it’s changing me, it’s giving me hope. It’s doing the same thing for you. Those things to me are the important things. I believe in the magic of theater and imagination and allowing yourself to break away from these constrictive spaces we give ourselves that just are less and less beautiful, less imaginative, less ritualistic, less personal. We’re pulling ourselves away from intimacy, from conversation, you know? And then we’re also judging each other all the time in that vacuum of being around each other. We’re doing online judgment. I think that if I start to talk about me, where I grew up, what my parents do, who my influences are, they don’t feel to me… to me those kind of questions start to break down or corrupt the magic of the work.

SM: Were there any instances when you had a crowd that was so bad and so difficult that you couldn’t deliver the actual message or the performance that you planned to do?

PS: The thing I like most about Christeene is that usually she’ll perform better in a space that she doesn’t belong in, because you're showing something to someone that they really normally would never see. You’re making their brains click and flip and question themselves. Question if they wanna stay. Question if they should leave. The worst times I’ve had really are when people are too fucked up. They’re too drunk or too drugged out to be able to feel or process what I’m giving them. When you do a gig that’s just too late in the night and everyone’s just blitzed and they’re not plugged in, they just wanna see something, then you’re just like this puppet for them. You’re just this toy for their drugs and their booze, but they’re not allowing you in because they’re so fucked up. Like yeah, it’s fun to fuck their night up, if they’re tripping their balls off.

SM: Yeah, but Christeene has a stage persona that is seemingly of out of control and fucked up too...

PS: Not when she talks to you though. On the stage she talks between songs and that’s when people stick around. I always like to hit them with three songs and then talk. And if they can survive those three songs they’ll stick around. [Continues as Christeene.] How y’all doin’? It’s so good to be here. I don’t belong here, but thank y’all for bringin’ me. Y’all have a really nice bathroom and everybody’s so nice. This song’s about assholes. [Back to Paul.] You know? It’s like, that’s theater. It’s a design that allows her to operate to her fullest potential. It kills any thought or preconception you had about her, right?

SM: Pretty much, yes.

PS: If I just went out there and just screamed my set, no talking—“thank you, fuck you, thank you, fuck you”—stealing that drink, spitting on people, goodnight! Yeah, that’s a cool show, right? It’s angry, it’s punk, world sucks, fuck it! But that’s not me, I wanna talk about shit. And I want this fuckin’ weird raccoon goat woman to talk for me. And so, bring every preconception you have. Bring it because it’ll teach you not to have preconceptions about people. Not to judge people off their look, off the way they talk. It flips shit and it’s fun.

SM: Now you sound like your city!

PS: Well, we’re in Austin! I’ve been here for eleven years, it’s like land of the hippies.

SM: Any offense is a validation, in a good way.

PS: But I was like that before… that’s how I like to get to know someone, you know? Intimacy through theater, intimacy through that performance. Every time I see an artist sing I always wish they would’ve talked more, I wanna hear that. And the ones that don’t talk… oh, it’s so painful! I’m doing things with Christeene that I want out of other people. I hate when artists don’t talk, it makes me so sad ‘cause I want to know something about them. I can get a better understanding if they talk to me. And that’s only because I’m not a strict musically inclined person. Some people just want that music because the music did something for them, right? Because the music made them feel a certain way. They want to hear that song live, see it maybe, and then go home. But I just… I need to hear a voice, I need to hear a personality or something. So I designed Christeene that way… to give an audience what I don’t get a lot of times when I see artists. Or I just get a “Thank you, it’s so good to be here. Thank you. Thanks for having us. Here’s the band. Thank you.” I liked it when Perfume Genius told us a story about Coachella and those guys up there, and they threw a wet coat on stage, and he couldn’t tell if they were nice or what… I’m relating to you, I can tell it’s honest, and it’s not what I’d expect him to say. You know, if you’re gonna be mean to me then—fuck you, bitch!—I’m gonna be mean to you. I wouldn’t really expect him to say that. I would maybe expect him to cry a lot and to be sad. But he’s not, he’s actually very saucy. He told us himself he doesn’t like to talk about politics and stuff, it doesn’t interest him.



SM: Let’s talk about sobriety now. I must say, the most unexpected thing about meeting Paul is that the person behind Christeene is completely sober now. When I met Christeene years ago, she was quite a drinker, wasn’t she?

PS: I watched other people that I respect and who continued to go out and be wild and not drink, and I’m like, how do they do it? I was fascinated by it ‘cause I knew one day I would do it myself. Many friends of mine who are active like me stopped drinking. I’m very drawn to people who stopped drinking and can still entertain and go out, and people who transitioned. Because those two things—sexuality, personal gender confusion, mysteries of gender and the mysteries of alcohol—are the two things that I grapple with every day of my life. Not alcohol, alcohol I grapple with when I go out. I’m not a day drinker, I never have liquor in my home. If I do have it in my home I don’t touch it. It’s only when I go out, and I am a binger. I can just do it till I’m done, till the next day… So I just kept watching them quietly for a few years and talking to them, just curious. I was really like a barracuda, I was just absorbing things from the environment. And then I absorbed enough to where I could say, “Okay, let’s give this a shot!”

SM: No drugs though?

PS: The only drug I’ve ever almost gotten in trouble with is painkillers. Because they’re so nice and easy! I can totally understand the addiction to painkillers, but I’ve had my share. I’ve never done heroin and I would never do it because I know my personality would probably love it so much that I would not be able to stop. Cigarettes I finally quit but I’m gonna want them till the day I’m dead. And that’s it. I gotta deal with that.

SM: So how did you actually quit?

