Upon occasion I get asked about one or more of the names I go by. Last night after our live-stream of Drag the Dice Throne was one of those times.
My legal name is James Brown and I go by Jim though there were times in my childhood when I was called Jamie. I have so many friend groups that I can't keep track of them all, but in one of them there was another James, and for reasosn that I've forgotten most of the group knew me as James, but I made a flippant remark that if Jennifer Lopez could go by the moniker of J-Lo that I, James Brown, could go by J-BRO! So that variation on my name has followed me around in various incarnations for a decade and a half or more.
When I took up the art of drag and became an AMAB drag king in 2016, my original name was Mr. Soj Inny. My idea was to use crass humor and pandering misogyny to be a satyrical stereotype of drag queen behavior which would hopefully be received as parody by audiences seeing as how it was coming from a "male-presenting" performer. I didn't really succeed in getting that across.
So when my partner - Rayven Alnite - and I launched our own drag troup, Haus Alnite, I rebranded as the Glam Daddy of the Haus - Brock N. Alnite (a play on rockin' all night to pair up with rave'n all night).
Layman Kingsford is the pen name I adopted in high school. Writing has always been a passion of mine and my college degree is a combination of music and creative writing. Layman is a family name from my mother's side that is not being passed along to my generation or beyond. Kingsford is a family name from my dad's side that ended with him and it's a name I really like and wish he had passed on to me or my brothers, though I would prefer it to have been me.
So the combination of those two names is my small way of keeping those family names in circulation.