Alexandra Cooper has the power to fell dozens of relationships. Just 26 years old, Cooper is arguably the most successful woman in podcasting, drawing on her own experiences with men to dole out sex advice to millions of listeners on her weekly podcast, Call Her Daddy. “In one episode, I was jokingly like, ‘If he does this, break up with him,’” she says. “Then I got hundreds of girls DMing me being like, ‘O.K., I did it,’ and I’m like, ‘Wait, hold on, let’s make sure that’s the right choice for you specifically.’”
Cooper and I are sitting in the lounge of the Greenwich Hotel in New York City. She leans in conspiratorially as she tells the story, while keeping one wary but eager eye on a group of girls in the lobby who have either spotted her by happenstance or tracked her down based on clues from her frequent Instagram Stories. Though she’s the youngest of three, Cooper exudes a big-sister energy that attracts young women—mostly ages 18 to 26, according to her agent—and she cultivates these relationships: between recording sessions in her Los Angeles home, she’s often direct-messaging one of her 2.2 million Instagram followers, who call themselves the Daddy Gang, about their sexual quandaries and romantic woes. Recently, after a listener found out her boyfriend had cheated on her, Cooper advised her what to do in real time: “I’m like, get your stuff, call an Uber, get out of there, go to a friend’s place. I would have loved to have someone do that for me in high school or college.”
It’s that sway with a coveted demographic that recently earned her a $60 million three-year deal with Spotify, according to Variety. A Spotify spokesperson said the streaming service does not confirm contract figures but indicated the deal was part of a larger strategy to recruit big names, including the Obamas, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, Dax Shepard and Joe Rogan. Unlike those other podcasters, however, Cooper was a relative unknown when she started her show. “If you look at the charts, there’s not a lot of people that have become big from a podcast that didn’t already have platforms,” she says. “Everyone was an actor, a singer, a comedian. So I take great pride in that.” The Interactive Advertising Bureau predicts that ad revenue for podcasting will exceed $1 billion this year and $2 billion by 2023, and Spotify has been expanding aggressively into this space. Call Her Daddy is airing there exclusively starting July 21, and Cooper is developing future projects with the company.
Now, as she moves into this rarified circle of podcasting elite, she’s trying to figure out how to advance a show that has, by her admission, sold itself with sex. “I’m a different person than I was when I started the show,” she says. “And I’m O.K. with that.” These days she’s still cracking jokes about oral sex and masturbation but also speaking more about mental health and inviting guests on the show to talk about sexual experiences that are different from her own as a straight white cisgender woman. She talks a lot about female empowerment, which she says has always been an undercurrent of the show, even if the salacious stories were what drew people in. But in recent episodes, Cooper has also given women pointers on how to ensure you arrive fresh-faced to to meet a guy after a plane ride and what to post on social media to make a man jealous, advice that’s often positioned as a way to boost women’s confidence—and to give them the answers they’re seeking—but which also suggests that a man’s approval or attention is the end goal.
As she tries to evolve and expand the brand, Cooper seems sure she can thread the needle and bring her fans along with her. “I want to be the biggest podcaster in the world,” she says. “I’ve got this great big deal now. I want to prove to the world that I am worth this.”
Call Her Daddy began in 2018 as a two-woman show: Cooper and her then roommate Sofia Franklyn would swap raunchy stories and offer up judgment-free counsel to both men and women. They’d advise someone on how to catch a cheater and advise a cheater on how to get away with an affair. The podcast shot from 12,000 downloads to 2 million in just the first two months.
Then, last year, their friendship and business partnership went up in flames during a contract renegotiation with Barstool Sports, the media company that previously hosted Call Her Daddy.The details, even for diehard members of the Daddy Gang, are murky. Both women believed they weren’t being paid enough. Both believed that was at least in part because they were women. Negotiations deteriorated.Who was to blame for what is hard to parse. Cooper decided to helm Call Her Daddy alone and Franklyn started her own show a few months later. Each woman has shared her perspective on her own podcast. But both have said that certain men wanted cuts of what they, as two women, had created together. “We were huge, but that drama just blew it the f-ck up in a way that I can’t even explain,” Franklyn said in a recent interview on the YouTube channel No Jumper. The disagreement became so filled with vitriol that Cooper had to ask her fans to stop bullying Franklyn. “I still have things that are lingering from that, and it happened a year ago,” Franklyn went on. For her part, Cooper felt so distrustful of men in the business world after her experience that she now says she wants to hire only women for her Spotify team.
It wasn’t just the falling-out with a friend that upset Cooper but the coverage of their breakup. “We were being deemed bitchy. We were having a ‘catfight.’ And I’m like, This is not a catfight. We’re talking about a multimillion-dollar brand that is on the line,” says Cooper. “If this were two men, that would not be the conversation.”
During the negotiation, Cooper posted a video on YouTube wearing relatively little makeup and explained the business behind the podcast. It went viral. “That YouTube video changed my life,” she says. “Before, people were like, ‘She’s the blond girl who talks about sex.’ When I put out the video, everyone was like, ‘Wait, this girl’s smart. She knows what she’s talking about with IP and trademarks and conversion rates.’”
