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SXSW Comedy Festival Announces Initial 2022 Lineup

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South by Southwest® (SXSW®) Conference and Festivals (March 11-20, 2022) unveiled the initial SXSW Comedy Festival lineup as part of the 2022 SXSW Festival. A unique gathering of performers from all reaches of entertainment, SXSW is an environment where tomorrow’s most promising comedians can perform alongside and mingle with icons from the world of film and television. For the first time since 2019, the SXSW Comedy Festival is back in full swing with a slate of in-person stand-up showcases, podcast tapings, improv performances, conversations, and more. In honor of the comedic institutions that have persevered over the years, the festival has partnered with a handful of influential comedy venues and presenters to join us in Austin and celebrate the return to live comedy events.

All SXSW registrants (Platinum, Interactive, Music, and Film) are welcome to all SXSW Comedy showcases and conference sessions. Film wristband holders can attend SXSW Comedy showcases from Friday, March 11 through Saturday, March 19 and Music wristband holders, Monday, March 14 through Saturday, March 19.

2022 SXSW Comedy Festival Participants:
Alyssa Stonoha • Andy Haynes • Anthony Atamanuik • Blair Socci • Bonnie McFarlane • Bruce McCulloch • Byron Bowers • Camilla Cleese • Danielle Schneider • Doug Benson • Dulcé Sloan • Eddie Pepitone • Eleanor Kerrigan • Emma Willman • Ian Lara • Jessica Michelle Singleton • Jim Gaffigan • Joe DeRosa • John Cleese • John Gemberling • Jon Daly • Kiry Shabazz • Liza Treyger • Logan Guntzelman • Marina Franklin • Mary Lynn Rajskub • Matt Besser • Matthew Broussard • Mike Lawrence • Mike Yard • Mitra Jouhari • Nick Thune • Punkie Johnson • Rich Vos • Ricky Velez • Rosebud Baker • Sandy Honig • Scott Thompson • Sean Patton • Shane Torres • Stuart Goldsmith • Vanessa Gonzalez • Yamaneika Saunders   

Plus surprise guests and more!

2022 SXSW Comedy Festival Special Programs Featuring: 
Adult Swim Presents Three Busy Debras • ASSSSCAT • The Comedian’s Comedian • A Night at the Comedy Store • Comedy with the Cleeses • The Creek & The Cave • Doug Loves Movies • Find Your Beach • Gotham Comedy Club • improv4humans • Matt Besser’s 420 Show • Roast Battle • The Stand NYC • Wide World of Dougs • Would You Bang Him?

The festival will kick off on Friday, March 11th with a discussion led by legendary comedian John Cleese. As the most outspoken member of the vanguard Monty Python comedy troupe, John Cleese has been contributing his signature silliness tocomedy, film, and television for over 50 years. A panel of up-and-coming comedians join the comedy icon for an informal conversation to discuss his groundbreaking, often provocative career and working in comedy today.

The following night, Cleese and daughter Camilla take the stage for a variety hour of comedy and chat. Equal parts familial love and cantankerous banter, their onstage dynamic is a special blend that only a father-daughter duo can provide. Their show weaves in audience interaction to make every night truly unique and special.

Throughout the various challenges of the pandemic, comedy scenes around the country found ways to adapt and persist. Comedy venues proved to be the lifeblood of the community, and SXSW has again partnered with some of these institutions to reflect and celebrate their vital cultural importance. A renowned launching pad for New York’s funniest, Gotham Comedy Club will return to the festival with a killer lineup of comedians from their famous stage. The Stand NYC, a fixture of the local scene, will join the festival with Rich Vos and Bonnie McFarlane’s comedy game show Would You Bang Him? as well as their first in-person SXSW showcase. The Creek & The Cave fostered a massive wave of comedy and have recently relocated to Austin. In their first year as an official SXSW venue they’ll showcase a selection of their favorite NY standups.

SXSW is honored to host A Night at The Comedy Store, the kickoff celebration for the 50th anniversary of LA’s iconic venue. A roster of Comedy Store regulars will pay homage to the enduring legacy of the storied stage they call home. This year’s festival will feature a live recording of the Comedy Store Podcast, as well a weekend of the anything-goes battle of wits: Roast Battle. Host Brian Moses, DJ Coach Tea, and dynamic hype crew The Wave (Willie Hunter, Jamar Neighbors) will be joined by guest judges who will preside over three rowdy nights of unpredictable trash-talk.

