Carson Kressley

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

On this episode, we chat with Emmy Winning TV Star and best-selling author Carson Kressley, most known for his work in Queer Eye for the Straight Guy and RuPaul’s Drag Race, and who is also our Pride issue cover boy…on newsstands around the nation and Metrosource.com. Carson comes from an extensive career as a competitor in equestrian events, fashion - having worked for Ralph Lauren for a number of years, and of course, reality TV – in addition to Queer Eye and Drag Race, was seen on How To Look Good Naked, Jeopardy, Celebrity Apprentice, Worst Cooks in America, and of course, Dancing with Stars, just to name a few. As a red carpet maven for the Oscars and Golden Globes, he is no stranger to E! Entertainment or Good Morning America, and the list goes on and on.

We chatted about his early career as an equestrian competitor, wearing Calvin Klein jeans in 4th grade, his role as an activist, what dating app he is on, how to slide into his DMs, the importance of Drag Race, what essentials to include in your closet, the importance of being supportive of other entertainers, his hangout with Cher, and how many tequila sodas it takes to get him to dance well…

Hosted by Alexander Rodriguez

This is metro source minis, theofficial podcast to Metro source magazine and home of short form interviews with your favoritepersonalities from the lgbtq world and beyond. Quick, Fun and informative. It'smetro source on the go, out in proud since one thousand nine hundred andninety, out in pround, since one thousand nine hundred and ninety, theyear I was born. Just getting this is metro source minis. I'm yourhost, Alexander Rodriguez, lead writer for Metro Source Magazine and Avid podcaster.So on air personalities like myself and the myriad of other lgbtq newscasters, entertainmentshow host other podcasters, you name it. Oh to the pioneers who took theleap as out of the closet media personalities before anybody else did. Andtoday I chat with Emmia winning US TV star, Best Selling Arthur Carson Cresley. Of course we know him from Queer I for the straight guy and Rupaul'sdrag race, who was also our pride issue cover garum on new stands aroundthe nation. Or Metro sourcecom okay, he comes from an extensive career asa competitor in equestrian events, by the way, many years in fashion,having worked for Ralph Lauren for a number of years, and, of course, reality TV. In addition to queer eye and drag race, he wasseen on how to look good naked, jeopardy, celebrity apprentice, worst cooksin America and, of course, dancing with the stars, just to namea few. And as a red carpet Maven, he is no stranger toenter payment or good morning America. The list goes on and on and on. Please welcome Carson Crassley. That's me. I've sound like a reality TV ho. I've been all over the play well, you know, but youmake it work. So you know, I don't want to get started offto series, but we do have something serious to talk about. All,gay men are supposed to dance, aren't they? What happened on dancing withthe stars? You know what they're so I think they're supposed to know howto move. And I will tell you. I did not get that Jeane.So it's okay some of us, you know, we're not fully blessed, and I'm actually very good. If you took me to the club andgave me fourteen Tequila's I'm a fantastic dancer, but when you have to do itin front of like, you know, ten million people on live television anda sparkly pirate outfit, it's more daunting for some reason. You know, it's very it's very difficult to think of you as a shy boy andI know during your interview with Metro storts you were a shy boy. Didyou think it was competing in the equestrian events that kind of brought out yourpersonality? Yeah, I was very shy, you know, like all of elementaryschool I was, you know, the quiet kid and you know,a part of it I will attribute to, you know, maybe being bullied andnot being comfortable with who I was as a young adult and a teamage. You're in a preteen you know, when you get picked on, youfind a coping mechanism. You think, HMM, how I'm going to distractthese people so they don't clock me on my Calvin cline jeans in thefourth grade and you develop a sense of humor and a personality as kind ofa shield, and I think that's where I got my sense of humor.I was just like, if I can keep people laughing, then they're notgoing to bully me. So that's, you know, on the ultimate silverlining, I think, because it's been a great help in my career inwhether it was showing horses or working for Ralph Lauren or, of course,doing television. Now, did your family kind of have an idea? Youknow, this young kid is very particular about his jeans as outfits. Theymust have known early on that you were you're a little different, you werespecial. Yeah, I mean, I literally have like my kindergarten picture andI have painted nails and like a little paistley shirt on, and it wasyeah, I think they kind of got the memo at about age three.Well, you know, people say I woke up like this. You werejust born like that. You know,...

