boygenius Perform in Drag at Nashville Concert, Lead "Fuck Bill Lee" Chant

I'm not gay, but $20 is $20

Photo via @noahb6261 on YouTube

BY Megan LaPierrePublished Jun 27, 2023

boygenius will be boygenius. For the final show in the RE:Set concert series (and last show before their tour picks up again in July) in Nashville, the supergroup traded in their usual scholastic-inspired garb to don drag and likewise drag Tennessee governor Bill Lee.

Julien Baker, Phoebe Bridgers and Lucy Dacus — to be known henceforth as Shenida Tums, Queef Urban and Lucille Balls, respectively — took a stand against the anti-LGBTQA2S+ legislation that Republican Lee was instrumental in advancing this year. It bans "adult cabaret" performances in public spaces where children could be present, as well as gender-affirming healthcare for adolescents. Earlier this month, a judge finally ruled the anti-drag law "unconstitutional."

Drawing style inspiration from Elvis Presley, Dolly Parton and Amy Winehouse, the boys performed their songs from the record with personal record-setting amounts of makeup on their faces, joining the ranks of King Gizzard & the Lizard WizardYo La TengoAllison RussellOrville Peck and the B-52s. (But again, not Tool.) Even some of their crew, like camera operators and guitar techs, wore dresses in support.

"Today I'm so grateful for my life, not because I get to stand on stage with my best friends … but because I'm content with the person that I am," Tennessee native Baker told the crowd. "I have a lot of anger for the people that have made me feel small, and feel erased."

"And I've found it's a really powerful and humiliating tool for making those people fuck off," she continued. "I would like you to scream so loud that Governor Bill Lee can hear you."

With middle fingers to the sky, everyone chanted, "Fuck Bill Lee," and it was a beautiful.

See clips and photos from the big-haired boys' performance below, and read our review of their recent Toronto show.
@emuhorseman julien feeling greatful tonight being back in TN while also telling gov bill lee to f*uck off <3 #boygenius #julienbaker #lucydacus #phoebebridgers #tennesseedragbill ♬ original sound - Emma
@kiwifrt the boys introducing their drag names #boygenius #phoebebridgers #julienbaker #lucydacus ♬ original sound - bryar 🌷

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