PS: I laid out all the vices on the table, like my children. Okay, we got alcohol, cigarettes, cocaine, weed, mushrooms, molly, ugh… those are really the ones that I want. I laid ‘em all out and said, “Okay, I’m gettin’ older. Who’s been in the house the longest? And which of my children here have I been supporting the longest?” And I said, “Fuck off, kids! It’s been fun and now it’s time for y’all to move out of my fucking house. Go to school, get a job, take care of yourself, ‘cause you’re hurting me now.” I looked at all my drug children and I said, “Cigarettes, you are gone. I’ve been taking care of you since I was thirteen. It’s time for you to leave.” And then I said, “Alcohol, you know what, it’s gonna hurt but I’m gonna kick you out too.” But then I say, if I do those things, I still got other kids. I’m just removing those two ‘cause they’ve been in my life forever. They’ve taken up space for so long so get rid of ‘em! I don’t even touch cocaine anymore ‘cause it’s just a rude friend who’ll shit in your house. But mushrooms, molly, weed—those are very fine people. And a painkiller can come over every now and then…

SM: So it was all about self-help, no AA or NA?

PS: I don’t go to AA meetings, I don’t do all that stuff. I knew it was something I wanted to do ‘cause it would make my work better. Make my body and brain better. I believe in superhumans and I want to be a superhuman, a creative superhuman, like a machine. With all the darkness in the world, the best thing you can do right now is to be the best machine you can be, so you can deal with those things. I have to think that way to make myself do things. I’m a creative, imaginative clown, so I have to talk to myself in a different way than a doctor saying, “that’s gonna kill you.” Who cares? This truck will kill me one day. Going up that bridge could kill us. So I like to think of myself as a machine, and a superhuman, and I wanna be super. And so weed and mushrooms don’t hurt that, they actually make it better ‘cause they open up my brain more. Acid? Sure, opens up my brain more if you do it with the right people. But Mr. Cocaine and Mr. Cigarette and Mr. Booze, Mr. Jack Daniels is not the kindest man. He’s like George Jones and Tammy Wynette. They’re nice in public but they beat the shit out of each other at home.

SM: Learn from the best! Now I want Christeene to be my sobriety coach!

Let’s talk about your new album, Basura. How would you describe it in comparison to your first one? Like, how dirty?

PS: It’s still dirty. It’s not as… there’s more anger in Basura, but also more vulnerability. There’s a more intimate side of Christeene in it, but lyrically it’s filthy. She hasn’t cleaned up at all. But it’s just more aggressive. It’s not so much a kind of wild child, slinging vulgarity and shit and dick…

SM: Not the Tourette’s?

PS: It’s more honed in on, like… Christeene understands a little more of what she wants now. And Christeene understands you a little more and knows how to maybe talk to you in a different way or manipulate you in a different way, ‘cause she’s been around for nine years now, she’s starting to get wise to certain things. I didn’t know what the sounds of her music were going to be, some songs kind of go towards country, some are more R&B or strictly electronic with no instruments. There are different genres of music that Christeene queers up, and then she eats them and makes them her own. That first album was a lot of eating and shitting and just destructively tearing through things. And this album is a little more where Christeene has a better understanding of the environment that’s around her, of the people and what they want from her, what they can get from her and what they’ve got from her. And how much she wants to give now instead of just fucking giving all of it. So, it’s fun to see that evolution happen, and I think in Basura we’re really seeing what nine years of Christeene on earth has done to her. But aggressiveness and filth and all of that it’s there. And in the videos you see it too. She’s changed, like if you watch “Fix My Dick” and if you watch “Action Toilet” or “Butt Muscle,” there’s a huge difference.

SM: Have you been censored in some ways?

PS: Well, as most queer artists I know, I’ve been taken off of YouTube. I mean, I automatically kind of assume I’m being censored because I say horribly filthy things. So I’m never gonna end up on the radio, really. I could be. Just change out all the shit… but who’s got time to do all that?

SM: Do you think you could ever become mainstream to the point where you would be on the national television, packing stadiums? Is Christeene capable of achieving that kind of exposure level?

PS: I don’t think mainstream. There’s no way that Christeene would be or I would want her to be mainstream.

SM: Would Christeene ever consider putting out a G-rated product?

PS: Well, for the fun of it, my friend Russell Reed and I made an album called “Hims.” So like a church hymn, it’s called a hymn. And we took eight Baptist church songs and recorded Christeene singing them, just for fuckin’ with religion and crap. That’s probably the sweetest thing I’ve ever done. But then I threw in a lot of cuss words too. I really don’t know, I’m letting her write a children’s book right now. It’s dirty. Yeah, I don’t think she’ll ever be clean.

SM: So you predict a long future for Christeene, or is it gonna be a project that has a beginning and an end?

PS: Well, no. Christeene stays alive as long as I keep her alive. I can kill Christeene whenever I want.

SM: Would you?

PS: Sure, I think that’s exciting! I would drown her, for sure!

SM: And what would be the first sign of “time to go, Christeene”?

PS: It’s like a relationship. You break up with boyfriends, right? When it stops working? I break up with Christeene but I’ll just kill her. In a way, Justin Vivian Bond killed Kiki. V took Kiki away from people but Kiki came back, and then Kiki went away again. So these characters, for the people who make them, they’re part of us. I don’t think I could ever get rid of Christeene but I could probably put her in a sack and hide her for a long time. But I would know when to stop, naturally. If it’s not feeding me, if it becomes capitalistic or materialistic or just for show. If I lost the thread of conversation, political, cultural, sexual, if those things became just articles on the shelf that I kinda polished to keep her relevant, I’d kill her. It would hurt, but I would. I would drown her in this very river.