...you're born that way. Was thedoctor slap my ass and I was like, oh, that's great, and he'sa doctor. Doctor. Now, Carson, how come we haven't seenyou in a Horse Related Reality TV show? Horses are still a big part ofyour life? Yeah, I mean I grew up on a horse farmand that's something I've always done and it gave me such a great world viewbecause I got to travel and meet all two kinds of very different people allover the world doing that and and I still do it. I'm actually goingto her show tonight in San Diego and I don't know why we haven't donea reality show yet. I did. I have a farm in Pennsylvania andI've done a bunch of shows. They're for food network and animal planet andantiques road show. We haven't done something specifically on horses, but I amhopefully producing something in the very near future about the incredibly competitive and wacky worldof equestrian competitions. So stay on the lookout. You know, if it'snot out there, you got to make it happen. So I'm trying todo that myself. That's exactly right. In my mind, I imagine thiswaiting for guffment style, like mockumentary. Almost I made I would be there. Yeah, maybe that are a little bit of dance MOMS thrown in.You know, good to see, I believe, Miller whee lad herself inthe crowd of horses. Now, Carson, we see you on every TV showimaginable. I feel like. We feel like we really know you andthat you're kind of ours, so to speak. We look at your socialmedia. It's very positive it's colorful, it's, as see, very onpoint and branded. But is there a private side to you that you chooseto keep off camera? No, not really. I mean I think sometimesmy family know. Sometimes when I either have them on a TV show orin my social media, they're like, oh, we didn't sign up forthis, we don't want to do this, so I kind of keep them whereverthey feel comfortable. But as far as me and my life, it'spretty open. You know, you can see all the details on instagram ortwitter or facebook or grinder or scrub. Are you really on grinder? What'sthat? Are you really on grinder? No, I'm not on that,but I might be on some other ones, as I am, you know,a single lady. Yeah, it's because you're so busy, you know, and that's another question I wanted to ask you. You continually are arein the public eye, continually doing shows and of course we know with dragrace and Queer I, you've also become a spokesperson for the Lgbtq community.Do you feel that your personal life, your personal journey, has had totake a back seat? Such as you, you are a single guy, you'rebusy. It's hard to pin you down? Well, it's actually notthat hard to pin me down, but I am busy. Yeah, Imean I think everybody has to, you know, learn how to balance,you know, work and family and their love relationships. And certainly being busyhas been a blessing and I love it. And I think, you know,everything is about timing and I think now I'm ready to, you know, find somebody and settle down. You know, I'm not getting any youngerand but you know, I'm not mad about any of it. I thinkit's all meant to be. You know, it's all fate and timing and whenit's supposed to happen, it will happen. Okay. So I haveto know if somebody was gonna slide into your DM's, you know, toyou know, to woo you, so to speak. What kind of DMwould what kind of DM would you be responding to first? Oh Gosh,that's a good question. I think somebody WHO's actually done their homework and,instead of just saying Suck Bro, you...

...know, comments on something like Isaw your show on e and I thought it was really good, or Ilove the picture you posted of your wars or whatever. Just, you know, you have to kind of make an effort, not that big of aneffort, but just a small one. Yeah, of course, of course, because if your rules in prominent LGBTQ media projects, you have become thespokesperson, this role model for the community. It kind of came with the job. It's not like you filled out an application to be an activist.How have you grown into that role and how has that aspect changed your life? For me, it's very organic. I just do me. You know, ever since Queer I people were saying, you know, what are you outthere promoting? What are you trying to do? Episode? I'm justliving authentically and happens to be on reality. Tell a vision and for a lotof people that is that visibility and that authenticity is a very powerful combinationbecause, you know, literally I would you know, seventeen years ago,when queer eye for the Strait that came out, I would be traveling somewhereand I'd be in an airport and people will be like, I never knewany gay people and never a medic quer person. I was like what,have you never been on an airplane? Have you never had your hair highlighted? Certainly you've met the gays before and it was that sense of visibility andseeing you as a person and not as a poster child really changes people's mindsand attitudes and they say, well, you're a lot more like me thanI realized and you seem like a great person. Why shouldn't you be ableto adopt or get married or all those things? So it helps push equalityforward. I, you know, try to keep it casual and just,you know, do my thing. I do feel very strongly about supporting LGBTQyouth and I've worked for a long time with Cindy lapper on the true colorsunited. You're the host. You were her M see. Yeah, wedo a concert every year. We raise a lot of money because unfortunately,gay kids, Queer kids tend to be at a much higher risk for homelessnessbecause they are still getting turned away by their families or, you know,certain faith based shelters may turn them away. So it's a real problem and cindywant to tackle it and a bunch of US got together and it's beenalmost, I think, twenty years and we've done some great work and pastsome great legislation and we're making sure that lgbtq kids have a voice and areseen and are hopefully not subject to homelessness, because it's a totally fixable problem.Well, and on behalf of the shy, you know, gay kidsgrowing up. I was once shy, believe it or not. You know, seeing people identified with in the media, it just shapes a life. Sothank you. Thank you very much for that. When you saw thecasting call for a show called Queer Eye, we know Bravo was some small cablenetwork that people are like what, and then to have a show thatthe title actually is like we're queer, like there's no secret Europe. wasthat a weird casting call to get and what made you respond to that,because you really kind of had to come out to the world. Yeah,I mean there really wasn't. I didn't even know there was a casting calland I didn't even know what casting calls were, and it was so serendipitousand I, like, I totally believe in fate and destiny, because Ishouldn't have even known about this show. I work for Ralph Lauren. Iwas a fashion stylist. I didn't work in the television space, but oneof my producers at Ralph Lauren said, Oh, I heard about this show. It's going to be on Bravo and I was like, what's that?An on stick cooking spray? And she said no, you should go andtry out for it. So I just I literally went downtown in Chelsea inthe city and took casting place where they did like Domino's pizza commercials and Sharmanand I went into a room and they...

