Workin' All Night with Sleazy McQueen
December 13, 2007
Beneath the suave exterior of a green lucha libre mask, Sleazy McQueen is hiding a secret.
"I have been working with some really talented vocalists recently," the DJ/producer said during an interview at his studio in Orlando, Fla. "I am on a mission to make house music for people that don't like house music."
Whether he's donning his "Sleazy" moniker on the decks or producing his tracks under the likes of "Tony the Pony," Laurin McQueen Fedora is in the business of making seriously good house music without taking the scene too seriously.
It's often that such business includes a lucha libre mask and a few scantily clad limbs.
Miami's 2007 Winter Music Conference saw Sleazy (literally) tackle local Milwaukee heads in the lobby of the seminal Whitelaw Hotel, wearing little else besides a pair of shiny, purple track shorts and his distinctive wrestling mask. Now, with the depths of winter burrowing in place, Sleazy McQueen ventures to the north for a rematch—and to bring Milwaukee a funked-up taste of the underground that often strays from the city's cold weather woes.
Noise took a moment to chart the uncharted imagination of Laurin
McQueen Fedora and find out if he's really been "Workin' All Night."
Laurin Fedora—is that your real name?
Yes, Laurin McQueen Fedora; the "Sleazy" was added eight years ago when I worked at Ben & Jerry's and flirted with a lot of customers. I have lived up to the adjective since then more than I could have ever imagined.
While you are a self-proclaimed house DJ/producer, what other influences are heard in your sound? What can audiences expect to hear at your show on Saturday?
My DJ style and production style are totally different beasts. The best way to describe my sets is to say they're "house-party house." Maybe things are different in Milwaukee, but I've always loved house parties 'cause you can cross genres to find whatever rocks the hardest ... even if that means playing some Michael McDonald.
What is the story behind the lucha libre mask you are known to wear?
I bought my mask in Tijuana a few years back and hid it like a dirty secret until I was called upon to DJ at Q-bam (Q-Burns Abstract Message) and Atnarko's bimonthly (event), Club Queso. My mask and I found a home in Orlando shortly thereafter. Now, I act as the late-night entertainment; I come out at about 1 a.m. in a mask and outfit matching the theme of the night … (I) run around, get in bar fights … These shenanigans are usually reserved for Orlando though, as most of them find me in scant clothes and I am afraid of your Midwestern winters.
In the past year, you've put out quite a few remixes and original tracks. Which ones have you been most excited about? Will we hear some of said goodies on Saturday?
Most excited: "Workin' All Night," my track on the DAE sampler, and "Too Much Rainy Days" were all wicked releases for me.
What was your creative inspiration behind "Workin' All Night?"
"Workin' All Night" was my jam. Last March, 2006, I called in my buddy, Hugh (The Nasty Fruits), for a disco session. I had a really rigged recording setup and he had to keep singing or making noise, otherwise it would stop recording. We had a funny studio interaction; I would hold up old funk and disco records for immediate ad-libbed lyrical inspiration and he would sing the first thing that came to mind. I think the line itself was inspired by the gatefold picture of the Rick James LP with "Cold Blooded" on it … find it, look and you'll understand.
Believe it or not, some have compared Orlando's underground club scene to Milwaukee's. Does that make you any more excited for your Brew Town debut?
You have beer, we have Disney, what up? I am totally stoked about Three—I hear wonderful things from people who can't remember anything.
Sleazy McQueen makes his Milwaukee debut for Boompty on Saturday, Dec. 15, at Three (722 N. Milwaukee St.). The Festivus celebration also welcomes Chicago house battery Jeuce (Jolby and Josh Harrell) to the lineup. Doors open at 9 p.m. No cover charge.