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mister-cee

For the past few years, Mister Cee has been leading a double life. The celebrated DJ known as “The Finisher” proudly plays Buju Banton’s “Boom Bye Bye,” a song about murdering gay people, but has also been busted—three times—for soliciting oral sex from gay prostitutes. It’s a paradox that continues to perplex Mister Cee’s fans and friends alike.

Recently, Mister Cee—born Calvin Lebrun—sat down with GQ for a wide-ranging interview that he hopes will finally set the record straight on who really is.

During the article, Mister Cee admits to frequently soliciting prostitutes after being introduced to “tricking” at strip clubs in 2000. He cops to paying for sex to cope with a broken heart and because it satisfied a need. Despite his attraction to sex workers, Mister Cee says he stopped paying for sex. “If I get arrested right now for that same type of activity, I’m doing 60 days in jail, hands down, done,” he told GQ.

While many have accused Mister Cee of being gay because was caught on multiple occasions with male sex workers dressed in drag, he flat-out denies it because he only had oral sex with them.

“No offense to transgender women, but I only get with transgender women for one thing and one thing only, and that’s for oral sex,” he said. “Like I said: I never had sex with a man. I never had sex with a transgender woman.”

He also denied being gay on air, telling listeners: “I know that I’m still in denial, because I know that I love women. Any woman that’s been with me know that I love women. But occasionally I get the urge to have fellatio with a transsexual, a man that looks like a woman,” he told listeners. “And then I’m sitting here saying, ‘But I’m not gay,’ because I haven’t penetrated another man.”

The distinction seems ridiculous, but GQ gives some context about Mister Cee’s tenuous relationship with his sexuality.

After the first Daily News article came out, he went on the air and said nothing, just played Biggie’s “Dead Wrong” and Nas’s “Hate Me Now,” songs that in their truculence and incredulity proclaimed his innocence for him. He got caught again, in May of last year, ended up back in the Daily News—hot 97 dj “mister cee” charged with trying to pick up male prostitute, blared the headline—and then two days later, he was back on air, sitting across from his program director, Ebro. “Because I was like, ‘Cee, what the fuck. What are we doing?’ ” Ebro remembers. “We got on the air and had the conversation.”

Or, more accurately, didn’t, as Cee stammered out equivocations (“Even if I wanted to lie, that’s my choice”) and told the same lies he’d been telling his therapist and everyone else. All while a city of profoundly confused people listened in their cars and office buildings and headphones, wondering how the Hot 97 morning show had become a live broadcast of some unfathomable form of public therapy or performance art. “I don’t have any more questions,” Ebro said in disgust, ending the conversation.

Ebro says now that he had a good idea he was being lied to: “I had my suspicions.” But at the same time, he adds, “I’ve met people and have known people in my life that did not categorize themselves as gay, right?” So “in the back of my mind I’m thinking, ‘He just doesn’t categorize himself that way.’ ”

Cee had grown up in a conservative West Indian family, didn’t know how they’d react. And he’d come up in a rap era that grew less tolerant, from its first steps in downtown clubs in the late ’70s and early ’80s—where hip-hop fans and gay men and women used to stand side by side—to the ’90s, when Eazy-E died of AIDS, then thought by many to be a “gay” disease, and so got written out of the vanguard of rap history. Even fundamentally tolerant guys like Biggie, back then, might rhyme something like: Money and blood don’t mix, like two dicks and no bitch.

It didn’t matter that when Cee started getting caught, friends and other artists got in touch or sent their support. 50 Cent. Wyclef. Busta Rhymes. In 2011, Cee says, “I reached out to Jay Z for a favor, and he came through in less than a day.” Even then, he was afraid of what might happen if people learned the truth. Both his parents are dead. So is his grandfather. Now Cee takes care of his grandmother, his aunt, whoever needs help. “I hold my family down, man,” he says.

So he continued to lie. “It wasn’t even about losing the job. I was just afraid of what the perception was going to be about me and that people was still going to want to stand behind the Mister Cee brand,” he says. Promoters. People he worked with. And if they didn’t, “how was I going to be able to continue to support and take care of the people that I care about?”

Finally, in September—after three arrests that Cee will admit to, two Daily News articles, and one excruciating on-air interview—a blogger named Bimbo Winehouse, posing as a sex worker, made a video filmed inside Cee’s car as they negotiated a price for sex. Within a few days, the video was on the Internet. That day, September 11, Cee went on air and resigned, admitting nothing but that he believed it was untenable for the station to continue employing him.

While it is entirely possible that Mister Cee is not gay, he could be bisexual after all, the tone of the GQ piece proves he has yet to sort out his sexuality. Though he says he can’t see himself in a longterm relationship with a woman right now, when and if he does decide to settle down, I just hope he’s honest about his past and what that may mean for their future.

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  • Black Womanist

    This is one seriously confused individual.

  • mary burrell

    This is so dangerous. If he is have relations with men, then he needs to leave women alone. He seems confused.

