Tattooed Love Boy


By Shana Naomi Krochmal

The band's style is very retrosexual. You're rocking this pre-punk, rough masculine look, almost like a greaser guy. Who inspires how you dress?
Our manager. When we first hooked up with him, he was like, "If you're gonna be a band, you have to look like a band." We're all very separately obsessed with fashion, but especially me. As a trans dude who doesn't do T, it's part of how I feel masculine out in the world, how I find confidence. It's become so organic now. We'll be getting ready to do a show, and we'll come out of our separate rooms and be like, Oh my god, people are going to totally think we coordinated this. But we didn't.

You got inked by Kat Von D. on an episode of L.A. Ink.
The tattoo is un-fucking-real. And she was super nice. She's an amazing tattoo artist and -- she's hot! What can I say?

Oh, good -- hot chicks. Let's talk about your personal life, starting with the Led Zeppelin question. Do you have groupies on the bus?
No, that's against the rules! We have a tour manager that says that's not allowed.

How do you describe your sexuality?
Weird. Queer. I mean, a lot of people think that because I identify as a transgender male that I identify as straight, and I'm like, Wow, you don't come from the world I come from, do you?

Do you date boys? Do you date girls?
I don't date boys. I date girls. And I'm attracted to women. But, you know, I used to be a lesbian, and now I identify as a transgendered man. The world is a big place with too many boundaries. I don't want to put myself in any boxes, because you never know what's gonna happen.

Do you have a girlfriend?
Uh, maybe?

Who were you making out with in the Cyndi Lauper video for "Into the Nightlife"?
[Laughs] A very cute girl. Her name's Brooke, but I don't know her last name. That was a really fun video. I didn't know I was supposed to make out with anybody. I get there, and there was one really cute girl in this bathroom stall that we were supposed to make out in -- and she just looked really frightened of me. She was too short, and I could tell she was totally straight, and I looked at her and said, "Are you okay with this?" And she's all, "Oh yeah, I'm an actress." And then Cyndi passes by and looks at her and goes, "You come with me," and grabs her by the shoulder. And next thing you know, she comes back with the girl you see in the video, and Cyndi says, "This is better. She's taller!" I'm like, great, awesome, I love tall girls. And she says, "I hear we're supposed to make out!" And I was like, "Yes!" She was totally queer, and totally comfortable with the situation. I love making out with pretty girls.

If you could make out with any hot famous chick, who would it be?
Oh God, you're going to get me in trouble. I woke up yesterday and our bus driver had gotten us all these crazy In Touch, Us Weekly magazines, because we like to read trash on the road, but I don't know! Maybe Amy Winehouse, if she decided to put on a few more pounds and stop doing drugs?

Who was your first celebrity crush?
When I was a kid, I really, really, really had the hots for Chryssie Hynde. It was the album cover where she's wearing this white, ruffled shirt. My girlfriend -- oops, I just gave it away. [Laughs] Yeah, I have a girlfriend. I had told her about this album forever. It really solidified me as wanting to be a musician, because I was like, Oh my god, it's a girl! And she plays music! And she's wearing a suit! And she's totally pretty!

Are the Cliks a "queer band"?
A lot of people will take issue with me, but I don't think any band should be categorized by sexuality or gender. There's enough boxes in the music industry whether you're rock or pop or this or that. We are a band that has members in it that are queer. We are band that has members in it that are transgendered and are female. I find tags like that are really narrowing, and that people feel a sense of disconnect with you. I don't like to do that as an artist. I'm very proud of the fact that I'm trans and that I identify as queer, but I don't ever want to identify my band as a queer band -- because we're not. We're a rock and roll band. I don't ever want a straight young kid, or a queer kid for that matter, or a kid of color, or a kid who's religious, to look at our band and say, "I can't really listen to that music because it doesn't belong to where I come from." I want to belong to everybody.

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