Get to know the folks helping Big Freedia bring Bounce music from the clubs of New Orleans to arenas around the world. Catch the premiere of 'Big Freedia: Queen of Bounce' Wednesday, October 2 at 11/10c on Fuse!
August 23, 2013
There's only room for one Queen Diva around here, and that's Big Freedia. Boasting a style so fresh and catchy, it's like you're hearing Donna Summer in '75 or Run DMC in '83. As the emerging superstar of the New Orleans Bounce scene, Freedia's goal is to spread the gospel of Bounce to the rest of the world. But with all the cat-fighting on his management team, she's facing drama at every turn.
As Big Freedia's new manager, Renee (right) is under plenty of pressure to make Freedia's international tour a big success. While it's her first time managing an artist, Renee does have access to one of the West Coast's premiere hip hop studios (plus, her husband's a big-time record producer!).
Meet Vera (right), Freedia's mother. She's styled her hair for 23 years and supported her when she struggled to find her identity as one of the first gay rappers to break out. While the two share a deep bond, Vera's not a big fan of Freedia's new "style team," whom she sees as outsiders. After being diagnosed with cancer two years ago, Vera wants to spend the rest of her days ensuring that Freedia stays true to herself.
As one of Bounce music's first stars, Katey Red is known as the Original Bounce Mother. But with the arrival of new artists like Big Freedia, the sultry star struggles to reach out beyond her comfort zone and keep her stature as one of the genre's founding sisters. She and Freedia, however, will always be sister divas/BFFs first and foremost.
Rusty is the porkpie-hatted, gray-stached DJ extraordinaire behind Freedia's wall of sound. Outside his stage persona, Rusty is a thinker—the sage of Bounce. He's fully aware of the genre's importance to the city of New Orleans and works to keep the beat going no matter what. But how well will he fare surrounded by divas?
Melvin was Freedia's longtime manager until Renee stepped in to take the reigns. Feeling slightly threatened by her presence, Melvin is unsure if they share the same vision for Freedia's future. He's now the local New Orleans expert and tour manager, while Renee handles business beyond the city limits.
World of Wonder
Brought on board as Freedia's new hairstylist, Torelle is quite the drama queen. She immediately beefs with Vera (Freedia's mother), who doesn't like the idea of someone else styling Freedia's hair. Renee (Freedia's manager) starts drama with Torelle as well, while Freedia herself just wants to keep the peace amongst all these divas.
Sissy Nobby (right) is one of Bounce music's visionary songwriters and producers. With an eclectic sound that fuses Bounce, electro, Ragamuffin and rock, Nobby's music is Bounce at its purest and most creative. However, there's a bit of professional jealousy between Nobby and Freedia, who has surpassed Nobby lately. Freedia wants to protect her friend, but she can't hold back her own career ascension.
Shake Team (Tootie & Stef)
Along with Freedia, the Shake Team hopes to bring bounce into the mainstream. Tootie and Stef were dancing with Big Choo and Game Over before joining the Freedia family in 2010, making their debut at New York's Fun Fun Fun Fest. The duo shot to fame after teaming up with Mr. Ghetto in his "Wally World" video, and since then, they've been touring with Freedia throughout the US, Canada, Europe and Brazil.