Interview: Music Artist Robert Beauty Garcia

Finding and showcasing local talent wherever I go has become a real passion of mine lately. The prospect that I may be a small stepping stone in gaining exposure for somebody else’s journey to prestige and success fuels my creative writing efforts and makes writing this blog all the more worthwhile for me. One recent find of mine is the extremely talented and gender non-conforming R&B singer Robert Beauty Garcia from Brooklyn New York. At only 24 years old, Robert has amassed quite a following that anxiously awaits his announcements of personal shows on his social media accounts. Garcia’s soulful and resonant voice coupled with the personal nature of the lyrics that he himself writes (often on train rides the artist mentioned) connect his audience with the universally shared feelings of yearning for love and the desire to be seen and accepted as we are. I was fortunate enough to recently be present for one of Garcia’s recording sessions, and while he is known for his crooning, mournful ballads there were some very uptempo hard edge songs that this author really vibed with. So, without further ado I introduce you to the popular New York artist Robert Beauty Garcia.

Me: How important is it for you to write your own songs, and what are some of the messages you want to get across to your fans?
Robert: It’s very important to me to write my own music because my story can’t be told better by some one other than me. When it comes to the message, I honestly want people to understand that I sing more about my personal journey and becoming who I am today. Of course that involves my gender fluidity but it also involves my love stories. I’ve seen pain, I’ve seen hurt, and I’ve been in love and fallen out of love. I also want to motivate people as well, and when I write about personal experiences or about my journey I say things that I wish people said to me when I was down or “struggling.” At the end of the day I really want everyone to relate to what they feel we have in common, be it my life style or my history.
M: What is it like for you being a struggling artist in New York City? How do you stay motivated?
R: Well I honestly don’t consider my self a struggling artist I like to say that I’m working just as hard as any other artist in NYC to make my dreams come true. How I keep motivated is by Continuing to write music and continually trying to elevate my self as a musician. Also, being a makeup artist makes that process easier because I have something that allows me to be creative while my other musical dreams are coming true.
M: Who are some of your musical inspirations?
R: My musical inspirations have always been Grace Jones and Prince because of their androgynous visuals. Their existence shows that there is a place for me in this industry. I can’t forget Mariah Carey either. I am such a big fan of hers not only because of her music, but also her way of not letting society make her evolve in a way that she doesn’t want to. She evolves herself on her own, and I feel like her music shows that whether people like it or not. I’ve had all her albums and they all have a different take on her original sound.
M: You are known as much for your music as your genderless personal style. What is gender fluidity mean to you personally and in your music?

R: I’m known for being an artist. So whether it’s my makeup artistry , my voice, or even my gender fluid life I’ve always wanted to inspire people by being who I am so that every one knows that they can be themselves and love themselves for who they are.
I define Gender fluid as a person who doesn’t really associate with or stick to one gender. I love to be male and sometimes I love to be female. I love to push society’s views on what they believe genders should look like and show that there is nothing wrong with wanting to embrace your masculine and feminine traits. It doesn’t make you gay or anything, it makes you human and it makes you courageous cause you choose to live in your own truth. In my music I love that I can tell my story through my lyrics looking at both spectrums male and female. It creates a story where more people can relate because we all go through tough times no matter what we look like.

M: Do you model your personal style after anybody?
R: I don’t model my personal style after any one because they aren’t yet too many self proclaimed gender fluid people out there. The fear of confusing people is what holds us back some times. I will say that jaden smith being a gender fluid model is beautiful and I hope as more people come forward we can inspire today’s youth. Sometimes we as community really want to be in between, and not all of us want to choose a side. why choose when you can have both?
M: Since there are not many role models for genderfluid and gender non-conforming kids, do you see yourself filling that role?
R: I definitely see myself filling that role. I have a story and I believe that story can motivate everyone not just gender fluid kids. But the fact that that’s who I am, and that I can encourage them means the world to me, because I know that in my experience I wasn’t truly happy till I felt comfortable enough being myself. We should all live life to the fullest, and that includes fulfilling who we are and how we feel inside.
M: Have you ever been harassed because of how you present yourself? How do you deal with the ignorance and hate?
R: I have. I honestly use to take it hard cause I never understood why people where so bothered by me. I lived my life never caring about what the next person was doing so I felt like every one else was the same. How I handle it now is, I either educate the person or I walk away. I learned to choose my battles and it’s not a battle when I’m defending who I am, because that’s something that no matter what or who has a problem with me that identity won’t change so why tackle it? I believe that eventually people will embrace it and see that it’s no different from anybody else.
M: Before we go, are there any upcoming shows or projects that you would like to promote?
Omg yes yes yes. I am truly excited to announce that I will be having a headlining show at the duplex on Christopher street on June 16. Tickets are being sold on my website at http://www.robertbeautygarcia.com. This will be an amazing opportunity to meet me first hand and truly take a ride with me on my journey. My music is so personal it tells my story and I’m excited to let all my beaudettes in with no filter. (See flyer below for more details)

I want to personally thank Robert again for being such a genuine and open person, and for doing this amazing interview with me. If you’re interested in listening to Robert’s music he just released a new song and video with Didier Entertainment that is titled “You Don’t Have To Wait” and you can watch the video here. Please feel free to subscribe to his social media pages as well as this blog for more artistic work to come! Thanks for reading everybody!