Upright Citizen’s Brigade (UCB) cofounder, Matt Besser, returns with another slate of shows. He’ll lead UCB’s wildly popular ASSSSCAT, featuring true tales from celebrity guests and inspired scenes from some of today’s most skilled performers. UCB favorites Anthony Atamanuik (The President Show), John Gemberling (Broad City), and Danielle Schneider (Hacks, Bitch Sesh) will join in the fun.

Besser will also present perhaps the most star-studded show of the festival, Neil Young’s Covid Hootenanny. Neil Young (Besser) banters and bickers with a who’s who of “celebrity” guests invited to express their opinions on everything covid in this once-in-a-lifetime concert event. Another jam session of sorts, Nick Thune is back with Riffs and Riff-Raff, a mixed bag of weirdness, complete with outlandish characters, nonsensical lyrics, and improvised songs.

Adult Swim will debut a sneak peak of the second season of Three Busy Debras, the eccentric satire series created by Mitra Jouhari, Sandy Honig, and Alyssa Stonoha. The trio will perform live with friends of the show Anthony Atamanuik, Francesca D’Uva, and Ikechukwu Ufomadu.

The schedule also features a slate of live podcast recordings. Doug Benson will record his hit game-show, Doug Loves Movies, as well as his new show Wide World of Dougs with Doug Mellard. Stuart Goldsmith will return with live editions of his podcast, The Comedian’s Comedian. This time around he’ll talk with Jim Gaffigan, Dulce Sloan, and Eddie Pepitone. Matt Besser’s improv4humans, a stalwart of the improv comedy scene, will also return to the SXSW stage for multiple performances. The shows will feature a talented roster of improvisers, with one recording featuring musical guest ME REX. Rosebud Baker and Andy Haynes started their podcast Find Your Beach on the first day of quarantine and now the newlyweds bring it to SXSW for their first live recording.

SXSW Film Festival 

Featured performers will also appear in an array of exciting new films debuting at the SXSW Film Festival. Sketch comedy pioneers Dave Foley, Bruce McCulloch, Kevin McDonald, Mark McKinney and Scott Thompson of The Kids in the Hall will be in attendance to debut the new documentary, The Kids in the Hall: Comedy Punks. They’ll also make another appearance at a featured discussion session about their film and enduring legacy. James Morosini’s debut feature I Love My Dad includes rising star Ricky Velez, comedy icon Jim Gaffigan stars in the buzzy new film Linoleum, and festival favorite Sean Patton can be seen in The Prank

SXSW dedicates itself to helping creative people achieve their goals. Founded in 1987 in Austin, Texas, SXSW is best known for its conference and festivals that celebrate the convergence of tech, film, music, education, and culture. An essential destination for global professionals, the annual March event features sessions, music and comedy showcases, film screenings, exhibitions, professional development and a variety of networking opportunities. SXSW proves that the most unexpected discoveries happen when diverse topics and people come together. SXSW 2022 will take place March 11 – 20, 2022. For more information, please visit sxsw.com. To register for the event, please visit sxsw.com/attend.

SXSW 2022 Comedy Festival is sponsored by Mike’s Hard Lemonade, Blockchain Creative Labs, Volkswagen, and The Austin Chronicle.

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United Africa Organization and 5,315 hopeful immigrants sue Biden administration

