New Orleans bounce artist Big Freedia went from cult sensation to bona fide TV star in 2013, when her gritty reality show, Big Freedia: Queen of Bounce, became a runaway hit for Fuse. She’s collaborated with everyone from Beyoncé to RuPaul to the Postal Service and even set a Guinness World Record for twerking, but when Season 5 wrapped, her future seemed in flux: In August 2016, she narrowly escaped a potentially career-ending 10-year prison sentence on charges of theft of federal housing-assistance funds. (She instead received three years’ probation and a $35,000 fine.)
Now Freedia’s show is finally returning to Fuse for Season 6, with a fittingly new title, Big Freedia Bounces Back. And Yahoo has the exclusive premiere of the series’ trailer, which shows her reevaluating her entire life and career.
The trailer captures all the highs and lows of Freedia’s past roller-coaster year, including a chance encounter with avowed fan Katy Perry at the Grammys, clashes with her backup dancers and longtime manager, concerns about the faithfulness of her boyfriend, and a visit with a voodoo priest who reveals shocking predictions about Freedia’s future.
Freedia’s show not only has been a smash for Fuse, but also a groundbreaker for the bounce and LGBTQ scenes. Freedia recently told Yahoo that she was proud that Queen of Bounce had “put New Orleans and the culture of bounce music on the map. So I’m very excited to be representing the hometown. … [My music] originated from New Orleans: the sound, the feeling, the movements. It’s huddled around New Orleans like there’s no other. I’m very excited about where the music came from and where it is now.”
Big Freedia also discussed her connection with queer fans, saying she gets “lots of DM messages, a lot people hitting me on all of my different social medias telling me how I inspire them, how I’m doing something really great for the LGBT community, how I put people in different positions to be able to be themselves and just be free.”
As for the obstacles she has faced as an openly gay and gender-fluid rapper, she said with a shrug, “Right now I’m not really facing any challenges but to keep my music alive, keep my music hot, and keep my movement going. That’s the only challenge I face when I wake up every day. … [There’s been] lots of progression. Lots of change. Lots of things have happened since I’ve started, where I feel the music has grown. The community has grown with the music, and the people have opened up and are being way more open-minded than when I first started. The only thing out there is usually people don’t know how to identify me. I identify in any kind of way they feel comfortable. If they want to say ‘he,’ ‘she,’ whatever. I’m me. So I’m comfortable with who I am; I’m comfortable in my own skin. People can feel free to come up to me in any way they choose and call me whatever.”
Big Freedia Bounces Back premieres Sept. 12 at 10 p.m. on Fuse.
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