Anyone who believed Cooper was all sex tales and mirror selfies had failed to recognize that she had, in a sense, been preparing for this job her whole life. She grew up in Pennsylvania with a psychologist mother who often emphasized EQ over IQ and a sports-TV producer father. She was encouraged to voice her feelings and spent much of her childhood with a camera in her hand. She’d type out the lines of The Devil Wears Prada as she watched, then hand out scripts to friends to playact in the basement.
Her love of media actually hampered her sex education. Her private school offered health class as an elective at the same time that it offered a video-production class, and Cooper lobbied the school to let her take the latter. “I never had a sex-ed class ever in my life,” she says. Instead of getting clinical instruction on things like human anatomy and reproduction, she turned to reality shows like Laguna Beach and The Hills to better understand women’s sex lives. It wasn’t until college, when Cooper took her first gender-studies course, that she realized “the thread between all those shows was that the women were the drama, that the women were so emotional.”
She played Division I soccer at Boston University, where she was a film-and-television major. One day, she recalls, a professor pulled her aside. “He said, ‘I just want to be very honest with you: You’re not going to be taken seriously in this industry because of the way you look. So you’re actually going to have to work a little bit harder,’” she says. “It was the first moment in my life where I was like, Should I dye my hair? Should I wear baggy clothes?” But when the same professor asked students to submit silent films anonymously for a class competition, he unwittingly chose hers as the winner.
It was during her sophomore year that Cooper met a Red Sox player she would prefer remain nameless. It was her first serious relationship. He was more than a decade older than her, had just won the World Series, drove a fancy car and had what she describes as “f-ck you money.” “I’m in his penthouse after my last class of the day before [soccer] practice, and all I knew was, ‘I don’t want to lose this.’ It was intoxicating,” she said in a recent episode of the podcast.
That mindset served as the germ of the idea for Call Her Daddy, though the podcast wouldn’t come until years later. Cooper found herself in a relationship with a drastic power imbalance, and she wanted to figure out how to be in control of the situation. “He opened my eyes to truly some of the most psychotic, intense games to be played in a relationship,” she told her listeners. “I think having that be my first experience so young in college f-cking with this dude who was way ahead of me in terms of dating and girls … it was like he put me through training camp, and I came out not really alive.” She would mimic the manipulation she had experienced in future relationships, and on the podcast describes a time in her life when she was flying across the country to meet up with famous athletes in hotel rooms. She pursued these relationships, she says, because the men were emotionally unavailable—and often literally unavailable because of travel.
When she was laid off from an ad-sales job in New York City shortly after graduating, and surviving on unemployment checks, she signed up for Seeking Arrangements, a service that allowed men to pay her for dates. “The goal was I never wanted to do anything with these men, it was just to go get drinks and dinner, and by the end of the night have enough money for rent,” she explained on the podcast. She always brought a friend to sit in the back of the bar to make sure nothing went awry. “We did crazy fun sh-t like that, though in retrospect, I want everyone to be careful. I don’t even know if you should be on that site.”
I ask her whether she feels any responsibility toward young fans who want to mimic her trajectory and seek out romances with celebrities, especially since she now realizes some of those relationships were toxic. “I would not change any of the things that happened to me,” she says. “Those hotel moments, or whatever, they all taught me something. And yes, of course, the caliber I was doing it, people maybe think of that as aspirational. But we all go through our sh-t. But you’re going to be able to figure it out.”
Cooper is hardly the first woman to talk candidly about sex—mainstream shows like Sex and the City and Girls have tackled taboo topics, as have Amy Schumer, Iliza Shlesinger, Ali Wong and Chelsea Handler in their comedy acts. (Handler was the first guest Cooper had on the show when Call Your Daddy became a Spotify exclusive.) Yet Cooper has built a direct relationship with fans like few others have. Podcasting is an intimate format. Listeners seek out the same voice every week, and the best shows can feel like you’re eavesdropping on a group of friends. That’s particularly true in Cooper’s case: she reveals explicit anecdotes that most people would share with only their closest confidants. “She’s so honest,” says Heaven Palffy, a 19-year-old student at Georgia State University who first bonded with her now roommate over Call Her Daddy and who is an active member of the fan Subreddit. “She doesn’t sugarcoat anything.”
Encouraging frank conversation among women may build a much needed community, but when Cooper’s agent, Oren Rosenbaum, head of emerging platforms at United Talent Agency, was shopping the show last year, it was sometimes hard to get her a meeting. “You see the title, you make an assumption about the show, you write her off as a super salacious good-looking girl who talks about sex, and say, ‘That’s not my thing,’ without spending one minute looking at the content,” he says. “But when they would take the meeting, they would immediately realize Alex is incredibly savvy and knows exactly what she’s doing.”
