A longtime champion of New York nightlife–particularly among the close-knit gay Asian community–Liam Yung has been a host, promoter, producer and entertainment director in the scene. And this weekend, he’ll be embarking on a special enterprise… with Thotyssey!
Thotyssey: Hi Liam! How’s your summer?
Liam Yung: Hello Jimmy! It is been fun so far.
July and August are the slow months for nightlife, because all the gays are on Fire Island or traveling somewhere… or just staying home with the AC on! Are you still finding cool parties to go to?
After hours seem to be becoming popular again… I am too old for those, lol. I did a party at No Aloha not long ago, it’s a fun space!
Yes, it is a beautiful space for an after hours; most of time they are usually in a warehouse. [No Aloha] is is two floors with beautiful decors. Every bathroom has different theme; two of its owners are women.
So a little background on you: where’s your hometown?
I am a born and raised Brooklynite; I love New York and love showing visitors my favorite spots.
How did you get into nightlife?
One night, my high school gay friend introduced me a friend that goes out; he invited me “Rockit” in Midtown. I met tons of Gaysians. Every week since then, I started to go out and hang out with Asian circles in different parties; tt was sense of community. I started my first party after Rockit discriminated against Asians, [telling them at the door that] it was private party. I wanted a great party for the Gaysians.
And you’ve since hosted, produced and promoted many events for the queer Asian community, or events where they can feel comfortable in. Do you still see lots of discrimination against Asians in queer nightlife spaces these days?
Yes, one bar in Chelsea still discriminates. But most places do want Gaysians, especially places with a high cover like circuit parties. The Millennial and Gen-Z Gaysians drink a lot more than previous generations.
For awhile post-lockdown, you were the entertainment director of XOXO Bar in Hell’s Kitchen! Would you like to do that in a different venue someday?
Yes, if the right opportunities approach me.
Do you have an all-time favorite party or scene in the past that you produced, promoted, hosted, etc.?
You did your homework, lol! The happy hour started a few years ago, to bring Asians together to socialize and network bi-weekly. I am currently the social chair for GAPIMNY, and I relaunched it as monthly event this past year. GAPIMNY is empowering Queer and Trans Asian Pacific Islanders; it educates Asians and fights for rights; it also has a social component.
And, you started a new party called “Dragonfruit” recently at a new, queer-friendly Thai restaurant and bar in Chinatown, Noree! I had so much fun at your launch that I came on board for the next installment. What should we tell the children about Dragonfruit?
Dragonfruit is where we promote Asian artists, Dragon Queens and dancers. We’re in Chinatown promoting queer [life and entertainment] in our own community.
Jolli B will serve her jokes and John Sun will dance his hot body off… and you guys know BaeJing with her amazing beats.
I’ll be seeing you there, can’t wait! Okay lastly, you change your hair color so much… what hue will it be next?
I am going back to my natural hair color for a few month… damaged hair!
Natural is best! Thank you Liam!