  • I cannot believe the amount of gay-bashing in the comment section, clutch readers usually have such interesting points of view! Let this man figure out his sexuality on his own terms instead of being held accountable in this public way. The issue with STDs is NOT homosexuality or bisexuality – it’s a lack of protection! Being gay or bisexual does NOT mean that you automatically are a liar who infects people on purpose and that’s an incredibly homophobic thing to say. All ya’ll need to take a few steps back and see how YOU’RE increasing the problem of confused sexualities by guilting and blaming men who don’t have it all figured out.

    • Aria Wilson

      Lina,

      Let me say first, I agree that gay bashing is stupid and unnecessary.

      I actually read your comment first when I scrolled down to the comment section, since it was the last one posted. I then went to page 1 of the comments and read every last one.

      I only saw only ONE comment (perhaps others were removed) that could be remotely taken as “gay bashing”. All of the other ones were simply people stating he was “confused” or concern over the VERY REAL practice of DL men.

      Before I hear it ….YES, I understand that DL men come in all colors and stripes, but there is actual evidence that shows it IS more prevalent in some of our communities than others. But “gay bashing”? No one was calling gays names, or saying they are immoral or less than human or any other point that one would associate with “bashing”.

      Who said that he was “a liar who infects people on purpose” ? Was that comment removed? To some of the commenter’s points…I think they are pointing out that STD’s, especially HIV, is much more easily transmitted through anal sex than vaginal…that is just a FACT (the below is from a simple google search):

      “For example, there is an 18 times greater risk of HIV transmission through anal sex than through vaginal sex”

      -healthland.time.com/…/hiv-continues-to-spread-among-gay-men

      The anus contains many more capillaries and blood vessels that are miniscule and easily ruptured by a rough act such as sex, which in turn increases the likelihood of the virus being absorbed into the bloodstream. The rates of infection from anal sex are higher than through vaginal.

      So, yes, a part of the HIV epidemic DOES have to do with the DL phenomenon. Anal sex is more high risk than vaginal, and stating that does not mean one is “bashing” anybody. Those that engage in high risk sex then go back to their wives, girls or female booty calls…ARE an issue. So are women who do not use protection. So are straight men who do not use protection. But to pretend that engaging in gay sex is no more risky than other types or to imply that those that point this out are “bashing”, is, well….simply not true.

    • Thanks for responding! There were a few things implied and stated that I took issue with in the comments.

      1. Men can’t be bisexual. For some reason people feel that bisexuality among men doesn’t exist. For instance there were some comments here on him being confused because he couldn’t pick “one”. Sexuality exists on a spectrum and it’s very possible that men and women are interested in sleeping with both men and women. This is something I expect most educated people to understand applies to women AND men. For me reading that was highly offensive.

      2. Men who sleep with men are dangerous to black women (particularly those who aren’t public with it). There were a number of comments also calling Mister Cee dangerous because he potentially has had penetrating sex with men. First of all, this is just something people are guessing or assuming, there’s nothing out about that. Second, my point is that unprotected sex with untested individuals is dangerous PERIOD. Not to mention – women frequently engage in anal sex with men too! I will not have unprotected sex with an untested man regardless of if he has slept with men or only women previously. To pin my inability to practice safe sex on bisexual men or straight men who have had gay sexual experiences would be nothing short of homophobic.

      Can you see how comments about him being dangerous and the other things stated in these comments contribute to bashing of gays and bisexuals? When will we ask ourselves why men in our communities have trouble being out as gay or bisexual? Is it not because of our attitudes toward these men? That they are undesirable simply because of their sexualities.

      Another point: numbers like the one’s you quoted can be extremely damaging when used in an irresponsible way. IF it’s used to further promote safe sex practices it is good to use those numbers. But when it is used to single out one group of people that is hated and spat on as it is – that’s when it becomes a problem. We need to NOT lose sight of who our real enemies are and what is truly a danger to us as black women – it is NOT black bisexual men (or straight men who have had gay experiences) but in this case unprotected sex across the board and issues of emasculation and shunning of gay and bisexual men (the reason why they aren’t open with their sexualities).

  • @TR
    I have wonder stuff like that sometimes. I don’t know if sexuality is really this big confusing thing or if people tend to make it that way. I have heard of men saying that are attract to transsexual who still have their man parts but shake at the thought of having sex with a full man. If a woman has sex with a transsexual who still has its other parts is she considered a lesbian or straight? Then I have heard of people try to argue that women who look at gay porn are sick but men who look at lesbian porn are not? It’s just one big ball of confusion. I just want people to be honest with themselves and other people they might have sex with. If you can’t be honest with yourself than I don’t expect you to be honest with others.

    • TR

      I understand your sentiment exactly. My real issue here is some are calling Mr. Cee confused. I tend to agree with them. The problem is we can call Mr. Cee confused, but we can’t call the men who dress up like women that he is soliciting confused. If we do that we are “intolerant” and possibly Gay/Trans bashing.

      Why is one man confused and worthy of ridicule, but the other has discovered himself and is worthy of encouragement?