If society puts a woman like Cooper in a box, is she better off confounding assumptions about her or playing into them in order to succeed? The gender politics of Call Her Daddy is complicated. Browse her Instagram feed of bikini photos and it becomes difficult to disentangle how much those photos promote women’s body confidence and how much they capitalize on the male gaze. On a recent podcast, she talked about hiding her face from her boyfriend because she had not penciled in her eyebrows. Implicit is that idea that women have to look a certain way for their partners, even in the most intimate moments. “I was thinking about that even when I was saying it,” she admits. But she says she would have done the same thing if she were in a room of women. “That’s still an insecurity of mine. It really had nothing to do with men,” she says—an idea that’s debatable depending on who you think defines the standards of American beauty.
Then there’s the fact that Cooper grew her following with Barstool Sports, which has a reputation as a hotbedof toxicmasculinity. Barstool’s founder Dave Portnoy said on the Call Her Daddy podcast that he realized in his first meeting with Cooper that “this is not just some blond bimbo.” (Barstool did not respond to multiple requests for an interview. The company is still handling Call Her Daddy’s merchandising.) Cooper says she does not agree with everything Portnoy says but has never personally had an issue with him. “People are always like, ‘Why didn’t you leave?’ Where did you want me to go?” she says. “Instead of running from the problems, I stayed. I fought until I could say one of the biggest shows on Barstool was led by a woman.”
On the podcast, Cooper executes a women’s version of locker-room talk, something she started thinking about in actual locker rooms during her soccer-playing days. “I would always see a divide,” she says. There were the girls who were comfortable with getting personal, and those who weren’t. “In one-on-one convos, they wanted to talk about it,” she says of the less forthcoming group. “They just didn’t know how—maybe because they didn’t have the experience I had as a child where my parents were like, Say whatever you want to say.”
Given that we engaged in a nationwide conversation about locker-room talk not long ago, when a tape surfaced of Donald Trump casting women as objects to be grabbed, I ask her if there isn’t an argument to be made that the locker-room talk she engages in gives men permission to do their own misogynist version of it? “I don’t think we should stray away from something just because men have historically been the ones to own it,” she says. “I want to own it and do it better.” She characterizes her approach as “respectful” and “elevated,” but those are not the first words that come to mind when you hear the crass language she uses in recounting her sexual encounters. To her credit, she doesn’t identify her partners, instead assigning them code names, but she says just enough that at times her fans scramble to Reddit to try to figure out who she is referring to.
Cooper says she wants her brand to be one of female empowerment, but she is also, at least for now, careful about how she talks about the topic. When I tell her the bio her representatives sent me marketed her new Spotify era as “feminist,” she looked at me skeptically. “Have I promoted it like that?” While she seems genuine in her desire to help women navigate power dynamics in relationships with men, she resists exploring why that power structure exists. She talks about the emergency contraception Plan B—with segments on who should pay for it or stories about men who insist on watching women take it after sex—but not about how difficult it is to acquire in some places. She insists her listeners don’t want her to talk politics. Beg her not to, in fact. “I’m a comedy podcast,” she says.
Her hesitancy extends beyond questions of women’s empowerment. I ask why she didn’t post a vaccine selfie and if she felt like she had an obligation to do so given her platform. “I don’t want to talk about my political beliefs,” she says. “And I actually haven’t seen a lot of people asking me to share that because I think my listeners know that’s not Alex’s lane.” The one exception has been Black Lives Matter, which she felt she couldn’t stay silent about last year, and so she used a segment of her podcast to point listeners to places to donate, books to read and documentaries to watch. As a white woman of privilege, she says, she wants to educate herself and be fully informed on any topic before she speaks about it. “But will I eventually maybe take more of a stance? Maybe. Maybe.”
The day I meet Cooper, she has just returned from the Hamptons. While other celebrities cloistered on Long Island, posting nary a selfie, Cooper celebrated the Fourth of July at the vacation hotspot by documenting every bar hop and hangover on social media. The gossip Instagram account Deux Moi posted about Cooper getting kicked out of a bar, only for her to drop a podcast episode days later, full of voice memos taken on the evening in question, to reveal her side of the story. It wound up an undramatic tale: the bouncer forgot to give Cooper and her friends the wristbands needed for the bar. Still, Page Sixran a piece heavily quoting from the podcast.
I check Reddit the morning of our meeting, and see that her followers have sleuthed out her hotel. So it’s no surprise when a 19-year-old fan approaches to request a selfie. I ask her why she likes the podcast. “It just gets me excited for the big, wide world,” she says.
The demographics of Call Her Daddy’s listenership have shifted over time: Cooper says the audience split was about 60-40 women-men back in 2018. Now, she estimates, nearly 90% of its listeners are women. Cooper has filled the podcast with merchandisable slogans, and women post pictures of themselves in hats, sweatshirts and crop tops with “I Am Unwell” and “Block Him” and “Daddy” to Instagram with the #DaddyGang hashtag, vying for the attention of Cooper, who calls herself Father Cooper and, since the split with Franklyn, a Single Father.
