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Tits and Sass: What Song Would You Strip To? — A Stripper Round Table, Part 1

Tits and Sass: What Song Would You Strip To? — A Stripper Round Table, Part 1
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There is this game played among women, usually on long car trips or on the couch with some wine. It goes like this: if you were a stripper, what songs would you dance to? Given the seriousness I’ve seen this question approached with, it seems many women have pondered this — the popularity of pole dancer-cizing would attest to this as well. Stripping seems to have become a common female fantasy.

 

So what are some of the effects of the economic downturn in the clubs?

Kat: It felt like it took a little while for the recession to catch up to strip clubs. First our customers had to lose their jobs and then their unemployment had to run out. I’ve found the key is finding the higher volume clubs and being accessible and consistent enough to build up regulars. It’s sort of depressing, but there is still good money to be made if you can make adjustments. I feel grateful that I already had several years' experience by the time the recession hit. I think it would be a lot harder if I was just starting out and figuring out how to do this job (which basically takes a couple years in itself).

Elle: It’s sad how often I have to explain to someone that they are required to tip if they are at the stage, or watching. It’s really frustrating when people tip the minimum; in Portland it is one dollar a song, and expect me to give them extra attention. I don’t even take my underwear off unless I feel I’ve met a monetary minimum, because I’m worth more than that. I really don’t understand how 8+ minutes of nude/semi nude dancing should equal two dollars. And nobody has yet been able to explain it to me.

Are you dancing to more “money making” songs?

Kat: Just making money from stage tips is a blast, but I don’t think it’s very realistic anymore, so I focus on selling dances. But I love any songs about making money and especially songs about making money while stripping! I don't think it has a subliminal effect on customers or anything, but they are fun. I also enjoy songs about making money selling drugs, especially if they're all about being really important and staying focused and shit, like Future's "Tony Montana."



Bubbles: I don't think I've sold a hell of a lot of dances based on what I've danced to on stage, but I have gotten some really nice tips. Dancing to music the audience doesn't know can decrease your stage tips, but in most clubs, it's your ability to sell lap dances that determines your earnings; stage performances are just background noise, so unless I went up there and did interpretive dance, it's unlikely that my stage music would impact my earnings in any way.

Catherine: When it's slow, I ask my customers what songs or bands they like and then request them for my stage set. A few different times, that's meant dancing to ACDC, unfortunately. But I can guilt a few dollars out of someone that way.

What are some awkward strip song selections?

Kat: We have zero control over songs when we’re doing lap dances, because that means that another girl is on stage and it’s either her or the DJ’s taste in music. I would like to think that I am a pro and can give a good dance to whatever is playing, but I absolutely hate lapdancing to novelty songs. These include Bloodhound Gang’s "A Lap Dance Is So Much Better When the Stripper Is Crying,” Adam Sandler’s “At A Medium Pace” and anything by Tenacious D.



Story: I've seen a stripper hanging upside down on the pole doing the chicken dance to Elmo's song and looking pretty deranged and happy with herself. I tend to feel a little awkward when I’m doing lap dances for a lovey-dovey customer while a coworker who prefers hardcore songs is on stage. I’m trying to be all sensual to lyrics like “Fuck me in the ass” and “This is how it feels to fuck on cocaine." Insert nervous laughter here.

Elle: Nirvana, Rape Me.

Catherine: I secretly love it when one of the dancers and one of the DJs gets into a tiff. This one woman at my club would never tip the DJ, and so he would put on Trisha Yearwood whenever she took the stage.

Is music selection very different from club to club?

Catherine: I've mostly worked at more glitzy "gentleman's clubs" in San Francisco and Las Vegas, where they play pretty much only club music and uptempo pop remixes. During the night shifts, they're very strict about playing music at a certain bpm (beats per minute), because research has shown that people are more likely to spend money when they're listening to a certain tempo. So at the pricier, corporate clubs I've worked at, they were very particular about what we could dance to during the busiest shifts. When the club is less crowded, or if it's a less expensive place, we'd have more freedom to pick our music. Basically they'd make more allowances for stuff that was slower and less mainstream.

Story: I’ve been a traveling dancer. Most strippers are hired on as "independent contractors," so we have a lot of freedom to move between clubs; there's no resume needed and most interviews are done on the spot, requiring nothing more than an audition. So from my travels, the U.S. doesn’t have the cultural diversity it used to. Just check the radio stations from one city to another — they’re all playing the same stuff! The most noticeable musical difference I’ve seen across the country is that some clubs play country and some don't.

The other variation comes with the customers or dancers themselves. In New York, I danced for a good handful of Russians; in the Midwest, white truckers and bikers; on the West Coast a lot of Mexican and East Indian men. New Orleans had me shaking it up for Cajuns and I bonded with some Native American gangsters in the Southwest. I’m glad to report that the U.S. isn’t totally homogeneous and boring.

Catch Part 2 of What Song Would You Strip To? — A Stripper Round Table on Wednesday!

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Comments

Love this article!

12/06/2011
iLashe  

me too thanks!

12/06/2011

Very interesting. Great article.

12/10/2011

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