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On Tuesday, Chicago-based United Africa Organization and over five thousand Diversity Visa (DV) Lottery applicants filed a lawsuit against the Biden Administration in the District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, challenging the unlawful withholding of Diversity Visas. (Complaint available upon request.)
As part of their legal challenge, Plaintiffs attack the lawfulness Secretary Antony Blinken’s policy changes implemented through a November 2021 cable with the subject line, “Recalibration of Consular Services Prioritization at Posts Abroad.”
Immigrant plaintiffs all entered the FY-2022 lottery in late 2020 and were selected in May 2021 from a pool of millions of entries through a computer-generated random drawing. They should each be eligible 55,000 visas that should be issued in FY-2022 (between October 1, 2021 and September 20, 2022).[1] Immigrant plaintiffs followed the rules and submitted their applications. They made plans to build a new life in America. Yet, the Biden administration, still beholden to restrictive immigration policies adopted during the Trump administration, stands in their way.
Modernly, the Diversity Visa lottery program is responsible for the largest percentage of African and Black immigration to the United States. Yet, according to the CATO Institute, Africans Face Steepest Decline in Immigrant Visas under Biden.
Fasika Alem, Programs Director of United African Organization, said:
“The administration’s decision to make the DV lottery program a low priority for visa issuances is decreasing African immigration to the U.S, and that outcome is not consistent with the country’s values.”
Alexandra George, Chicago-based co-counsel for Plaintiffs, said:
“President Biden campaigned on promises to support the DV lottery, but the administration’s own policies are the biggest hurdle for African winners. These broken promises harm thousands of real people and tarnish Biden’s legacy.”
Jana Al-Akhras, co-counsel for Plaintiffs, said:
“The DV Program, its selectees, and its recipients are a vital aspect of our country’s immigration process — the importance of which cannot be overstated. The Biden Administration’s attempt to undermine this program harms our nation and runs contrary to the express will of Congress. We urge the Biden Administration to consider the harm that incurs as a result of their deprioritzation of these very worthy applicants.”
 
Case number: NDIL: 1:22-cv-02599
 
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Watch: Michael Blackson’s fiancée allows him one sidechick a month

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American-based Ghanaian Comedian and Actor, Michael Blackson and his fiancée, Rada have revealed they have made some special arrangements in their relationship.

The couple made an appearance on the Shade Room and revealed that they have both agreed to allow Michael have one “sidechick” every month.

In a conversation with Thembi from the Shade Room, Rada explained why she’s allowed Michael to have a sidechick every month.

“The reason why is I’ve been in a long term relationship and I’ve said it before, you having sex with the same individual for years, it gets boring and I need some excitement in the bedroom,” Rada said.

When asked if Michael also allows Rada to have a side piece, he responded;

“I mean, she’s allowed to have any female she wants and not a man because we don’t need another penis in the relationship.”

Watch rest of their conversation below;

Michael Blackson and Rada have been engaged since July 2021 after two years of dating.

In May, 2021, Rada announced on social media that she had broken off the engagement because she was not going to be lied to. However, the two got back together immediately and have been lovey lovey ever since.

Michael also brought her back home to Ghana during one of his numerous visits to introduce her to his family back home in Ghana.

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Drug dealer in Mac Miller case sentenced to over 17 years for fentanyl distribution

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One of the three men charged in relation to Mac Miller‘s 2018 death from a drug overdose has been sentenced to 17 years and six months in prison. (more…)

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Moneybagg Yo And Kodak Black Team Up For Heartfelt New Single/Video “Rocky Road”

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Photo Credit: “Bodi” aka Botti Denton

Today, Memphis superstar Moneybagg Yo drops “Rocky Road,” a heartfelt, Kodak Black-assisted new single that affirms the pair’s status as the faces of modern, complex street rap. “Rocky Road” also arrives with an evocative video and is now available at all digital retailers via CMG/N-less Entertainment/Interscope Records. With this release, Bagg is featured on the cover of New Music Daily on Apple Music Listen HERE.

Cruising over emotive keys, Kodak kicks things off with a declaration of loyalty: “Tryna get to my hoe but the Perkys got me froze / Been doing my baby momma wrong and leaving her at home / I cannot leave you on your own, we made this child together.” For his part,Moneybagg injects memories of the hustle and damaged romance: “Out there standing by the pole, selling dope to buy some clothes / Cause I knew that attract the hoes, until one left my heart so cold / I just didn’t know no better made me hard on the next forever.” Soul-baring yet of the streets, “Rocky Road” is Moneybagg and Kodak at their best.

The video also dwells in that zone. Equal parts gritty, evocative, thoughtful, and real, the Young Chang-directed clip spins a familiar narrative as a man who’s already balancing life’s complexities finds himself at a crossroads: how to respond to another man’s reckless violence. The two rappers bear witness, occupying a perspective both within the scene and adjacent enough to have eyes on the bigger picture. It’s a space Bagg’s held down for a long time now. Watch HERE.