...showed me a tape of a straightdine. They said what do you think? And they were, you know,a bunch of other contenders and they were very earnest and talked about buildingbridges between our communities and I thought that was lovely. But when they gotto me, I was like listen, the guys hot. Can we justget him out of the pleaded Khakis and get rid of mullet and he'll bea total smoke shell. Let's do this. And they're like okay, we likeyour attitude, and I think that was it. I think they werelike okay, we're going to hire you. And then we made a pilot intwo thousand and two and again I didn't think anything was really going tohappen. And then by two thousand and three, NBC Universal had purchased Bravothey loved queer eye. They want to make it the centerpiece of their rebrandednetwork and the rest is her story. Now explain to me your time atRalph Loren you work there for a number of years and you really worked behindthe scenes in a number of ways. Described to me what the fashion worldwas like at that time. Well, it was very exciting and you know, I do think in New York there was a heyday of American designers andof course it started with Halston and bill blast and and Kline and and then, you know, and new generation took over in the s and that wasreally like, you know, power and excess and Glamor and and fun andfashion, and those were, you know, Calvin Klein and Ralph Lauren and DonnaKaren, and working with Ralph was fantastic. I did not have afashion degree. I have a degree in finance and our history and I justknew I wanted to work for either Ralph or Calvin and I moved to NewYork City and I got myself an interview and I got myself a job beingRalph's brothers Assistant. And it was just like the devil where's product. Itwas high stress and pressure, but everyone was really nice, unlike the devil'sproduct. Yeah, and I really flourished there. I loved it. Ilove the brand, I love the culture, I love the people there, andit was the time when Ralph Lauren was going public, so it wasa very exciting time. It was a big company. I think there waseight thousand people working there then and and we did amazing, fun things.You know. I I would eventually started styling all of the ad campaigns andphotoshoots. So I was, you know, going to Peru in the summer tofind snow to do a holiday ad with a bunch of gorgeous models andsome Samoyan puppies, and, you know, going to the islands in the winterand shooting father's Day campaigns and working with, you know, Patrick toMarshall Yea and just great photographers of every kind, and going to Milan andstyling runway show was at the plazzo and sneaking off to see the Dulchan Gabanashow or sneaking off to see Versacchi or go to the Versacchi. I tellYa, it was a really fun time. Now, are you going to playyourself in the miniseries about Ralph Lauren. Is there a miniseries? Now?I'm just joking because we had Houstin, so you know all of the designsare going to get there. Are you going to play yourself or whowould you pick to play you? Let's see, I would probably I don'tknow if someone who looks a lot likely, maybe Zac Fron, you know.Okay, yeah, although he's like daddied out now, so I know, I know, you'd have to slim down daddy than I am right now. We see you never get involved in social media drama, a drama,celebrity gossip. You know you're very Sassy, but it's never hurtful or malicious towardsother celebrities and you've been around everybody. I think it's become a rarity inlgbtq entertainment business because everybody wants to get that laugh or that retweet andit often comes from putting somebody down or being sassy towards somebody. Where doyou get that positive and supportive attitude? Um? Well, first of all, I just think we're one big happy...

