A New Phaze for D.C.’s Queer Music Festival

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With LGBTQ fall events gearing up, the first weekend of September kicks off with a bang. Phazefest, D.C.’s Queer Music Festival is offering something for everyone — from drag kings to electro-pop bands. The weekend festival will showcase some of the best queer artists in the D.C. metropolitan area, as well as nationally.

“Phazefest is a weekend where we shine a spotlight on some super talented LGBTQ musicians and party like there is no tomorrow,” says co-founder Angela Lombardi.

The music festival originated in 2006 at Phase 1 located in southeast D.C. The venue is best known as the nation’s longest-running lesbian bar. Due to Phase 1’s temporary closing and Lombardi parting ways with the bar, she has now moved this year’s event to 9:30 Club and Black Cat.

Operating as “Phasefest” for the past eight years, Lombardi has decided to change the spelling and “do a play off of the original name as a nice ode to the festivals’ roots.”

“Having the opportunity to have a queer music festival at two of the best venues in the city is pretty epic. These are stages that have been graced by the likes of Dolly Parton, James Brown, Dave Grohl and pretty much every great rock & roller. What an honor for Phazefest to be given the chance to take that stage,” says Lombardi.

Friday’s line-up at 9:30 Club includes local artists Marcus Webb and Frankie & Betty, as well as headliner Kiyomi Valentine from the Real L Word. Guests can stick around after the show for a special #YASQUEEN dance party from 12 a.m. – 3 a.m.

Saturday includes performances by Company Calls, members of the DC Gurly Show, B. Steady, and Michelle Raymond, with Sick of Sarah closing out the show. The Black Cat encourages everyone to stay for the FANNYPACK dance party featuring DJ DeeDub.

DJ DeeDub hit the scene almost three years ago and is looking forward to playing different sets for each venue. “I am looking forward to making my debut at the 9:30 Club! It has been one of my long-term goals to spin there since I first started DJing. It’s a dream come true to play in the venue alongside some very talented bands in the queer community,” she says.

Also looking forward to the weekend festivities is Sick of Sarah drummer Jessica Forsythe (also known as Juggs). Formed in 2005 in Minneapolis, the band has been a staple of Phazefest for several years. “The crew at the Black Cat are always so sweet and put on a great event to support the LGBTQ community each year. We love being a part of the event, hanging out with our D.C. fans and of course getting our dance on after our show,” says Juggs.

“I think actively supporting queer artists and musicians is super important,” explains Lombardi. “Thankfully in D.C. queer artists are celebrated, but that isn’t the case everywhere. So the more presence queer music has, the better in the grand scheme of things.”

Phazefest takes place September 4 and 5 at 9:30 Club and Black Cat. For more information or to purchase tickets click here.

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Eboné Bell
Eboné is the Editor-in-Chief of Tagg Magazine. She is the illegitimate child of Oprah and Ellen...so it's only right that she continues their legacy in the media world.