Kiyah Bryant, 27, and Memory Gamino, 25, roommates who live in Chicago, started listening to Call Her Daddy after the dissolution of Cooper and Franklyn’s relationship made news. Gambino says Cooper’s “a great storyteller,” but both women agree it’s sometimes hard to tell when she is joking and when she’s offering real advice. “She says the show is about women’s empowerment and mental health. Not that it’s not doing that, but I see it as girl talk,” Bryant says. “I hope the younger listeners aren’t too self-serious about it.” Cooper’s influence, she says, is clear: “Whatever she says, a million people are going to hear it.”
To Spotify, Cooper’s audience was exactly her appeal. “They’re devoted in a way that’s hard to find,” says Dawn Ostroff, chief content officer at Spotify. “They feel personally connected to her and they feel personally connected to one another.”
They’re also an important demographic. Keith Jopling, consulting director at entertainment analytics group MIDiA Research and a former Spotify employee, says that advertisers are interested in targeting young women because they’re outperforming their male counterparts academically and closing the gap financially in the U.S. Plus, they are more social media savvy than other demographics. “They’re curious and highly engaged,” he says. “And for Alex Cooper’s podcast, the sexuality, the openness and especially the talk of mental health is all super on-trend right now.”
Podcasts are a growing market, and Spotify is betting that podcasters capturing the zeitgeist will help grow its subscriber base. Fifty-seven percent of Internet users in the U.S. now listen to podcasts, according to a June report from investment firm Evercore, and YouTube and Spotify surpassed Apple as the most popular podcast services for the first time this year. Now, 76% of Spotify’s subscribers listen to podcasts.
The flashy acquisitions also aim to satisfy Spotify’s investors. As Jopling points out, the margins in the music business, where labels take a sizable cut of the artists’ earnings, are small, so Spotify has a chance to earn more money from podcasts. A few hits like Serial have penetrated the mainstream, but it’s still a burgeoning business. “It’s the Netflix model,” he says, referring to the streaming network’s signing massive deals with A-list producers like Shonda Rhimes and Ryan Murphy. “They want original content, and they want splashy original content. Instead of trying to promote an indie band, they can go Hollywood with Meghan Markle and Michelle Obama and score with the tentpole hits.” And while Cooper may not have started as a celebrity, she’s certainly become one.
It’s been a year of change for Cooper. She ended her partnership with Franklyn, moved out of their shared New York apartment, became an L.A. resident, put a label on her first serious romantic relationship since Call Her Daddy began, left Barstool and joined Spotify. “I’m changing. I can still be funny. And I can still look this way. But I want people to understand there’s so much more behind the brand than crazy sex jokes,” she says.
While her comments on her podcasts may sound off the cuff, they’re carefully thought out and scripted. When Call Her Daddy launched, Cooper says, she outlined every episode, prewriting the intros and outros, rerecording single words she believed had been said in the wrong cadence or anything that might be taken out of context, editing the show and devising promotion strategies on social media. “This did not happen by mistake,” she says. “Or because I fell into it.”
Whatever comes next will continue an evolution that she has already begun. She acknowledges that the podcast, by virtue of centering on her own life, has offered a limited point of view, but she’s trying to make it a little less about her. She’s been inviting relationship therapists to give advice and celebrities like Miley Cyrus to talk about pansexuality and sexual fluidity. She evangelizes therapy. “I’m almost trying to rewrite the past a little bit. Not fully. I stand by a lot of the things I said, but the journey over the next few years is really cementing what I want the brand to be, which is female empowerment.”
As she’s in a moment of reflection, I ask her if there’s any advice she regrets giving. “Fashion-wise, I used to be like, ‘High-waisted bikinis—guys, I just don’t think they’re cute,’” she says. “I regret saying that because I understand that for some women that’s what makes them feel comfortable.” Coming from a podcast host who once advised women to compensate for being unattractive by having sex like a porn star, remorse over bikini critiques may seem trivial, but for her listeners (and, presumably, the swimsuit industry), it wasn’t. “I got so many women DMing me that were like, ‘Thank you so much. Now I’m going to buy it,’” she says. “It just gave me chills. I have to always remember that the words have an impact on these women.”
Both she and Spotify are vague about their plans, though Cooper suggests the potential to do something interactive was part of the draw to the company. She does mention, however, that she’s toying with the idea of a sex-crimes podcast that will—somehow—strike a lighter tone. “This is the athlete in me,” she says. “I’m looking at the charts and am well aware people are obsessed with true crime right now. So I want in. I want to be at the top of everything I do.”
