Bridget Everett is a self-described “singer with tits for days.” And while that’s accurate, it doesn’t even begin to describe the New York-based cabaret singer/comedian’s unique act. Most people are probably most familiar with Everett from her guest performances on Comedy Central’s Inside Amy Schumer, which give viewers just a taste of her highly physical, often raunchy, but always entertaining act. We caught up with Everett before her stop in town on Aug. 27 at Oberon, the proceeds of which benefit Provincetown’s Afterglow Festival.
Sort of like a punk rock cabaret, with an unhinged sexual bent. But with the voice of an angel. [Laughs]
I have these rowdy audiences in New York, and they just sort of kept letting me go further and further, and I just sort of kept exploring my limits, until I got to [be] this untamed wildebeest. [Laughs] I got to a place where I felt like excited about what I was doing, and comfortable, but its definitely pretty far out there—but still with a tender underbelly.
I love everybody from Lucille Ball to Carol Burnett, to Debbie Harry to Bette Midler, to Millie Jackson to Tina Turner. Those are some of the ones off the top of my head. Patti LuPone, she’s great. Lisa Lampanelli. Those are definitely all people that I just adore watching.
My friend Larry Krone makes all my dresses. We call it the House Of Larréon. The only clothes that I could find that would really fit me, and were good for performance, were on the big girl floor at Macy’s and would be, like, House of Deréon and Kimora Lee Simmons stuff. I definitely embraced my body and he wanted to do something that showcased it in a very Halston, ‘70s-esque way. It’s sort of about letting the body sing and not just the voice.
[Laughs] I mean, nightly.
Early on, the way that I got into not being bothered by partial nudity is that I used to sing this song called “Can Hole,” and I would sort of take my pants down and show a little bit of my butt. But one day my pants just fell off completely, and I just kept singing my song and I was like, “Oh! This is fine, it’s all great.” So I went with it and I’ve been going with it ever since.
So you’re a crusader for positive body image?
Yeah, I mean, body positivity across the board. I feel comfortable in my own skin, and I definitely feel sexy and empowered on stage, and I hope that other people see that and get excited by that. Because they should feel empowered a little bit. I mean my mission is not to say, “Here’s my mission statement: Love your body,” but it definitely is to love yourself, and your body is a big part of that.
I used to list my name as Boozy Banger on stage. I like that because it sort of captures what I do on stage. But yeah, I’m definitely more reserved in real life.
I usually have happy hour in the dressing room because I have really bad stage fright, so a couple nips helps me get the circulation back in my legs. Chardonnay, always chardonnay.
It started out pretty gay and queer-based. But now it’s really everybody. Because I started at the clubs in New York, and that’s just sort of who’s coming in, but then I started working with Amy Schumer a lot, and there are a lot of young straight girls at her shows, and they really get fired up. And then, just this past weekend there was a 70-year-old Chinese couple, and they were singing “What I Gotta Do to Get That Dick in My Mouth?”! So my target audience is anybody who is down to see something that they never thought would happen…happen.
Oh sure, every now and again I’ll get a walk out, but, for me, that’s better. I would rather have people be so fired up and love it, or just be like, “Oh shit, I can’t deal with this,” than have people go, “That was a pleasant evening.” That’s not my intention. I want people to really feel something, because I really feel something, and I want it to be something that the audience and I are both in together. The further they’re willing to go, the further I’m willing to go. If you don’t want to be there, I won’t be offended if you leave.
Well, it’s like a party. If you don’t want to be a part of this party, then that’s cool. Just go do something else, but at this party, there’s going to be some titties, some motor-boating. But it can’t all be chicks and dicks all the time. I also like to talk about things that mean something to me.
We met in Montreal, at Just for Laughs. Usually at those kinds of things I just hide in my hotel room. I get all freaked out. But she’s much more comfortable in those environments so she was like, “Oh come on. Come down with me.” And we’d go to the parties and we just hit it off. She’s super cool. We have a lot in common. We both like chardonnay.
I’m so bad at coming up with jokes. I can’t think of anything on the spot, but Amy definitely comes up with some shit that really makes me laugh.
Oh, my mom used to say this thing, “motherfucker shitter-asser.” And I think that’s really funny. When we were growing up we weren’t allowed to say “stupid” in the house, but you could say “motherfucker shitter-asser.” I just think it’s really funny.