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A Fall Fête: A Review of My Favorite F/W 2016 Shows

For the Fall 2016 fashion shows there was three major standout trends I’ll refer to as the three “F’s”, which stand for Fur, Fringe, and Fearlessness. Fur (real or imaginary) being a longtime staple of this time of year, was used more as an accent on skirts or sleeves rather then its normal role as a full-blown coat. Fringe was used in surprising new ways, such as the rows of Rococo style braided tassels in several offerings from the Balmain show. Finally, fearlessness could be observed in variety of ways throughout the numerous fall shows. From the all-black model lineups and political statements at Zac Posen that caused such a stir, to Lady Gaga pounding the runway for Marc Jacobs ready-to-wear line, to the sheer diversity of looks presented across the board this Fall was without a doubt the beginnings of a new era for the fashion world. Building on that excitement and change, Sarah Burton put all three F’s on full display in her collection for Alexander McQueen’s runway show.
Alexander McQueen: There was quite a bit of juxtaposition in Burton’s latest collection between hard and soft. This delicate dance was more than appropriate for a time of year that normally boasts not only blistering winds and shivering bodies but also untouched blankets of pristine snow and silently breathtaking landscapes. Burton chose to open the show by showcasing some of the harder elements including oversized overcoats that were asymetrically lined with fur on the lapels, leather dresses with strong rounded shoulders, and short frilled looks that had bondage inspired necklines. All of these looks were outfitted with emoji-like embellishments or prints (such as butterflies, lips, and birds) that only Burton could give a classy and muted edge to. The racy boudoir theme only got more amplified as a smattering of sheer, lacy baby-doll dresses and gowns made their way down the catwalk as well as several pairs of seperates featuring simple lace bras, stark long overcoats, and dress pants that had buckles attached to the ankles and thighs furthering the S&M theme. Some of the dresses had ruffles, many had elements of leather which took a more interesting turn when applied to some very unique bustiers. Towards the end of the show, a set of entirely sheer gowns were shown the most successful of which had long flowing capes featuring space motifs, and the least flattering showing the models bare chests and panties with lots of overdone and cartoonish embellishments. The show closed out with a series of beaded and feathered floor-length gowns that were swallowed by coats that looked like the models had rolled out of bed with their comforters still wrapped around them. Overall, Burton’s collection provided us with the very dreamlike avant garde qualities that this storied house is known for all while maintining the much more wearable design aesthetic that Burton has been known for since she took the helm.


Balmain: Olivier Rousteing’s sensibilities have always been very modern and very French, so the concept of both starting and ending his fashion show with one of the daughters of the most famous families in the world played perfectly into both of these desires. Perhaps the most notable feature of this particular collection was the color palette which never strayed far from the soft baby pinks and serenity blues that actually are the colors of the year. The standard uniform of Balmain that Rousteing has created mostly consists of smoking jackets with intricate filigree work, braided tassels that hang from blouses and skirts in abundance, and overall a very French sense of what wearability truly means. While this colection was in no way revolutionary by Balmain’s standards it did offer up some unique distinctions such as the addition of fur to the sides of skirts or used as sleeves in one look. Ruffles, also a staple of the label under Olivier’s guidance, abounded as embellishments to the sides of sheer high-waisted pants or as Elizabethan inspired tops. Sheer patterned leggings, thigh-high heels, wide belts and chokers also ruled the day and made appearances throughout the 60 looks presented. The only real misses came when Rousteing side-tracked away from the established colors of the other looks and ventured into a camo-green for two outfits that looked blantantly out of place with the rest of the show. This small misstep aside, perhaps the most innovative departure in this particular show was the pink corset-cum-skirt that was paired with a robin’s egg blue shearling coat and turtleneck. This technique also showed up in looks worn by Jourdan Dunn as well as Kendall Jenner’s finale dress which were, you guessed it, as fearlessly chic as their designer.


Jonathan Simkhai: After celebrating the collections of two houses that have had both long and illustrious careers, I thought I would turn the spotlight on the fresh and untested face of Jonathan Simkhai’s new eponymous label. A recent participant of the Vogue Fashion Fund/CFDA Awards and (spoiler alert for Amazon watchers) cowinner of the $300,000 prize, Simkhai is best known for his overtly feminine cocktail dresses that often pair geometric designs with lacy exteriors. If his most recent offering coming off of this massive win (an honor that has been shared in the past by such legends as Alexander Wang and Joseph Altuzarra) is any indication of what’s to come then he may be in it for the long haul. Many of the silhouettes in this collection ranged from long and flared at the bottom to long and tightly gathered, and many were paired with some form of knitwear. The first few looks came in a crisp white, most with fur and in one case the hem of a dress was edged in lamb’s wool. This set the tone for a collection that had a wide range of different types of animal fur or at least what passed for it as one dresses fringe closely resembled mole-hair. Huge over-sized furs did seem a little bulky compared to the airiness of the rest of the collection, but one white fur paired nicely with a pair of fringed pants and saved them from becoming too cumbersome. Halfway through the show we got a taste of the geometric cut-outs that Simkhai is known for which showed up on several dresses and even a blazer, but which was best represented by a calf-length dress that was outlined by a woolen border. The finale looks were a steady stream of black, blue, and white lazer-cut dresses and separates that one can easily imagine could be worn to any awards show. Looking at the collection one can really tell that this young man was absolutely the right person for Vogue and the CFDA to put their trust in, and I sincerely look forward to seeing what Simkhai creates for us in the future because his at least is certainly bright.