Motoring around the country in a vinyl-packed 1984 Chevy art van called "The Black Pearl," between shows in Wichita and Phoenix, Minneapolis' Venus DeMars and All the Pretty Horses passed through Albuquerque. Luckily, the travelers made a stop at Alibi headquarters. For 15 years DeMars has been performing in the theatrical style of '70s Bowie-esque glam merged with early '80s Batcave—a combination otherwise deemed "dark glam.” A commanding, leather-clad transgender singer, guitar player, artist, DJ and opera fan, DeMars and her band (completed by LeFreak on bass and T-Rev on drums) are in the midst of a 14-day, six-show vacation and spiritual journey.
"I try to be tasteful and fun and sexy, but not sexual—not vulgar. I'm not trying to be shocking. I'm just trying to be an interestingly attractive person on stage doing rock and roll," DeMars says in a slightly Midwestern accent (she grew up in Duluth). New Mexicans can witness this on Saturday, plus she’ll be DJing “95 percent records” pulled from her collection of punk, new wave and ’80s disco.
While DeMars says All The Pretty Horses is not about being transgender, she does have this message: "I want people to know that it can be cool to be trans, and for the trans kids out there trying to figure out what to do—and for any kid who feels like an outsider—they can be who they are no matter what other people say and think,” she says. “They can be strong and significant and have the power to change the world."