March 23, 2024 BOVARD AUDITORIUM @ USC Words by Lawrence Mann, photos by A Rood Photography.

The stage was bathed in warm red lights; the equipment, the risers, wall hangings and monitors were wrapped in aluminum foil.  The setting gave a feel of low budget, campy and uniquely creative mind at work.  

For those uninitiated to CHRISTEENE, the stage name of Paul Soileau.  CHRISTEENE is a drag queen with a conscious.  She has a cryptic, yet comedic way of getting her agenda across and the audience was in total agreement.  Equal parts political, empowering, confrontational and show person, are words that describes CHRISTEENE, as well as the artist she paid tribute to this cool and cloudy evening.  

Check out the full gallery of photos from this night by A Rood Photography here.

Everything about this evening was eclectic.  The setting; USC’s Bovard Auditorium, the audience; dressed to the nines in what appeared to be proud acquisitions from an estate sale, the stage; as I mentioned earlier, but most importantly, the performers.  CHRISTEENE and her cohorts, affectionately named the Fukkn Band spent many hours perfecting this extravaganza for this U.S. premiere of their tribute to Sinead O’Conner’s debut album, The Lion and The Cobra.

They played the album in its entirety, however they shuffled the songs around a bit.  The band reported to their marks on the stage, while CHRISTEENE and her two dancers flocked to her side.  The three stood on risers wearing long draping dresses with what appeared to be a felt crown that extended down into a beard.  CHRISTEENE did her unique interpretation, as she did on all the songs this evening.  She chanted the spoken word intro that Enya had performed on the album.  It was haunting.  

Next up was a very close, but still unique version of Sinead’s first single, Mandinka.  The band nailed the rocking portions with heavy guitar, distorted sax and keys.  CHRISTEENE ran around the stage wearing sheer briefs that were missing the backside.  She turned around as much as possible to give everyone a full view.  She was also very fond of rubbing her crotch…all night!

Throughout the evening, CHRISTEENE spouted praise for the misunderstood Sinead, her take on current affairs and witty euphemisms.  For Jerusalem and Troy, CHRISTEENE was joined by Shannon Funchess of Light Asylum and Peaches respectively.  Both Shannon and Peaches added significantly to their respective songs. 

As the night drew to a close, the performance made me recall so many other artists: Courtney Love, Kembra Pfahler, Alice Cooper, Reagan from the Exorcist, Ann Magnuson, Lux Interior, Tim Curry, Big Freedia, Johanna Went and Newsom, Rosanna Arquette, Harvey Fierstein, Gypsies, Tramps & Thieves era Cher, Tom Waits, Matthew McConaughey, Devine and so many more.  

I was so happy to attend this event. The only downside, I can’t stop doing inappropriate CHRISTEENE impressions.  She would be so proud!

Set List:

Never Get Old


Just Like U Said It Would B

Jerusalem with Shannon Funchess


Troy with Peaches

I Want Your (Hands On Me)

Drink Before War

Just Call Me Joe


Fix My Dick (CHRISTEENE original)

Check out the full gallery of photos from this night by A Rood Photography here.

To submit an article an article or review, or to just say hello hit us at [email protected]

Also- check out the search feature in the upper right hand corner and search for your favorite artist, event, venue or genre. You’ll be surprised at what you find!

Check out the Live Music News and Facebook page for updates and announcements.