Xunami Muse talks Drag Race and music making

Christine Fitzgerald 12 Min Read
12 Min Read
Xunami Muse
Photo via xunamimuse/Instagram

Xunami Muse took RuPaul’s Drag Race by storm…quite literally. The drag daughter of season 13 and All Stars 8 sensation Kandy Muse, Xunami, who hails from Panama but now calls New York her home, stunned on the runway with breathtaking looks (I mean, when you describe yourself as a “knock-off Naomi Campbell,” would we expect anything less?) and put the “t” in “talent” with her talent show performance and stellar singing performances in the Rusical and girl group challenge.

After she sashayed away, Xunami hit the recording studio and released three singles: “A Storm is Coming,” “It’s Giving,” and “Encima del Mundo.” She discovered her love of music while collaborating on Drag Race and plans to please our ears with more music very soon, including a collaboration with two of her fellow season 16 queens.

Xunami, who took the season’s Miss Congeniality crown (along with Sapphira Cristál), took the time to chat with us about her experience on Drag Race, the advice she got from her drag mother, and her musical aspirations in our exclusive interview.

Xunami Muse
Photo courtesy of MTV

Well, first of all, congratulations on the season and winning Miss Congeniality. I was very happy that you were recognized for your kindness and everything in the workroom.  As far as the season went, you brought out so many great looks. What was your favorite look from the season? 

For me, the egg. It had to be the one because I feel like that was the one that brought the most joy out of people. So that was my favorite one.

What was your favorite and your least favorite challenge during your time on the season?

I mean, I would love to say my least favorite challenge was Snatch Game. But honestly, it wasn't, because I love a challenge. Whether for good or bad, I learned something from it. So, I feel like the next time I go, I'll know how to tackle it differently. My favorite challenge… it's a toss-up between the Rusical and the girl group. That was really, really fun. 

When you did the talent show, you did one of your original songs. Were you involved in music before you came on the show?

No, not at all – and I think for me on a personal level, that's been one of my favorite discoveries – that I enjoy making music so much. After my talent show, I've actually made two other songs. Last week I made a song with Morphine and Mirage, which will come out later in the summer and I've been in the booth a lot of recordings. I think that's one of my favorite discoveries that came out from me doing the show.

I've listened to all the songs and they all have different sounds, you've got “A Storm is Coming” from the talent show and then you've got “It's Giving” and then you've got “Encima de Mundo”, who are your musical influences?

I feel it's kind of like how like you said that they're very versatile. I love Celia Cruz, you know, salsa, Beyoncé, obviously. I think Beyoncé is one of the perfect examples of someone who can sort of do any genre, and still have their own personal DNA in it. And I feel like that's kind of how I'm thinking about it. I want to kind of do it all. I want to try it all and just allow the voice to take its shape.

Xunami Muse
Photo courtesy of MTV

Is there going to be an extended version of “A Storm Is Coming”? Because it's only a minute long and I just want more.

There is actually, I asked Ocean Kelly, who produced and helped me write the song, to do her own verse on it because I definitely want to extend that. Especially because this summer…June is the busiest time of the year for drag queens and I want to perform it at the festivals, so that is in the works, I'm glad you asked. 

Is there going to be a full album coming out anytime soon?

There's a lot of talks about that, and I definitely want to. I mean, my answer is going to be yes. I've recorded so many things. It’s not finished, it's in the works, but I believe what I have, if I can put it together and flesh it out, it can definitely be an album.

Besides discovering that you had a voice and that you could sing, what has been the other coolest thing that's happened since you've been on the show? 

Definitely meeting a lot of the fans all over the country. I mean, that's been great, just hearing their stories and the reasons why they like what I do. And, also, bonding with the girls. I would say that's definitely at the top of the list, getting to know all these artists on a personal level. I remember going into Drag Race and I had this mentality of like, yeah, it's going to be all about me but then in there I was like, I like all these people and I just want to be friends with them.

Did you get any advice from Kandy before you went on the show? 

Kandy, she mainly was like, be present, have fun, and make sure that you know who you are in there. And, I think I was talking to Tom, one of the producers, and he was like, obviously everybody wants to win but there can only be one winner. So, knowing that there's a high chance that you're not going to win, just making it on the show and being a part of the experience is a win in itself. That's basically what she was telling me – because you know, she's done it twice and she lost twice so she knows that thing about not winning but still leaving like a winner.

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It's no secret that most of the Miss Congeniality contestants from past seasons have ended up on All Stars. Is that something you would want to do if you got the call?

Absolutely.  I felt like I left a little too early and I felt like I still had so much more to show – not even just the drag part of the talent, but like on a personal level, you know, like the person that I am, because why I love Drag Race is because not only are we being fed with so much talent and so many great looks, but we get a look back behind these humans, you know what I mean? And even people who don't do drag, they can relate to all of us. And, yeah, I would love to do All Stars, whenever the time comes. 

We're seeing a lot more drag coming into the mainstream with shows like We're Here and things like that. Do you think that drag performers are being taken more seriously these days?

Yeah.  Finally, you know, because there's so much that goes into it. We're just as capable as the singers that go on live TV and the actors who are on network television shows and the comedians who tour the country like drag queens do. And the great thing about drag is that there are so many other disciplines that you're put in a box and you're not allowed to go outside of it but with drag, you can try it all, and a lot of drag queens are very, very successful at so many things. Look at Trixie, look at Bob the Drag Queen, Bianca del Rio, these are artists who you can't really just put in one box. Those are definitely people that I look up to and that's where I want to head to.

What would you want to use your platform for? Now you're singing, are there other things that you want to do that you haven't yet?

Hosting shows! Oh, okay, to be more specific, something I really want to do is, I want to get into voice acting. I feel like my dream job would be voicing characters in a video game that would just merge all my passions into one thing and that's very me. 

Xunami Muse
Photo courtesy of MTV

What is next for you?

Well, definitely more music for sure and exploring so many different genres and also a lot more TV and screen. That's something that I'm very adamant about tackling. I want to host a red carpet. I want to interview people. I'm sort of intentionally moving in that direction because for example, I love what you do. You know what I mean? We're getting to know each other here and I feel like I will be good at it.

Are you going to be at DragCon this year? 

I am. I cannot wait to meet all the fans that I haven't yet. That's going to be fun. 

Do you have a message for your fans here at Socialite Life? 

Just like Sapphira said, it pays to be kind. It really isn't that hard, you know. You can still be witty and funny and get your joke in but kindness, especially now more than ever, we need it. You know what I mean? And now that we live in such an interconnected world, it just feels really good to be nice to everyone.

Follow Xunami Muse on Instagram, Twitter and get some merch or book a Cameo with her here.

You can watch the full interview with Xunami Muse below!

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