On December 8, 2020, DIRTYBIRD and Anabatic Records founder Worthy took to social media to announce “Today I break free, come out (or whatever metaphor I’m supposed to be using) I am ready to say this to the WORLD!!! I am Transgender.” Kristy—who states her pronouns as she/her/they/them and identity as non-binary fem—was one of the four original members of Claude VonStroke’s imprint Dirtybird. And this week, she releases “Love & Give,” which will be her first single released on the label as Mz Worthy.
“Love & Give” is the perfect inaugural first chapter to her start as Mz Worthy. The hypnotic track has mesmerizing vocals that repeat “Love yourself. Give yourself.” Embodying the song itself, Mz Worthy continues to share her story with the world. On release day, she took time to detail her experience on Billboard, expressing, “If you had told me in June the year before that I would be out in public in a dress and not completely freaking out, I would have said you were crazy. It was on July 4, 2020, the day I now call My Independence Day, that I started to have the giant, life-changing realization that I was transgender.”
That Summer was the peak of the pandemic, and Mz Worthy was still streaming weekly on Dirtybird’s Twitch channel. “Every time I would go live, I had such a strange feeling come over me. I was wrapped up in my head, wondering if people could tell that I was transitioning,” they divulge. “That fall, I felt even more self-conscious when I began to perform at socially distanced shows. At one show, a girl commented on how nice my painted nails looked. It felt so validating, but also a bit scary too. Did they know? Could they tell?” She adds that when she told her closest friends, which included the other Dirtybird originators, they were nothing but accepting. Kristy also connected with other trans DJs to help “navigate this change” during this time.
In an integral part of her narrative, she also reflects on the state of dance music today. “I had always seen the dance music scene as a place where all people are accepted since I stumbled into my first rave in NYC back in 1997. The roots of dance music have grown out of the LGBTQ+ clubs in the ’70s and ’80s, and so I hoped for acceptance,” she acknowledges. “But I wondered how things really were now as I vacillated on my decision to come out. There has been a lot of ‘bro culture’ coming up into the house music world that was not there 10 years ago or anytime prior to my knowledge.”
Not many people will have the same shared experience as Mz Worthy, who first appeared on the scene as a cisgender white mate. “As I started to pay more attention to lineups and DJ rosters, it became more apparent to me how few women and especially trans-women were being booked and represented. I realize now how blindly naive I was to the inequities of the social imbalances in the music industry when I was unconsciously presenting as a cis-white male.”
She later affirms how grateful she is for how accepting the scene has been of this change, and how happy she is to finally be herself: “a visible member of the LGBTQ+ communities.” In the social media announcement from a little over a year ago, one of her closing sentiments was, “Today I’m feeling stronger, happier, and more In [sic] charge of my life… I hope that by coming out I can give [someone] else the strength to embrace themselves the way I finally am.”
Read Mz Worthy’s full article on Billboard and listen to “Love & Give” below. Enjoy!