|Return to Peppermint||
Peppermint, often used to flavor candy, offers a freshness underlined by a minty bite. Perfect name for Lip Sync Assassin, actress, musician, and activist Miss Peppermint – charming the media world with her glamour while sinking her teeth into life with her love of art and truth. She remains one of the most easily recognizable queens from RuPaul’s Drag Race and has been advancing the visibility for the trans community even before she entered the Work Room. She is not one to shy away from giving her opinion and calling it like it is. She has made trans and entertainment history twice, first as serving as the first openly trans competitor on Drag Race (coming out five years before being cast), and secondly, as the first out trans woman to originate a leading Broadway role for her performance in Head Over Heels.
She was a natural born performer acting in children’s theatre, Opera Delaware, community theatre, and high school plays. She continued her theatre studies in New York at AMDA, and quickly became part of the Big Apple’s nightlife scene and recorded her first single, Servin’ It Up, as part of Hey Qween’s Jonny McGovern’s mixtape project. She also appeared with Bianca Del Rio, Lady Bunny, and Sherry Vine in gay.com’s early web series, Queens of Drag: NYC.
Peppermint’s musicianship has been seen through her popular parodies, highlighted by her collaboration with Sherry Vine on their take of Lady Gaga’s Telephone. Most recently, she has released her most personal and ambitious project to date – A Girl Like Me: Letters To My Lovers. A Girl Like Me is the first in a trilogy of album releases about the three stages of Peppermint’s most recent relationship. The album trilogy took over a year to complete and focuses on Peppermint’s personal diary set to music with Volume 1 tackling the subjects of flirtation, lust, and love. Her first single, Best Sex, details her addiction to f*ckboys. The power of sexuality is fully explored, and she shares the story of how a hook up turned into a love story. She lays it all out, there is still a stigma in society where it is okay to hook up with someone trans but sharing a public relationship is a whole different matter. A standout from the album is Peppermint’s soulful cover of the Carole King classic, “Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow.”
We played a series of quick-fire question and answers with Peppermint, hot on the heels of the release of A Girl Like Me:
Music is a big part of your life, who were the first musicians you remember inspiring you?
My Mom says the first song I remembered and would not stop singing was “Upside Down” by Diana Ross.
When did you get the performance bug?
I think it was probably at that moment. Although I officially joined in on the action in middle school during my first paid play, Babes in Toyland.
You dealt with extreme bullying in high school, what advice do you have for any youth from the LGBTQ community being bullied at school?
Find your tribe, whether online or in person. And if you do not identify as LGBTQIA+, please publicly establish yourself as an ally. Someone will need it.
Tell me about your early NYC nightlife days. What do you miss most about those early days?
Wow, well, so many weekends we spent doing things that I am sure are illegal now. I miss all the mixed clientele at the clubs. Sure, there were gay bars, but many of the historic parties were all genders all sexualities all races. Just smushed together.
What was the defining moment that encouraged you to come out and go through your transition?
I have always been the same person. But after one big breakup, I looked around at everything I have and love, and still wasn’t happy.
What were your biggest personal challenges in competing on Drag Race?
Performing all day on an empty stomach. We could only eat when they told us, not when we were hungry.
There is still a resistance to trans drag competitors, why do you think that is?
I think there is some resistance to trans ANYTHING honestly. While I think it is improving, some people are really HUNG UP on the binary.
You are a lip-synch assassin! What do queens do right and what do they do wrong in lip-synching?
My biggest word of advice is to know the breaths and distinguish the “lead vocals” from the “background vocals”.
Your musical parodies are genius. Where do you get your sense of comedy from?
My guilty pleasure is cracking backward and inappropriate jokes at home alone. That’s where my sense of humor is from.
What makes a good parody?
I would say know all the nuances of what you are parodying.
What is your creative process in creating music?
I don’t have just one. But whatever it is, it involves collaboration and candy.
Tell me about opening night on Broadway, making history:
It was a dream. I was nervous but so happy
What are the biggest misconceptions people outside of the LGBT community have about transgendered people?
That transgender (no ed) people all want surgery.
You are the hostess with the mostess…what makes a good event host?
I think compassion. Knowing your audience.
I love Best Sex! Do you think talking about sex has become more acceptable and mainstream?
Yes, for sure.
Do you have a favorite hookup story?
My last relationship started as a one-night hookup that lasted a year. And it inspired this album. I’m grateful.
I’m moved by your Carole King cover…what made you choose “Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow”?
I really relate to the lyrics. I think we all know what it is like to wonder what the conversation will be after a night of hot sex!
What is your favorite part about recording a new album?
Recording the last song… and finishing it, so we can release it to the world!
You can check out A Girl Like Me here: https://lnk.to/LettersToMyLovers
Follow Peppermint on IG: @Peppermint247