The world of drag is all-encompassing, combining fashion, performance and music to create a fabulous, over-the-top persona.
Many drag queens are musicians in their own right, writing songs and releasing hit albums.
Whether they gained popularity on a show such as RuPaul’s Drag Race or garnered a fanbase thanks to the internet, there’s no shortage of alt drag queens who are pushing boundaries and making truly kickass music.
We decided to highlight 10 alt drag musicians who you need to add to your playlist. You can check those out below.
Adore Delano, aka AltPress’ No. 358 cover star, has been a scene queen since first appearing on RuPaul’s Drag Race in 2014. Like many drag queens, Delano’s early music falls in the dance/electronic realm but with an undeniable punk-rock spin. Her 2017 album, Whatever, is guitar-heavy with rock ballads and catchy pop-punk tracks such as “27 Club” or “Princess Cut.”
Kameron Michaels might have made a name for herself for being the ultimate Cher lookalike, but her music is definitely more influenced by electronic and alternative musicians. Her 2019 anthem “Freedom” has a pop-punk edge with an electronic twist, and it’s all about being unapologetically yourself.
KATYA‘s EP Vampire Fitness is the dark and brooding soundtrack that vampires probably would play at a late-night gym. The album is edgy and in your face, with KATYA performing in both English and Portuguese throughout the tracklist.
Another RuPaul alum turned musician, Sharon Needles is an electro-pop master. Songs such as “Dirty Diaper” or “666” have a dark edge but still make you want to dance. However, “Dracula” sounds like it could be performed by Fall Out Boy.
While Jinkx Monsoon‘s style is influenced by cabaret, show tunes and big band, she definitely has a few alt tracks in her discography. Her cover of Radiohead‘s “Creep” is as haunting as it is beautiful. There’s also her anthemic ballad “This Town,” with its steady drumbeat and apathetic attitude.
Alaska Thunderfuck is the ultimate no-fucks-given queen with an undeniable comedic edge to her music. Her song “The T” with Delano is a dark, gritty rap track that’s everything people love about Thunderfuck. And her morbid video for “Your Makeup Is Terrible” is a wild ride you can’t stop watching, set to a catchy electronic beat.
Aja‘s been paving the way for drag hip-hop artists with tracks such as “Brujería” and “Crossbow.” Their style seemingly takes influence from edgy SoundCloud rap but with complex dance beats that put a unique stamp on every song.
Speaking of drag rap, the Vixen‘s 2020 album, Commercial Break, is an innovation in dark, punkish hip-hop. Songs such as “Give A Bitch A Break” and “Tea Party” are the epitome of her style—gritty, fast and danceable.
Shea Couleé is giving us electro-indie meets R&B with an almost emo vibe with their songs. Tracks such as “Gasoline” and “Ride” are undeniably atmospheric, with the dreamy instrumentals and vocals blending together as one.