For more than four decades Blondie Strange has graced the iconic Clermont Lounge with her eccentric talents and larger-than-life personality.
Blondie first took the stage of the adult club back in 1978. Her favorite past times are crushing empty Budweiser and PBR cans with her breasts without flinching, and reading and writing poetry inspired by the likes of Charles Bukowski and Allen Ginsberg.
Born in Dayton, Ohio, she began dancing at the age of 19. In 2011, she told Atlanta Magazine that at this time she was the "only colored girl dancing for a bunch of rednecks and bikers." Since then, she has become an Atlanta staple.
"It’s what I do - what I love - dancing and entertaining for almost 50 years!" she once said in an Instagram caption.
The entertainer has risen to a sort of celebrity status locally during her tenure at Atlanta's oldest strip club and gained the affection of the joint's A-list clientele.
According to the Clermont website, Bill Murray, Robert De Niro, P!nk, Carey Hart, Kid Rock, Woody Harrelson and Morgan Freeman have all stopped in for a visit while passing through town.
Anthony Bourdain once declared "this place should be a national landmark," when visiting with celebrity chef Alton Brown in an episode of The Layover.
Lady Gaga went on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon to share an anecdote of her night at the Clermont Lounge when a dancer gave her some advice during a sultry night out.
Anita Rae Strange aka Blondie is a queer Black artist and sex worker. She has the innate ability to shine in the crossroads of campy burlesque routines and important cultural significance, all while forming human connections.
During the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, when the Clermont Lounge was forced to close its doors, her manager Katy Richards and the community raised more than $5,000 to ensure her food, shelter and medical needs would be taken care of during the unprecedented times.
Jon Watts, the filmmaker behind her 2012 biographical film AKA Blondie told Atlanta Magazine “She is so much a part of Atlanta, and Atlanta is indelibly part of her."
Navigating modern life in the South can feel unpredictable, but Blondie's ability to entertain and overcome remains a constant in the Big Peach.