September 28, 2023

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Phoebe Bridgers, Lucy Dacus & Julien Baker Wear Drag at Nashville Boygenius Show: ‘F–k Bill Lee’

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Phoebe Bridgers, Lucy Dacus & Julien Baker Wear Drag at Nashville Boygenius Show: ‘F–k Bill Lee’

In protest of the recent influx in anti-LGBTQ bills passed in Tennessee, Phoebe Bridgers, Lucy Dacus and Julien Baker dressed in flamboyant drag queen-inspired looks at their Boygenius concert in Nashville Sunday (June 25) — where they also led the crowd in a “F–k Bill Lee” chant aimed at the state’s polarizing governor.

As the indie rock supergroup kicked off the show — which happened to be held during the city’s Pride Month celebrations — ecstatic screams could be heard throughout the Great Lawn in Centennial Park upon the crowd’s realization that “The Boys” had drastically departed from their usual suit and tie stage uniforms. With each of them wearing colorful, over-the-top makeup, Bridgers took the stage in a spider-webbed leotard and teased-to-the-heavens hair, Dacus in a bejeweled Gogo dress with a red leather harness and Baker in a purple Elvis-esque suit.

Even the band’s crew looked dashing in gender-bending clothing, with both a cameraman and a male stagehand sporting sundresses.

Later, Baker — whose home state is Tennessee — paused the show to take aim at Gov. Lee, who earlier this year signed controversial laws banning minors from receiving gender-affirming care and preventing drag queens from performing in certain public spaces. “Today I’m so grateful for my life, not because I get to stand onstage with my best friends … but because I’m content with the person that I am,” she said. “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 to make those people f–k off,” the musician continued. “I would like you to scream so loud that Gov. Lee can hear you.”

“Can we say ‘F–k Bill Lee’ on three?” Bridgers then proposed, before leading a countdown that ended with thousands of voices screaming “F–k Bill Lee!”

Boygenius was formed in 2018 by the three soloists, each of whom identifies as queer. Days before releasing their debut album as a group, The Record, in March, Bridgers, Dacus and Baker spoke out against Tennessee’s discriminatory legislation in an interview with Them.

“The government being actually actively trying to kill the coolest people is something I think about every day,” Bridgers told the publication at the time. “It’s so overwhelming how different the world would be if the AIDS epidemic had never happened. It’s so overwhelming to me, to my exact world, everything that I value. And –”

“All the lost potential,” Dacus added.

“If all of the David Wojnarowiczes and Leslie Feinbergs of the world did all of that suffering for me not to live in a world where I can be so f–king gay on a big stage and have a whole bunch of other gay people here for me and it’d be joy, then it was in vain,” Baker agreed in the interview. “The joy is the living amends that you do for your community as a performer.”

See photos and videos of Boygenius in drag below:

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