Well hello there Logan Hardcore! How are you doing this lovely late summer day?
I am doing well! Thank you so much for asking. A little overwhelmed with alot going on right now, but all in all I’m doing great.
Let’s jump right into it then. You did a post yesterday that was both shocking and not that shocking to people who have followed your career. But long term short, you’re not retiring as a drag artist per se but you’re certainly not making your drag the focal point of your life. How did this all come about for you?
It was a very ME post. I have lived my “career” on my own terms. I have always done things my way. I don’t play by the rules, I play by my rules. I have been the author of my story and I needed to continue to have that go on. I have a lot going on in my life. I have recently gone to college for the first time, studying substance abuse counseling. My husband and I have been in the adoption process for over a year. I had this feeling six months ago that it was time to take yet another step away from drag. I knew I would know when the perfect time was, and because of some stuff that has transpired I just knew now was the time. Like you said it is not retirement for good. But you won’t be able to catch me weekly ever again. It’s going to be a major change after fifteen years.
You mentioned in your post, Logan Hardcore was never supposed to become as big as she did. When did you realize that drag and performance was becoming a bigger part of your life than you had planned on when you started?
Fire Island. Fire Island and the notoriety that came from it was one of those moments that changed the course of my life. I was living somewhere where EVERYONE knew me, and there was a sense of celebrity that came with it for five months a year. I solidified a really loyal and stable group of supporters who have stayed loyal to me since 2008 when I had my first official season out there.
Can you explain to the people outside the NYC/ Fire Island bubble what the summer seasons are like out there, both as a drag performer and in general?
So Fire island is a little gay mecca about 2 hours travel from NYC. You take a train, a bus, and a boat to get to it. When you get there, there are no cars. I honest to god can tell you it’s a magical experience. It felt like The Wizard of Oz when things go from black and white to color for me the first time I went. It just felt like home. So as a performer out there I worked mostly weekends, so I would have a show Friday night, and party all night Friday, and then do afternoon shows at the pool Saturday and Sunday and then party all night. For many people it’s a place to go and just let loose. Now when I go, it’s a totally different place. I enjoy the beach, and the “beauty of the island”. It’s amazing to me that so many things exist on one small place.
How did you actually get your start in drag? What was your earliest exposure to the artform?
I was living in Prescott, Arizona. Myspace was big, and I knew I wanted to move out of Arizona to NYC. I kind of just naturally friended a lot of the queens. Acid Betty and Epiphany were two people I considered friends before even moving here. So Myspace was most likely my first major exposure. I knew of RuPaul. I knew of Bunny (visually). I knew that there was something powerful in the art and I wanted to be a part of it.
Bunny meaning Bugs or Lady?
Lady!! Aren’t they the same?
Just checking! So you’ve spent a lot of time in New York City’s drag scene, even before the big national Drag Race boom. What would you say has changed the most over your time in the scene?
It’s not what it was. I sound ninety five years old when I say that, but I was talking to my sister Jada Valenciaga about this yesterday. There is no “Community” any more. There’s fake community and girls that say the right thing but do the wrong. People who BEG you to not work places, but don’t support you when you move venues. I remember when I started. Bianca Del Rio, me, Jada, Bootsie Lefaris, we were just a little gang of girls who had fun EVERY night we were out. I don’t see it any more. I don’t feel it, that’s for damn sure. It’s over-saturated and girls are not doing it for the right reason. They want a piece of the pie, they don’t want to sit at the table.
“I don’t see it anymore. I don’t feel it, that’s for damn sure. It’s over-saturated and girls are not doing it for the right reason. They want a piece of the pie, they don’t want to sit at the table.”-Logan Hardcore
Do you think that feeling can ever be recaptured or has that ship sailed with so much potential fame and money on the table??
I think it’s sailed. I am so happy i got to ride the wave I did. We did drag for fucking fun. To go out and get blasted. It wasn’t the cool thing. We were still looked down upon, but we didn’t care. We loved what we were doing.
Did you ever have the desire to be on television with your drag?
I don’t. I did for a really long time. My best friend Bianca got on and won Drag Race. I became close with girls like Willam and had a moment with Alyssa Edwards where we were close and she was trying to help get me on. It never panned out. I’m not moldable. You won’t produce me, I didn’t see it then, but I know now that it all worked out for the best.
Thus far, what would you say has been the pinnacle of your career, a peak performance, an amazing moment….the point you are going to look back on with the most pride twenty years from now?
As of today, i would say that it was my final poolside performance at the Ice Palace on fire island. I put literal blood sweat and tears into that show. To do that with my best friend Brenda Dharling by my side, and feel the love and adoration was a feeling I will never forget, although I have a feeling this final performance is going to rival it lol.
So let’s talk about your plans to wrap up this chapter of your career! You’re planning a show entitled, “Farewell…..for now” at Playhouse on September 13th. Can you share a little bit of what you have planned for that night?
It’s really hard to explain how this is mentally for me as a performer and the way I work. I have been planning my finale show since my first show. That’s throughout my career moments that I know will garnish a change in the atmosphere…those songs will be performed. Songs that I am VERY well known for doing, and the finale song will be the song that has seen me through the good, bad and ugly. There will be tears, I will be ugly crying, it’s going to be a lot.
