When I was living/working in New York and visiting Atlanta, I was sure to catch local cable TV to see this bizarre and fascinating show with the one and only DeAundra Peek. DeAundra is a captivating and surreally charismatic persona. Her zest and humor is infectuous. She has the same affect on me as a particularly famous Tibetan monk. And in a way, she IS a guru....  A high point for me was when DeAundra and Duffy Odum (DeAundra's talented sidekick) participated in the opening segment of the last ever U.S.A. Swans concert in 1997 and later made a special appearance at my birthday party (in 98) -bringing out a huge chocolate cake to a dining room of 46 stunned and joyous guests.  However,  the person who created DeAundra is the one I wanted to interview for my journal because he is what I love- revere- and absolutely respect : a seasoned and thoroughly professional world-class entertainer.
Atlanta is honored to have Rosser and I am thrilled to present him to you.


Jarboe:
At what point in your life did you become interested in performance?


Rosser: My Mom says that I've been performing all my life. Perhaps it started the time I got ahold of her "Really Red" lipstick when I was 4 years old and smeared it over my entire face. Today's cast of characters began because I was asked to dress up in early 1987 as a part of "The American Music Show", the longest running public access show in America, which I'm still very involved with.


J: Who are some of the earliest performers you saw that you feel made an impression upon you - and for what reasons?


R: The first record I ever bought was Lily Tomlin's "And That's The Truth", she floored me with the many characters she was doing. I was fascinated with one person's ability to become so many different people. Most anything from "Laugh In" got me because all those people played so many different funny characters. Elton John was another big influence, his wild image changing from one season to the next had me cutting articles about him out of everything I could find. Later on, RuPaul's influence fundamentally affected me ever since we met and became friends on the set of "The American Music Show" in 1983 (it's where he got his start too!). Over the years Ru has reinvented himself more times than Madonna!


J: How does one measure fame?


R: Well, that's all relative to your particular place in the world I think. Somebody might think that being mentioned in the church bulletin means fame. Somebody else might think real fame eludes them even though they're in the papers every day. I'm a mixed bag really, when I go to my watering hole here in Atlanta I feel hugely famous because nearly everyone there knows me, but if I go somewhere else it's a different story. Oprah once said that she always knew from childhood that she was going to be famous, she just didn't know exactly how she would get there. It's been the same for me, I've always known that I stuck out and I've learned how to channel that knowledge into something positive. I remember feeling most famous the day after I appeared on "The American Music Show" for the very first time in 1983, a clerk in a bookstore looked right at me and said, "I saw you on TV last night!" I was hooked.