As a pioneer of his craft the Memphis native has been able to garner a cult fan base and prove his artistry as one of the best to do it. After sharing his album Time Served, Bagg continued to prove his aptitude and magnetism with the release of his fourth studio record, A Gangsta’s Pain, which debuted No. 1 on the Billboard 200. The critically acclaimed project features notable features with the likes of Pharrell, Lil Wayne, Future, and Jhené Aiko to name a few and was accredited “Best of 2021” by several media outlets including The New York Times, NPR, Billboard, Fader, Rolling Stone, Complex. In addition to his album going No. 1 he also topped the Urban Radio chart four times consecutively with “Said Sum” “Time Today” and “Wockesha,” and, “Scorpio.” A Gangsta’s Pain was the fourth highest selling rap album of the year and ultimately led to his performances on Jimmy Kimmel Live, The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, a live performance on the BET Awards and several award nominations (BET Hip Hop Award, MTV VMA, iHeartRadio Award, etc.) As a man on the go Moneybagg Yo also starred in a Nike Commercial, helped develop artists on his own label, Bread Gang, and continues to explore several business ventures with his latest being Vior Water. In 2022 the Certified Speaker will maintain his unbreakable hot streak and continue to immerse himself in various projects. With “Rocky Road” at his back, Moneybagg Yo is all set to continue his trend of leveling up with each month.

Moneybagg Yo – “Rocky Road ft. Kodak Black” eSingle
Retail: http://MoneybaggYo.lnk.to/RockyRoad
Amazon Unlimited: http://MoneybaggYo.lnk.to/RockyRoad/amazonmusic
Apple Music: http://MoneybaggYo.lnk.to/RockyRoad/applemusic
Audiomack: http://MoneybaggYo.lnk.to/RockyRoad/audiomack
Deezer: http://MoneybaggYo.lnk.to/RockyRoad/deezer
iTunes: http://MoneybaggYo.lnk.to/RockyRoad/itunes
Pandora: http://MoneybaggYo.lnk.to/RockyRoad/pandora
Soundcloud: http://MoneybaggYo.lnk.to/RockyRoad/soundcloud
Spotify: http://MoneybaggYo.lnk.to/RockyRoad/spotify
Tidal: http://MoneybaggYo.lnk.to/RockyRoad/tidal
YouTube Music: http://MoneybaggYo.lnk.to/RockyRoad/youtubemusic

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Kali Uchis wins Top Latin Female Artist and Top Latin Song at Billboard Music Awards

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Grammy-winning artist Kali Uchis won Top Latin Female Artist and Top Latin Song for “telepatía” at the 2022 Billboard Music Awards last night, where she was a finalist in four categories total.
Additionally, Uchis is nominated for six Latin American Music Awards this year for New Artist of the Year, Song of the Year for “telepatía,” Favorite Artist – Female, Favorite Artist – Pop, Favorite Song – Pop for “telepatía” and Viral Song of the Year for “telepatía.”
Uchis recently won Favorite Latin Song for “telepatía” at the 2021 American Music Awards. The track has accumulated more than 2 billion global streams after hitting #1 on Billboard’s Latin Airplay and Latin Pop Airplay charts and topping Latin Digital Song Sales for ten weeks straight. It is the longest running Spanish-language song by a solo act on the Billboard Hot 100 this decade (23 weeks). Additionally, her Spanish-language album Sin Miedo (del Amor y Otros Demonios) ∞was nominated for Best Música Urbana Album at the 64th Annual Grammy Awards.
Last year, Uchis won her first Billboard Latin Music Award for Latin Pop Album of the Year, her first Grammy for Best Dance Recording with Kaytranada and her first Premios Nuestra Tierraand Univision Premios Juventud awards. She also performed at the Hispanic Heritage Awards on PBS, where she was also recognized as the 2021 Inspira Honoree.
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Photos: See all the looks from the 2022 Billboard Music Awards

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The 2022 Billboard Music Awards took over the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas on Sunday (May 15), with Sean “Diddy” Combs hosting and performing. (more…)

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