Big Freedia at Lincoln Theatre
Photo courtesy of I.M.P.

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Big Freedia at Lincoln Theatre

By now, Big Freedia should be a household name. Dubbed the Queen of Bounce, the New Orleans-based hip-hop artist has been making people shake their asses since 1999. In recent years, she’s worked with the likes of Lizzo and Kesha, while Beyonce and Drake have sampled Freedia’s work. (In Beyonce’s acclaimed 2016 music video for “Formation,” it’s Big Freedia you hear laying it down: “I did not come to play with you hoes. I came to slay, bitch. I like cornbread and collard greens.” Freedia’s voice also opened Queen Bey’s tour that year.) As her celebrity has grown, the artist has made visible the fluidity of gender and pronouns in the music industry—identifying as a gay man with a feminine stage presence, she’s agnostic on pronouns; she told SSENSE recently “I’m me. That’s my preferred pronoun. I tell people all the time, it don’t matter if you call me ‘he,’ ‘she,’ ‘it,’ whatever. I know who I am and that’s all that matters.” But her music extends beyond the queer community and embraces both the quintessential call and response and driving beats bounce is known for. Twenty-some years in, Big Freedia is still making music that inspires listeners to drop it low. On Sept. 17, she released her latest EP BDE or Big Diva Energy. As the title promises, the six songs spanning 17 minutes, deliver the type of energy that’ll make you forget everything but the dance floor. On Sept. 29, she’s bringing her BDE back to D.C. with a show that’s sure to transform Lincoln Theatre into the kinda club where all that matters is the perpetual movement of bodies. Local queer DJ LEMZ will surely help warm things up as the evening’s opener. For the uninitiated, Big Freedia’s live shows are notorious for making people dance and twerk like it’s a religious experience and, in fact, it can feel like one. Embrace it and get sweaty on the dance floor—Freedia knows we all deserve this. The show starts at 8 p.m. on Sept. 29 at Lincoln Theatre, 1215 U St. NW. $35.