Need To Know: Jont� Moaning
By Noah Michelson
In the press I�ve read about you, you�re often referred to as a drag queen or a tranny. How do you think of yourself in terms of your gender presentation?
I�m just an androgynous male. That�s it. I look good in women�s clothes so I might as well wear them, you know? That�s what it is. I�m really not a drag queen. Although I love drag queens, that�s really not me.
Totally -- I just wanted to hear it from your mouth. People love to label stuff --
Of course. I just don�t get it. But Gaga�s opening that door.
I saw her last night. What�s your opinion?
I haven�t seen the concert yet but I think she�s amazing because people are starting to open their minds a little bit about� looks. I hate to say it, but in this industry everything�s about a look. They look at you first and then decide if you�re good or not. It�s sad. But I�m thankful for her -- that she�s opening the doors for people who look different.
How does gender play and gender manipulation manifest themselves in your act?
You know I don�t even focus on gender at all. I make it very neutral: I am what I am and that�s it. When people come see my show they don�t even think �gay� or �faggot,� they just think it�s amazing. And that�s how it should be -- it shouldn�t be anything about sex. Because once they think sex then they think �you�re this,� or �you�re that.� It should just be about the art. I am the art.
You have gotten a lot of attention for choreographing other artists, like Beyonc� and Janet Jackson, as well as yourself. What inspires you when you�re choreographing?
Music inspires me. As soon as I hear a song I already have this vision in my mind: Oh my god, this would be perfect for this sound, or that voice. I do everything on the spot too, like when I worked with Beyonc� or Janet, everything is on the spot. I have to go into the room and hear the music first and then I also like to see if they can handle what I�m doing, because it has to look good on them. I hate to go home and choreograph on myself because it�s me. [Laughs.]
What do you have planned for 2010?
I�m going to release an album in Japan. It�ll be my first album release this year, so that�s my plan for this year. To see how that goes. Take it from there, probably go to Europe next.
How far along are you?
Oh my God, I have about 30 tracks that I�ve done. It�s just trying to select which ones are going to be on the mini-album. About eight or nine songs.
And when�s it going to be out?
We�re saying April�beginning of May.
Are you going to do a video?
Of course. Of course. You want to be in it?
Trust me -- that wouldn�t be good for anyone. But we�ll put it up on Out.com the minute it�s finished.
Jont� will be performing along with Cherie Lily, Bad Brilliance, Narcissister, Roxy Cottontail, Andrew W.K., and Dante�s Fried Chicken at Santos Party House, 96 Lafayette Street, NYC, on Thursday, January 28 from 7 to 10:30 P.M. The event is 18+, tickets are $10, and there�s an open bar (for those of legal age) from 7 to 8. For more details, head here.