Originally published on metropolis.co.jp on November 2011

Ladybeard is Hong Kong’s strongest, fastest and prettiest pro-wrestler turned heavy metal singer. He first appeared in the mosh pits of the Hong Kong underground music scene back in 2008, and has earned a reputation as HK’s friendliest—yet most dangerous—gender bender. He talks to Metropolis about his upcoming Japan tour.

What brought on the rise of your alter ego Wu So Lui as a heavy metal vocalist?

At a wrestling event at the end of 2009 when he had no scheduled opponent, Ladybeard announced his third passion after fighting and dancing—singing Cantonese pop songs! Halfway through his sweet rendition of Hotcha’s “No Sunscreen,” the music stopped and long-time friend and metalhead Jackson Noisy entered the ring. Noisy told Ladybeard that Cantopop was inappropriate for a metalhead to be singing. An impromptu match was fought—for Ladybeard’s right to sing Cantopop. Sadly, he was defeated and dreams of becoming the fourth member of Hotcha were crushed.

At a return-from-injury match in March 2010, Ladybeard called Noisy into the ring. He told him he had discovered a way to embrace his strange love of Cantopop while maintaining his metalhead integrity: by creating a new genre of music called “Cantocore.”

Your Japan Tour is self-sponsored. Did you have difficulties planning it, i.e. language, culture, finance?

All of the above. This has been my biggest challenge to date. My Japanese skills are still in their infancy so I’ve had to rely on my friends in Japan and Hong Kong, to whom I’m eternally grateful. I hope I can repay the millions of favors soon. I really wanted to come here, so I just decided to do it. It’s easy to spend your whole life waiting to be “ready,” but if you decide you’re going to do something, you figure it out as you go along.

What are you most looking forward to doing/seeing/eating during your stay in Japan?

Specifically the metal scene and the culture. Such awesome and insane stuff comes out of Japan. I’ve spent a long time waiting to experience being within it, and to mix with the people who create it. I’m very excited about witnessing first hand the visual kei, Goth and Lolita kids. I’m partial to a punk or two, as well.

You’re based in Hong Kong where, like Japan, women are rather petite. Is it hard to find a dress your size?

It wasn’t too bad before I started lifting weights. I could buy dresses off the rack and rip my way into them. It’s harder now I’m larger, however. The biggest problem is that I’m so picky! I want to wear cute dresses because nobody wants to look like a frump, but I need something long enough to cover my crotch and nipples at the same time without preventing me kicking; and which is tight in all the right places while still leaving something to the imagination. Strapless never works, that thing’ll be around my waist in ten minutes. And I like halter necks, but they can end up pulling the whole thing too high at the front, and making my head look triangular. The great struggles of life….

Anything you’d like to share with anyone thinking about coming to see you in Tokyo? What are they in for?

First and foremost, a really good time. If people have a few laughs and enjoy the brutality, I’m happy. Expect a lot of energy, a lot of head-banging, some mispronounced Japanese and a few fun surprises. I’ll be thrilled to hang out with anyone who feels like checking it out. I’m grateful to anyone who gives my freak show the time of day.

Ladybeard
Fri Nov 18, Akasaka Crawfish
03-3584-2496
http://crawfish.jp

Sat Nov 19, Otsuka Red-Zone
03-5907-7201
www.red-zone.info/new_topics.html

Wed Nov 23, Katagaya Club Heavy Sick
03-3466-1445
www.heavysick.co.jp/club