In the meantime, she is slowly bringing Father Cooper a little closer to Alex Cooper. Her show still has a performance element to it, but she’s not, for instance, pitching her voice up like she did in those very early episodes. “It wasn’t a character,” she says. “It was more just like an elevated version of myself.” True to form, she used the show to fret about whether leaving single life behind would mean a dearth of hookup stories. “I’ve started to have an internal crisis of what’s best for me and what’s best for the show,” she said on the podcast episode in which she revealed she had a boyfriend. “Of course it ran through my head, ’Are people not going to love the narrative that I have a boyfriend? … Is it going to be boring?’” She hesitated to define her relationship in case it would be bad for her brand. Now Cooper’s committed to Mr. Sexy Zoom Man (yes, that’s how she refers to him on the podcast) and says she’s trying to live her life authentically—which she hopes will, in turn, make for better content. “Now I feel like I’m way more myself,” she tells me. “I can be like, ‘I didn’t have sex this week. Sorry.’”
The one-alarm fire in the vacant home, located in the tony Garden District, erupted late Wednesday and was quickly extinguished by some two dozen firefighters. No one was injured in the blaze.
According to the Advocate, police received reports of a suspicious person who was spotted in the neighborhood shortly before the fire erupted. Investigators found books inside the kitchen oven and a gasoline can in the house.
City records show the home was purchased in 2015 for $2.6 million by a shell company that has the same mailing address as Parkwood Entertainment, Beyonce’s management firm, the Advocate reported.
The 15,000-square-foot, 3-story Spanish baroque building was constructed in 1926 as a Presbyterian church, whose founding pastor was admitted Ku Klux Klan leader J.C. Barr, the Advocate reported. The building was later used as a ballet school.
Police and fire department officials as well as an agent from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives were on the scene probing the damage to the home on Thursday, reported WWL-TV Channel 4.
A spokesperson for Beyoncé told the Advocate he was unaware there had been a fire in the house.
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Simon Baker usually sports a boyish, shaggy mop of strawberry blonde hair.
But the 51-year-old has changed things up for a much harder look, revealing a towering coif and shaved-down sides while filming in Sydney this week.
The actor debuted the new cut as he got into a white four-wheel drive, wearing a pair of dark sunglasses.
New look: Actor Simon Baker, 51, (pictured) debuted a new haircut on the set of his new film project in Sydney this week
The Margin Call star first chatted to brunette crew member in a black puffer coat before leaving the area.
Simon, who looked quite different with his towering locks piled high, wore a black puffer jacket and a blue hooded jumper.
The production had a huge police presence around it due to the city’s Covid outbreak.
Looking good: Simon has changed things up, revealing a towering coif and shaved-down sides while filming in Sydney this week
Shaggy: He usually sports a shaggy mop of strawberry blonde hair. Pictured in March 2021
The High Ground star told Vancouver Sun in May 2018 that his style has ‘evolved out of necessity’.
‘I travel a lot and have to do varied activities, from catching up with old friends at a bar to dinner with diplomats. It’s good to have a sense of yourself and feel comfortable in the way you present no matter the circumstance,’ he explained.
The father-of-three added that he keeps his looks ‘simple and restrained’, and often sports head-to-toe dark blue or grey, comfortable coordinates and T-shirts.
Policed: The film production had a number of vans alongside a huge police presence, due to an outbreak of coronavirus in the city
The star scored a breakout role as attractive young writer Christian Thompson in 2006 comedy-drama The Devil Wears Prada.
The Breath actor then became the star of American drama TV series The Mentalist, playing former psychic Patrick Jane.
Simon branched out into directing with his first feature film Breath, premiering in Sydney in April 2018.
He is now in a relationship with new girlfriend Laura May Gibbs after announcing his split from wife Rebecca Rigg, 53, after 29 years of marriage, on January 29.
Split: He is now in a relationship with new girlfriend Laura May Gibbs after announcing his split from wife Rebecca Rigg, 53, (left) after 29 years of marriage, on January 29
Kanye West unveils highly-anticipated tenth studio album Donda during livestream
Kanye West received a standing ovation following the premiere of his long-awaited tenth studio album Donda at the Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta, Georgia on Thursday night.
The 44-year-old rapper’s album unveiling was broadcast via livestream on Apple Music and attended by the likes of his estranged wife Kim Kardashian and two of their four children.
After arriving fashionably late to the event, West emerged in an all-red getup from his highly-anticipated Yeezy x Gap collaboration and proceeded to pace around the arena beneath a spotlight as the album’s various tracks blared.
Donda, which is titled after the rapper’s late mother Donda West, gives devout Kanye listeners a glimpse into him and Kim’s crumbling marriage, and features collaborations with Jay-Z and Travis Scott.
Success: Kanye West received a standing ovation following the premiere of his long-awaited tenth studio album Donda at the Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta, Georgia on Thursday night
Support: The 44-year-old rapper’s album unveiling was broadcast via livestream on Apple Music and attended by the likes of his estranged wife Kim Kardashian and two of their four children; Kim pictured with daughter North (left)
The Mercedes-Benz Stadium boasts a 71,000 seat capacity, with West reportedly having ‘given away 5,000 tickets’ to students in the Atlanta area, while some fans ‘paid a couple hundred bucks for seats,’ as per Showbiz 411.
At one particularly moving moment, a song titled LOVE UNCONDITIONALLY, seemingly dedicated to his failed marriage to Kardashian, began to play, which prompted Kanye to crumple to the ground.
