Slaying shows in Yonkers and NYC with her husband and drag partner-in-crime Angel Elektra, this queen would like you to know that her moves may be fierce, but her T is sweet. Come get Made with Shay D’Pines!
Thotyssey: Hi Shay! How was your July 4th?
Shay D’Pines: Hey Jim! So, the 4th wasn’t interesting at all for me this year. I spent it working my day job, making sandwiches at Gourmet Garage…PARTY! I usually spend it out on the Island Of Fire for the Invasion of the Pines, but so sad not to be there this year
Bummer! Shay D’Pines was actually born during the Invasion a few years ago, right?
Yes! Two years, to be exact, and now there’s no stopping her!
We’ll get back to Ms. Shay in a minute, but first… where’s your hometown?
Well, I now live in Yonkers, but was raised in the Bronx and Born in North Carolina. so I guess you say I’m movin’ on up…literally!
Cool! What were you into growing up, as far as creative interests?
I’ve always been a “funny” person, saying jokes and just being the silly goose. I like to make people laugh…I like to laugh. Laughter goes a long way, especially these days when everything seems so serious.
I guess this President still has everyone on edge, right?
Yes, and he is loving every minute of it! I’m surprised he’s “still around.”
Your long-time companion,
husband and show partner Angel Elektra described first meeting you at a Twin Donut, back when you were a cute baby goth. Is that how you remember it?
Ha! Yes, that’s exactly how I recall it. I was slightly self-centered, but there was just something about Angel that drew me closer towards him, and things just grew from there. Love Is Love Is Love Is Love!
Aw! How long has it been, now?
We just made 18 years together, and three years married June 2nd.
Congratulations! What’s the key to living and loving while dragging together?
Well! My key to a long lasting relationship is to be as much of a giver as a receiver (errr). And communication: definitely talk shit out if you wanna have a long-lasting relationship.
Now, dragging together…whole different BALL game! We each have our own very different drag aesthetic, and also know not to take each other so serious when dragging together. The family that drags together, brags together!
You two enter a lot of the city’s weekly and monthly drag competitions together. Does it ever feel like you’re competing against each other? Or is it always like, if one of you wins, then you both win?
We have so much fun doing competitions and pageants together. It still is a competition, so it does get a lil’ “hairy.” But it does also bring out the best in us as well, so it’s always worth it. And believe it or not, neither one of has yet to win any competition! Runner up, yes, and Second Runner Up. And of course, the Walk of Shame on the Losers Board! But again, it always brings out the best–and some of our most creative–ideas.
You’ve definitely taken the skills you’ve learned from these competitions and pageants and really upped your drag over time.
Thanks Jim! It’s all about evolving, while keeping to my unique personality. I’m definitely not like most people, and have developed my own sense of drag.
And I also really admire the way you and Angel have hit the payment in Yonkers, and getting your own shows there in very unlikely places, like sports bars and restaurants. How much does it suck that there aren’t established queer venues in Westchester, even though the market is clearly there?
Bringing drag to Yonkers–it’s the one thing I said I wanted to do when I started doing it. There’s really no gay “community” at all, but millions of gay people who just don’t know where to go in Yonkers. So we tried to build and maintain a sense of community, one venue at a time.
Unfortunately, we made some enemies along the way, and the opportunity to accomplish this was almost defeated, However, you just can’t keep a good Ho’Down, and our shows out here in Yonkers do go on…just not as frequently.
You and Angel have a show coming up in Friday at Duo Tapas Bar there, for instance! That’s a monthly for you two, right?
Yes! [The next one’s on] Friday, July 14th at 9pm. Great ambiance, good food, boozy bevs and great music. We just basically walked in one day and spoke to the owner a lil’ bit about what we do, and he was all for it! He loves it, his staff loves it, and we have a great following that loves it. And that’s all we can really ask for. I appreciate all of it, and take none of it for granted!
Wonderful! And now y’all are conquering Manhattan as well, with a monthly show debuting at Rockbar next month!
We sure are, and I’m SO excited for this! We actually had our first show at Rockbar June 20th as a “one night only” type of thing. We had a great turnout, and everyone had a great time. So, [bar manager] Jason gladly welcomed us in to the Rockbar family, and now you can catch us every third Thursday of the month, 7pm(-ish)
start time, beginning July 20th!
Amazing! And I’m so happy and grateful to have you and Angel join the kinda ridiculously-huge roster of performers celebrating Thotyssey’s anniversary and my birthday, Night of 1000 Thots at Stonewall on July 15th! It’s a pretty cool lineup, I must say!
I am SO excited, thrilled, and HONORED to be a part of this insane lineup. Thank YOU for having us, and also for you being you. You literally bring the night it’s life with keeping everyone up to date with what’s going on in the nightlife, I couldn’t think of a better way to say Thank You than to dedicate to you a lovely performance! And even more special that we all get to celebrate your Umphteenth Birthday with you!
Gurl, I can’t wait! And how did you guess that I’m actually turning Umphteen!?
Umphteen is my lucky number!
Okay, is there anything else you wanna mention?
One final thing I’d like to finally get off my breasts: I COME IN PEACE! I know some readers may feel a particular way about who Shay D’Pines is, but I guarantee: if you really try to get to know me, you’ll love me…I promise!
The Shade of the Pines is a gentle place to be! Okay, final question: Given your name, which Golden Girl are you most like?
Yaaasss for this final question! As the saying goes: I am Dorothy in the streets and Blanche in the sheets! Oh, and I tend to be a lil’ Sophia in the mouth!
It’s the perfect woman! Thank you, Shay!
Shay D’Pines co-hosts “The Experience” monthly with Angel Elektra at Rockbar on third Thursdays (7pm), and on second Fridays at Duos Tapas Bar & Lounge in Yonkers (9pm). She’ll be part of the roster of performers at Night of 1000 Thots at Stonewall on Saturday, July 15th (6pm). Follow Shay on Facebook and Instagram.