Do you think it will feel cathartic when you’re done? Happy, sad, some combination of everything?
I think I’m going to feel a release of energy that I have never felt before. The stage is somewhere very safe and sacred to me. I have shared my life entirely on the stage. My addiction struggles, my mom dying, my dad being sick…I’ve done it all on stage…openly and honestly…so to end that…it’s going to really be something I don’t think I can fully brace for.
That’s a perfect segue to my next question. You’ve experienced so much personally in your time, loss and success. You’ve gotten married, you’ve gone back to school. That schooling is something very personal to you because it relates to recovery. How difficult is it to remain sober in nightlife where handing someone a shot is the equivalent of saying hello? What can we do to make nightlife a more welcoming place to people in recovery?
Yes, I have shared a lot and it was worth every moment. Trust me it hasn’t always been rainbows, people didn’t like me during covid lol. I don’t find staying sober in nightlife hard at all. But I was really done. I hit a point where it was one road or the other and there was no inbetween. I chose to get sober. I have to be honest and it doesn’t sound great, when I feel like I may want to drink or use again, I look around. People are messes. Bloated, slurring, thinking they are so fierce…it’s sad. THAT keeps me sober. Nightlife needs to start with shit as simple as a mocktail menu. You have 4952 items on the bar menu, but we have water, seltzer or redbull. There are SO many brands making alcohol free spirits, just do the work. Bar owners, do the fucking work.
You’ve also parlayed this experience into your podcast, Hardcore SobrieTEA. You’ve had famous friends on including Bob the Drag Queen, Marti Gould Cummings and Pixie Aventura. What was your mindset when you created this podcast? Was it to give yourself a forum to talk about recovery issues or were you looking to create a safe space for other people in the community who were going through similar experiences?
I originally had a podcast called Hardcore HonesTEA where i just talked shit every week. But in that, I was always talking about recovery, and it was in that moment I realized that this is what I’m here for. I am meant to have these conversations and help this community. So it has taken a back seat until i finish out this performance chapter, but once I am done with that I have a list of about 20+ guests that I would like to get on to talk. Recovery is different for everyone, and I know that if I had these stories to hear when I was struggling it may have really helped.
And you plan to continue even as nightlife becomes a smaller part of your life?
Absolutely. I think the conversations need to be had, and I am happy to have them. I may be stepping out of the spotlight, but it’ll take a while for my name to do the same. *Laughs*
So each interview, I do a short answer, the first thing that comes to mind segment. Are you game for……**cue special effects** THE LIGHTNING ROUND?
LOVE THIS, yes!
Must have makeup item?
Eyelashes. Y’all look like MEN without them.
4 AM post show food craving?
El Jalapeno taco truck in the West Village.
The worst part of drag?
My feet are forever fucked up.
The best part of drag?
The love of an audience is something you can’t recreate.
Most surprising thing about you that people might not know?
I’m actually the best friend you could ever have. If I got you, I GOT YOU. But I am very protective of myself and who I allow in.
Drag artist you would pay the most to see?
I would love to see a FULL show with the legends. Bunny, Varla Jean Merman, Coco Peru, Sherry Vine, Jackie Beat…the list goes on and on but i’d love to see a huge production with them!
Streaming Binge recommendation?
Echos on Netflix was really wild.
Disney character you relate to the most?
Last movie to make you cry?
Omg, me and my husband watched a movie about adoption and we were both sobbing. I can’t remember the name…god dammit.
In the movie of your life, who plays you?
Final question, most embarrassing song on your phone?
Most embarrassing song on my phone…..i mean nothing is truly embarrassing but the too fat polka is pretty wild.
Well, looks like you passed the Lightning Round with flying colors!
So normally this is when I ask what’s left on your drag bucket list but let me reboot this question. What’s on your bucket list for you personally moving beyond drag?
A baby and finally just relaxing. I have spent 15 years always moving into what’s next. I just want to relax and enjoy this period of my life. I am very blessed and live a beautiful life, I want to enjoy it.
You say you would like a baby, could you share a little bit about you and your husband’s experiences in that journey so far?
We originally started the process to foster. That just wasn’t right for our family. We want a baby to be ours, and selfishly i cant foster a child and want them to return to their birth parent. So we began the long, exhaustive, and expensive journey of private adoption. We had one failed match and that sent us on a wild roller coaster ride of emotions and we chose to continue. I don’t want to say anything too personal but I truly believe that the wait will have been worth it when the time comes.
So besides subscribing to your podcast and being at Playhouse on the 13th, how can people keep up with you on the interwebs?
@loganxhardcore on instagram is the best place to see what is going down and when and if I pop up again
Well my dear, we have just about reached the end of our time together but I want to congratulate you on an amazing, and truly authentic career. And as we both know, you never say never in the business so we’ll see what the future holds. In the meantime though, can you share some final words of wisdom for the WERRRK. com Universe before we go?
Thank you so much for having me to talk my truth! My final words would be, know your worth, don’t settle, and remember who the fuck you are.