“Being my authentic self—that is, openly gay—frees me to be more creative! I believe I have a duty to be visible.”

These heartfelt sentiments come from the openly gay, androgynous African-American musician and Baltimore native Crisean (pronounced “Cris-Shawn”), 27, who was a guest last year on The Wyatt O’Brian Evans Show, my radio program which airs on PapiChuloRADIO.com. In the next step in his rising career, this innovative performer made the move to NYC last year. I wanted to see how things were going.

A March 2014 article by Steve Charing said, “an independent artist with an infusion of pop, dance and soul/R&B, Crisean had been singing Disney songs around the house and putting on shows for family members since the age of 8…. He has been inspired by such contemporary artists as Beyonce, Britney Spears and Usher. ‘That’s when I fell in love with Soul Music and legendary icons such as Aretha Franklin, Marvin Gaye and Elvis Presley,’ [Crisean] explains.”

I asked Crisean to expound on his statement about being his authentic self. “Certainly! Being your authentic self definitely frees you to be more creative. It truly is an emotional and psychological drain and burden hiding who you really are.”

Next, Crisean chatted about his move to the Big Apple. “NYC has been exciting, scary and such a learning experience! I’ve been setting up meetings with incredible artists to collaborate with on various projects for 2015.” Then he added, with just a tinge of wistfulness, “ I will admit that I miss Baltimore more than I thought I would! [Pause.] But now I have two homes, which is kind of amazing.”

So, just what does the musician have on tap for the New Year? “I have so many things planned for 2015,” he grinned. “I’m not going to give them all away, but I am working on my album entitled, Sound Approved.

Crisean continued, “I can tell you that I have a performance coming up for “Hyper Gender,” a burlesque/variety show in February that I’m super excited about! I haven’t thought about what the performance will be like, but I cannot wait to see the outcome.”

You can follow Crisean at Facebook.com/criseanmusic, YouTube.com/unobtainablecrisean, Twitter.com/criseanofficial and Instagram.com/criseanofficial.

Gay Life February 2015

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