The moving track featured the rapper’s late mother Donda’s voice repeatedly saying, ‘No matter what you never abandon your family.’
A source told E! News on Thursday that Kanye gave Kim a ‘heads up’ about the deeply personal song, which evoked a powerful emotional response from the rapper.
‘He was respectful and gave her the heads up,’ the insider said, adding that Kanye ‘did not want to blindside’ the 40-year-old SKIMS founder.
Massive: The Mercedes-Benz Stadium boasts a 71,000 seat capacity, with West reportedly having ‘given away 5,000 tickets’ to students in the Atlanta area, while some fans ‘paid a couple hundred bucks for seats,’ as per Showbiz 411 .
Red: After arriving fashionably late to the event, West emerged in an all-red getup from his highly-anticipated Yeezy x Gap collaboration and proceeded to pace around the arena beneath a spotlight as the album’s various tracks blared
Overcome: At one particularly moving moment, a song titled LOVE UNCONDITIONALLY, seemingly dedicated to his failed marriage to Kim Kardashian, began to play, which prompted Kanye to fall to his knees
Kim filed for divorce from the Stronger hitmaker in February after seven years of marriage, citing ‘irreconcilable differences’ on court docs.
Kardashian was pictured at the album premiere in Atlanta, Georgia donning red from head-to-toe as an apparent homage to West’s look for the evening.
The SKIMS CEO wore her raven hair down and kept her eyes concealed behind a pair of large black shades as she took in the experience with her children.
Matching: Kardashian was pictured at the album premiere in Atlanta, Georgia donning red from head-to-toe as an apparent homage to West’s look for the evening
All in the family: Residing in the same area as Kim was her younger sister Khloe Kardashian, 37
Taking it all in: The SKIMS CEO wore her raven hair down and kept her eyes concealed behind a pair of large black shades as she took in the experience with her children
Residing in the same area as Kim was her younger sister Khloe Kardashian, 37, who donned similar shades but an all-black ensemble.
Kanye and Kim’s eldest daughter North, eight, and their eldest son Saint, five, appeared thrilled to be at the event, often captured with huge smiles on their faces.
The former couple also share three-year-old daughter Chicago and two-year-old son Psalm.
Kim, Khloe, and the kids were seated front-row in a boxed off area, seemingly separated from the rest fo the listening party attendees.
Proud of dad: Kim Kardashian seated in the arena with eldest daughter North, eight
VIP: Kim, Khloe, and the kids were seated front-row in a boxed off area, seemingly separated from the rest fo the listening party attendees
Back in black: Khloe donned similar shades to her older sister’s and donned an all-black ensemble
During Thursday’s album premiere, Kanye willingly let his often stoic persona melt as he immersed himself in his own music.
The hitmaker had on a shiny red puffer coat with matching pants and a pair of bright orange slipper shoes, stemming from his soon-to-be released Yeez x Gap collaboration.
Kanye also concealed his face with a semi-sheer nude mask.
Finding their seats: Kim and Khloe were seen navigating around the arena trying to locate their designated seats
Loving every moment: Kanye and Kim’s eldest daughter North, eight, and their eldest son Saint, five, appeared thrilled to be at the event, often captured with huge smiles on their faces
Amazement: North gazed on in awe at the large-scale production
The stadium, packed to the brim with West’s friends and supporters, was often times left pitch black – aside from the lights shining from cellphones.
The house lights in the stadium were turned on at certain points of the livestream, giving viewers at home a full view of West and his captivated audience.
Donda’s second track, seemingly titled Glory, features extensive audio of the rapper’s late-mother Donda, who tragically passed away on November 10, 2007 after having liposuction and breast-reduction surgery.
Into his mind: Donda, which is titled after the rapper’s late mother Donda West, gives devout Kanye listeners a glimpse into him and Kim’s crumbling marriage, and features collaborations with Jay-Z and Travis Scott
Letting go: During Thursday’s album premiere, Kanye willingly let his often stoic persona melt as he immersed himself in his own music
‘And you know I am my son’s mother,’ proudly declared Donda at one point in the moving audio.
Donda features rap cameos from Travis Scott, Pusha-T, Lil Baby, Baby Keem, Jeremih, Lil Durk, Roddy Riich, and Pop Smoke.
Kneeling down and placing his hands onto the stadium ground, Kanye listened intently to his recently released song No Child Left Behind, which debuted in a Beats By Dre ad earlier this week.
Take a look: The house lights in the stadium were turned on at certain points of the livestream, giving viewers at home a full view of West and his captivated audience
Tonal shift: The tone of the evening quickly switched from melancholy to triumphant as a track boasting the lyrics ‘guess who’s going to jail tonight, y’all gonna post my bail tonight’ blared over the stadium speakers
‘He’s done miracles on me,’ sings West on the track, which prompted him to gesture to the sky with one hand.
The tone of the evening quickly switched from melancholy to triumphant as a track boasting the lyrics ‘guess who’s going to jail tonight, y’all gonna post my bail tonight’ blared over the stadium speakers.
