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Oct 10 2016
Pulling POCUS: A Chat With Sexy Singer Jay Armstrong Johnson Comments (0)

5.208545(Image by Matthew Murphy for

Beautiful out singer Jay Armstrong Johnson just released his latest album, Jay Armstrong Johnson—Live at Feinstein's/54 Below (Broadway Records)—and he's 51wUqJBamoL._SS500
celebrating with a bash at the titular venue in NYC on October 30. Word is it will be Halloween-themed, which is right up the Hocus Pocus fanatic's alley!

Jay's also an actor (you may recognize from Quantico) who's just been cast as the straight guy in a sitcom version of the popular Web series My Gay Roommate.

Check out my interview with the talented crooner and actor below ...

Boy Culture: How did you curate your new album/show—why did you choose the tracks you did?

Jay Armstrong Johnson: Over the last three-and-a-half-years, I've been keeping a particularly lengthy note in the notes section on my phone. This note was completely dedicated to a potential solo concert that I hoped would come to fruition. I would hear a song and it would trigger a memory or inspire a thought, and each time I would write it down in my notes. When Feinstein's/54 Below approached me (shortly after On the Town on Broadway closed) about a three-night headliner, I jumped at the chance to take my notes I accumulated and create my dream show. What I found was that many songs had such different styles and vibes, so I played into that idea of a very eclectic set. 

BC: Which songs are the most unexpected? Do you like trying stuff that isn't up your usual alley/isn't the most obvious materials?

JAJ: I think have a religious tune was pretty unexpected for me. I have been grappling with the complexities of religion for as long I can remember, but what I simply could not deny was the lasting effect religion has had on my musical education. It truly was the start of my musical expression in a public sphere.

BC: What can fans expect from your Feinstein's/54 Below show?

JAJ: People can expect many tunes from my album to be pillars in our night, but really they should expect me to be living my life long dream of BECOMING Winifred Sanderson (Bette Midler in Hocus Pocus). Halloween is my favorite time of year, so I thank all ticket holders for indulging my dress up dreams. 

Giphy(GIF via Disney)

BC: Why are people your age obsessed with HOCUS POCUS?!

JAJ: 'Cause it's the number-one best movie of ALL TIME! 

BC: What are some memorable fan reactions you've gotten?

JAJ: My most memorable fan reactions usually come from friends in the LGBT community. They share their stories of struggle and acceptance, and we are able to share a common bond in that regard. I was bullied incessantly from the third grade to ninth grade, but thankfully had mentors and teachers who lifted me above the fray. If I can be that as an artist and public figure for those struggling like I did, then I feel as though I'm using my art to breed love and acceptance to those who need it most.

BC: What would be a dream gig for you?

JAJ: Playing Floyd in Adam Guettel's Floyd Collins in its very first Broadway production. (It's only been off-Broadway)

BC: How did you get involved with My Gay Roommate?

JAJ: It felt as though it were written in the stars, to be completely honest. I had heard about Noam Ash and the Web series for a while just because of the exposure it was getting, but the week I got the offer was one of the more synchronistic weeks of my life. I kept running into people involved in the project, and even had my astrologist mention the project to me a few days before I got the offer because he had given a reading to another cast member days prior. All the interconnectivity of this cast and creatives feels serendipitous and very exciting.  

BC: Have you ever  had any real-life unusual roommate situations?

JAJ: Too many to count! I've had one roommate and I've had seven. I've couch-surfed from Texas to NYC. I've gotten out of a roommate snafu where they lost my lease in the mail and allowed me to escape the unstable person with which  NYU paired me via off-campus housing. I got sued by a roommate who kicked me out for “not paying rent.” I know, right? SUED! I won the case because when one gets kicked out of their living space, constructive eviction, therefore I should not be held responsible for the rent.