...community and we need to support eachother. So taking down somebody never feels good, you know, and I'ma big believer of, you know, not laughing at somebody, but laughingwith somebody. So I try to frame all of my humor in that way. You know, it's never meant to be derogatory. Is Meant to be, you know, observatory or funny and hopefully we can laugh together. Andhonestly, I'm just not that into all of the twitter, you know,back and forth. I just don't have the time for that. I'm ofcourse I'm busy shopping and, you know, make writing horse shows and right horses. Did you ever think that drag race was going to become as bigas it has become? Um, yes, I think so. You know,I always knew it was a great show and was a fan from thevery, very early days and I've been doing it now for I think thisis seven or eight years. Wow. And we have group Paul and wehave amazing drag queens and that is a recipe for success and I think certainlyit's. It's more successful than I think anybody could imagine and but it's youknow, it's a great show. The time is right for it. Wehave a great leader, we have the most amazing producers and crew and wehave incredible queens that give us new life every season. So it's a veryexciting show to be a part of. I'm thrilled with its success and,just like we are. I for the straight guy having Emmy's and all ofthat. It's all wonderful and having a hit show is fantastic, but whensomeone comes up to you on the street and says, oh, because ofclear I was able to come out to my family and my life was somuch easier, thank you, or because of drag race, somebody in,you know, some tiny country somewhere, we're gay, being gay is probablyillegal. They get to see people living their best life and being authentic andbeing celebrated for that, and I think it, you know, is canbe incredibly inspirational and say, listen, there's a whole world out there foryou. Just hang on and you know we will love and celebrate you.And I love that you said that because I know as the show's become bigger, there's people that say, you know, drag has become too commercial, it'sgetting too big, but that big voice is telling the stories that sothat need to be told, and I really feel that we've incorporated more ofthe backstory political and social movement rather than just a reality competition show. SoI'm glad that it has a bigger voice. Yeah, exactly. Now, WHO'smore apt to be late to set? Massage Ross Matthews or Rupaul or you? Oh Gosh, it's probably me. I mean, let's see, Imean, yeah, it's probably me. I hate being early because I feellike I'm you know, I feel like I'm wasting time and what thatcould even doing something. Yeah, I try to get their right on time. So I'm literally like, you know, working from the clock backwards. waslike, Oh, it's twenty nine minutes to the studio, I betterlybeen twenty nine and a half minutes. There's any issues on the way thatI'm in trouble? Yeah, with lock don't need much makeup. No,you don't. You, I mean you, you are a flower than you.Now I have to know all of the celebrities you've met, all theshows you've done this whole career, you know, and it's in a relativelyshort time. You know, we talked about Queer I've been so many yearsago, but in terms of the expanse of what you done in that time, it's pretty pretty impressive and I don't know when you sleep. But fromall of that time, all this experiences, what is one of the craziest storiesthat you're like, Oh God, that memory, that that was crazy, that was in I have a good one. Yeah, I have beendoing Showbiz for about twenty years, and...

...that's like dog years, like it'smore like twenty four years or something. But one year and I'm a bigshare fan. I think she's fantastic and she had a movie coming out.This is like twenty years ago. Was the faily brothers was called stuck onyou, and there was a party and it was in New York and youget invited to these things and I entered this big kind of like nightclub andas I walk through the doors, magically I got you babe started playing,and then as I entered the room whom they were booths lining it and adance for in the center, and I looked across the sea of people andin the distance I saw a share at a booth and she was like makingeye contact with me, and I'm like what me, and then she waslike this, and I was like what, I'm being beckoned by share, andthen I walked over to where you and I was like, Oh,my God, I can't believe this happening, and I got you. Babe isplaying and it was very carmic and I felt like we were supposed tobe together and she was lovely and a fan and delightful and, you know, I had was talking to her about like old sonny and share shows andsome of the costumes and Bob Mackie and we were just, you know,I was like wait, we might get married. And the next day Iwas going to go interview her for US weekly and I went to her hoteland I was like, what do I wear for share? And I woreRoberta pavali snake skin and python pants with purple whipstitching and a pink Tuxedo shirt. Understand, understood, understand. And then I was in Brazil and Ihad one of those necklaces that has like the Jesus and the Mary on bothsides, called a scop you lock Apuler, Yep, and I went there andI was interviewing her in her hotel room, like at the Carlisle orsomething, and she had a sweat suit on and she had like a dorag, like a Kerchip or a Bandana on her hair and her assistant wentinto the other bedroom of the suite and we sat down and started doing herinterview and it was going great and then at the end to love that neckblush and I was like, Oh my God, you're here, take it, and I took it off my head and I was standing above her andI was trying to put it on her and they don't open up. They'reactually pretty annoying and they're made of the finest little gold chain that gets tangled. So I'm trying to put it over her hair and her kerchief and it'sgetting stuck and like things are moving and she's like Oh, and then asI'm huvering over her, the assistant is coming out and she's like are youassaulting share? No, I'm just trying to get the nicklace on the soit was like the assistant was freaking out. Well, you know, it wasfine. And then, I don't know, it was like two weekslater, my phone rang. I was in New York at my kitchen tablepaying bills and it was like an unknown number and I was like, Ihate answering those, but I also hate getting the voicemail and then having tocall them back. So I was like hello, and it was like Ohord and I was like oh my share, and it was share and she waslike I just want to thank you for the beautiful medallions. I worethem on a hike and now they're next to my bed and I was like, I can't believe share just called me on my don so that's a prettyamazing story for a little gay boy from Allan Town. Well, you know, she's going to be getting a biopic. It was just announced for the sameproducers who did Mama Mia. So maybe that'll be a scene and onceagain you'll be playing yourself. Yeah, maybe I better get my team onthat. It's I'm so as we mentioned, your very on point with you outfits, your looks, Your charm. What do you say to somebody?What advice do you have or words of encouragement you have for somebody from theLGBTQ community who doesn't ascribe to all of that? They may feel outside ofthe picture of what a fabulous gay men looks like. Well, I meaneverybody can define their own version of fabulosity and everybody has great style. Theyjust have to find it, and I think it's you know, you don'thave to fit in and be like, you know what you think of fabulousgame and is you just do your version...