As an added surprise, the song featured a rap verse by West’s longtime pal and collaborator Jay-Z, with the rapper referencing to their beloved 2011 album Watch The Throne.
It is their first appearance on a track together since appearing on Drake’s feature-ridden single Pop Style in 2016.
Donda, which is titled after the name of West’s late mother, was originally slated to premiere on July 24, 2020, but was unexpectedly postponed amid West’s failed run for presidency.
Dedication: The album’s name and title track make reference to the rapper’s late mother Donda West, who passed away in 2007 at the age of 58 due to complications caused by a cosmetic procedure
At the time, he released the album’s title track Donda on what would have been his mother’s 71st birthday, alongside a nostalgic visual filled with home video footage of Kanye and Donda.
And now, almost exactly a year later, Donda will be available to purchase and stream starting Friday, July 23.
West confirmed the album’s long-awaited release in the latest ad for Beats By Dre starring track star Sha’Carri Richardson, which premiered during Game 6 of the NBA Finals on Tuesday.
The minute-long spot, which was scored and edited by West, features a snippet of his newest track No Child Left Behind.
Donda is the follow-up album to 2019’s Jesus Is King, which saw Kanye enter into the realm of gospel music – inspiring the birth of his weekly Sunday Service sessions.
Delayed: Donda, which is titled after the name of West’s late mother, was originally slated to premiere on July 24, 2020, but was unexpectedly postponed amid West’s failed run for presidency
Stephen Colbert Reveals The Dumbest New Trend Among Anti-Vaxxers
Stephen Colbert said anti-vaxxers have been cooking up weird ways to get around Facebook’s crackdown on misinformation about the coronavirus vaccine, such as changing their groups to names like “dance party” to evade detection.
“So get ready for new dance crazes like Actual Saturday Night Fever, the Harlem Ache and The Floss (Of Taste and Smell),” he joked.
They also use code words, so instead of saying someone “got the vaccine,” they’ll say that person “danced” or “drank beer.” Pfizer is called “pizza” and Moderna is called “Moana,” as in the Disney film.
“If you’re going to describe something you think is killing everybody, maybe don’t use code words that are things that everybody universally loves,” he said.
In one group, a member said her husband got sick after he went on “a cross-country trip where he spent 2 nights with dancers.”
“In this case, ‘dancers’ is code for ‘vaccinated people,‘” Colbert pointed out. “But now her husband has a perfect alibi for going to strip clubs. Honey, I spent the night with two ‘dancers,’ and now I have ‘chlamydia.’”
See more in his Thursday night monologue:
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13 Reasons Why star Tommy Dorfman comes out as transgender
13 Reasons Why star Tommy Dorfman has come out as transgender woman.
The 29-year-old actress made the revelation in an interview with TIME on Thursday, saying: ‘For a year now, I have been privately identifying and living as a woman – a trans woman.’
On the hit Netflix show, Dorfman played recurring male character Ryan Shaver, who publishes Hannah Baker’s problems in the school newspaper without her consent.
Speaking with trans novelist Torrey Peters, Dorfman explained: ‘It’s funny to think about coming out, because I haven’t gone anywhere. I view today as a reintroduction to me as a woman, having made a transition medically.’
Reveal: 13 Reasons Why star Tommy Dorfman comes out as transgender and reveals she has been ‘living as a trans woman’ for the past year in a new interview with TIME
‘Coming out is always viewed as this grand reveal, but I was never not out,’ she went on. ‘Today is about clarity: I am a trans woman. My pronouns are she/her. My name is Tommy.’
The rising star sparked speculation from fans about her gender identity this past year after changing her appearance on Instagram, as well as stepping out with actor Lucas Hedges in New York recently wearing a summer dress.
Dorfman also revealed in the interview why she decided to keep her name amid her transition, explaining: ‘I’m named after my mom’s brother who passed a month after I was born, and I feel very connected to that name, to an uncle who held me as he was dying.’
Rising star: On the hit Netflix show, Dorfman played recurring male character Ryan Shaver, who publishes Hannah Baker’s problems in the school newspaper without her consent
She added: ‘This is an evolution of Tommy. I’m becoming more Tommy… I am actually myself.’
Talking about her decision to come out, Dorfman said: ‘I’ve been living in this other version of coming out where I don’t feel safe enough to talk about it, so I just do it. But I recognize that transitioning is beautiful. Why not let the world see what that looks like?’
She added: ‘So I kept, on Instagram, a diaristic time capsule instead – one that shows a body living in a more fluid space.’
Glamorous: Tommy took part in a stylish shoot for TIME wearing a sophisticated black gown
‘However, I’ve learned as a public-facing person that my refusal to clarify can strip me of the freedom to control my own narrative,’ Tommy went on.
‘With this medical transition, there has been discourse about my body, and it began to feel overwhelming.’
The actress explained that she did consider a different route in publicly coming out, including disappearing for two years and coming back into the spotlight ‘with a new name, new face and new body.’
However, Dorfman said that it was something she ‘couldn’t afford to do’ and wasn’t what she wanted.
Changing style: Tommy sparked speculation from fans about her gender identity this past year after changing her appearance (Pictured with actor Lucas Hedges last month in NYC)
Impressive performance: Tommy rose to fame on the 2017 Netflix show that was a surprise hit
Instead, the performer says her intention is to shine a light on ‘gender fluidity’ and ‘how fast and dynamic and vulnerable it can be, how it’s an ongoing thing.’
Dorfman spoke candidly with novelist Peters – author of Detransition, Baby – about how she was in a relationship with a gay man for nine years prior to her transitioning.
‘It’s wild to be 29 and going through puberty again. Some days I feel like I’m 14,’ she said. ‘As a result of that shift, the types of romantic partnerships I seek out are different.’
‘I was in a nine-year relationship in which I was thought of as a more male-bodied person, with a gay man. I love him so much, but we’ve been learning that as a trans woman, what I’m interested in is not necessarily reflected in a gay man,’ the actress divulged.
She added: ‘So we’ve had incredible conversations to redefine our relationship as friends.’
‘For a year now, I have been privately identifying and living as a woman – a trans woman,’ she told TIME Magazine on Thursday
Journey: The actress said she considered disappearing for two years and coming back into the spotlight ‘with a new name, new face and new body’ but decided against it
Pose: The actress was seen at screening for new movie Zola last month looking stylish in a white dress
The actress also spoke openly about the struggles she faced in medically transitioning, saying that although the process can be ‘liberating and clarifying’ there is a ‘sad part’ in that ‘you don’t get to acknowledge some of what you’re leaving.’
‘There’s a way in which in order to justify transition, you have to say everything was terrible before,’ she opined. ‘One doesn’t have to medically transition to be trans, but for me, it was an active choice. I’m aligning my body with my soul.’
‘Yet as a result of that, I am losing some things. I have to reckon with the fact that I brought along a lot of people and things who might not end up being there for this part of my journey.’
Recovery: Last month, Dorfman posted this flashback photo celebrating 8 years of sobriety telling fans ‘there’s nothing to be ashamed of or embarrassed by. i love you.’
Teenage years: The actress shared these images last month saying she was a ‘teenage alcoholic and drug addict just trying to get by’
Sending a message: Tommy – who is now sober – told fans ‘if you’re struggling with addiction, when you’re ready, ask for help’
Dorfman talked about how she has anticipated her transition will affect her acting career, reasoning that it’s ‘impossible’ for her to separate her ‘personal and professional’ transition, ‘because my body and face are linked to my career.’
‘I’m most recognized for playing a bitchy gay poet on a soap opera, and I feared that by actively transitioning in my personal life, I would lose whatever career I’ve been told I’m supposed to have,’ she said about her breakout role on the hit series.
‘But I’m no longer interested in playing ‘male’ characters – except for maybe in a ‘Cate Blanchett playing Bob Dylan’ way. Sometimes you just have to say, “No, this is just who I f*****g am.”‘
Moving forward, Dorfman will next appear in Lena Dunham’s movie Sharp Stick, her first role ‘as a girl’ which wrapped earlier this year and was an ‘exciting and validating’ experience for the actress.
LBD: Dorfman has been showing off her style on Instagram, including this image from a week ago that garnered praise from fans as well as actress Dove Cameron
Sharing: Earlier this month, Dorfman told fans that she was getting ‘laser hair removal’ on her chest praising her doctors
Glam appearance: Tommy shared this image from a shoot earlier this month to her 1.3million followers on Instagram
Taking to her Instagram account on Thursday to promote the interview, Dorfman thanks fans writing: ‘I’m especially grateful to every single trans person who walked this path, broke down barriers, and risked their lives to live authentically and radically as themselves before me.’
She added: ‘Thank you to all the trans woman that showed me who i am, how to live, celebrate myself, and take up space in this world.’
Dorfman was flooded with positive messages following her post, with fashion designer Marc Jacobs writing: ‘She is everything. A beautiful human.’
Riverdale actress Lili Reinhart commented: ‘You are so beautiful.’ The post was also liked by Adam Lambert, Maddie Ziegler and SNL actress Chloe Fineman.
Four Weddings and a Funeral star Andie MacDowell commented ‘Beautiful women,’ while Modern Family actor Jesse Tyler Ferguson wrote: ‘Yes! Stunning as always!’
Katherine Langford, who starred alongside Dorfman in 13 Reasons Why, said: ‘She’s STUNNING,’ alongside three heart emojis.
Last month, Dorfman revealed that she is now eight years sober saying she used to be a ‘teenage alcoholic and drug addict just trying to get by.’
Sharing a series of photos from her youth she added: ‘If you’re struggling with addiction, when you’re ready, ask for help.’
Coming soon: Dorfman will next appear in Lena Dunham’s movie Sharp Stick, her first role ‘as a girl’ which she described as a ‘exciting and validating’ experience