...of you. And I've always whetherit was quear I for the straight guy, or have a looked good naked orget a room that we just did on Bravo, it's always about helpingpeople tap into what they love and how can they express that in the bestpossible way. So that's what I would tell people. You know, havea style role model. Sometimes you have to study a little bit. LikeI'm terrible at math, so I would need to study that if I wantedto be good at it. Same thing with you know how you dress andpresent yourself. If that's not your natural kind of inclination, you need tostudy it a little bit, but it will come and it's so worth it, because I believe more than anything that you know your clothes or your armor your clothes or what you go out into the world with, and itcould really affect how you feel and make you much happier and more successful whenyou're doing it right for you. I love that. All right, thislast one is for social medium. We did the stereo stuff for the article. So tell me what are the must haves that every gay men should havein their closet. Oh Gosh, I mean I mean for most people andnot for everybody. I think nowadays you need like a chic track pants that'snot a sweat pant. It's more tailored, lighter fabric almost looks a little Dressy, a great sneaker, a great blue blazer, a perfect white buttondown, fantastic jeans. We all live in Denim. You absolutely have tohave great jeans and that's really it. And then you fill it in withall the other things. And I always say, you know, invest ingreat pieces, that Blue Blazer, that suit, those great brown lace upbrogues or whatever, and then have fun with the other stuff. Get stuffat Zara and HM and discount places and mix it in with the higher qualitystuff, and that keeps it really fresh. You don't have to spend money onyour good quality basics, like your jeans and your Blazers, and thenseasonally you have fun with these, you know, more disposable brands to keepit fresh. I could talk to you all day. Thank you so muchfor joining us today. Tell everyone where you want. We want them tofind you. Follow you, slide into your DM's at yes, you canfind me at Carson Crestley on Facebook, instagram, twitter and scruff. Ithink people would recognize you. Do you? Do people ever be like that?Can't be you, it must be a catfish. They're like, isthat? Is that YOU ELLEN DEGENERES? It's no, I don't have myactual picture up their right away. They've got it, you know, theygot to do a little reading first and then they can find me. Allright. Well, I'm on scrub too, so I'll be looking okay, allright, will fit me, Carson. Thank you. Thank you so much, and for everybody, go get the issue, the pride issue ofMetro source, on newstands across the nation and, of course, at MetroSourcecom Carson, you are a scholar and a gentleman. Thank you so much. I'll see you soon, Boppun, at the horse show. That hasbeen my chat with the cover boy, Carson Crestli. You can read myindepth article. Like I said, we talked a lot more about behind thescenes from drag race, also from Queer I. and that's our episode.I'm your host and lead writer from Metro source out Sander Rodriguez. You canfind me on Instagram at Alexander is on air. Until next time, staytrue and do you boom. Having that, has been another metro source mini like, share and subscribe on your favorite podcast player and check out the latestissue of Metro Sports magazine on newstands or online at Metro sourcecom. Follow uson Facebook, instagram at natural source and on twitter at Metro course man.Until next time, they fast.

In-Stream Audio Search

NEW

Search across all episodes within this podcast

Episodes (44)