The 30-year-old Puerto Rican politician, currently serving her first term as the U.S. Representative or New York’s 14th congressional district, handidly won her district’s Democratic primary, a victory that effectively ensures a second term in the heavily Democratic distrct.
Ocasio-Cortez warded off three Democratic primary challengers, including Michelle Caruso-Cabrera, a former CNBC anchor and self-described fiscal conservative who criticized the first-term progressive’s expensive agenda.
AOC was leading with 74-percent of the vote, compared to Caruso-Cabrera’s 19-percent, with less 2 percent of precincts reporting, accoridng to The Associated Press.
Ocasio-Cortez noted on social media Tuesday evening that her surprise upset in 2018 was not a “fluke.”
The Democratic socialist shocked political pundits after defeating 10-term incumbent Rep. Joe Crowley during the 2018 midterms.
“Our win was treated as an aberration, or (because) my opponent ‘didn’t try,’” Ocasio-Cortez wrote in a tweet. “So from the start, tonight’s race was important to me. Tonight we are proving that the people’s movement in NY isn’t an accident. It‘s a mandate.”
Ocasio-Cortez has raised more than $10 million since 2019, and she spent more than $2.4 million on Facebook ads alone since January—far more than any other member of Congress has, The New York Timesreported last week—as the COVID-19 pandemic effectively halted traditional campaigning in her district.
The 41-year-old half Mexican American actress/singer, best known for her leading roles on Broadway, will perform on PBS’ virtual Independence Day concert, A Capitol Fourth.
Due to the continued coronavirus pandemic, PBS opted for a virtual Fourth of July event, instead of cancelling it completely.
A Capitol Fourth, now in its 40th year, will feature pre-taped performances from around the country, hosted by John Stamos and Vanessa Williams.
In addition to Gonzalez, who played Elphaba in the Broadway production ofWickedand originated the role of Nina Rosario in the Off-Broadway and Broadway productions of the musical In the Heights, performers include Patti LaBelle, John Fogerty, Renee Fleming,The Temptations, Trace Adkins, Andy Grammer, Yolanda Adams, Brantley Gilbert, Lauren Alaina, Brian Stokes-Mitchell, Kelli O’Hara, and members of the National Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Jack Everly.
Segments for the eventare being pre-taped, and the special also will feature highlights from previous years.
The 90-minute show also will feature a tribute by Stamos to workers on the front lines of the coronavirus crisis, with Chrissy Metz singing I’m Standing with You.
There will also be segments honoring African American heroes from the past and present, and a salute to wounded warriors. A live segment of the special will feature the annual fireworks display over the D.C. skyline.
“For four decades A Capitol Fourth has paid tribute to our nation’s birthday and the hopes and dreams of all Americans,” said executive producer Michael Colbert. “This year, our broadcast will reflect the reality of what we as a country have faced and the challenges ahead, while showcasing our message of inclusion, patriotism and love.”
The special will air on PBS on July 4 at 8:00 pm ET, and will be heard on the American Forces Network and in stereo over NPR member stations. The concert also will be streamed on Facebook, YouTube and PBS.org and will be available on demand from July 4-18.
While Pride Month parades have been put on hold throughout the world, the 48-year-old Puerto Rican superstar is helping the LGTBQ+ community celebrate in a special way.
P&G and iHeartMediahave joined forces for “Can’t Cancel Pride: A COVID-19 Relief Benefit for the LGBTQ+ Community.”
The special will raise funds for LGTBQ+ communities most impacted by COVID-19.
It will stream on Thursday, June 25 at 9:00 pm PT on iHeartRadio’s Facebook and Instagram, PrideRadio.com and broadcast on iHeartMedia stations nationwide.
In addition to Martin, the event will feature appearances by Billy Porter, Big Freedia,Adam Lambert, Melissa Etheridge, Katy Perry, Kim Petras, Sia among others. The celebration will culminate with a one-hour special hosted by leading iHeartMedia on-air personality Elvis Duran and actress and LGBTQ+ advocate Laverne Cox.
“There’s no question COVID-19 has impacted the LGBTQ+ community in a variety of ways, and at this time in the U.S., the struggle for equality and inclusion has never been more important,” said Gayle Troberman, Chief Marketing Officer for iHeartMedia. “Now is a time we need to come together to support the organizations that help bring critical resources to LGBTQ people in need and Can’t Cancel Pride aims to do just that. Like always, Pride will continue to represent the resilience, beauty and strength of the LGBTQ+ community around the nation and the globe.”
Martin publicly came out as gay in March 2010, stating: “I am proud to say that I am a fortunate homosexual man. I am very blessed to be who I am.” He added that “these years in silence and reflection made me stronger and reminded me that acceptance has to come from within, and that this kind of truth gives me the power to conquer emotions I didn’t even know existed.” He has since been a dynamic activist for the LGBTQ+ community.
The 41-year-old Puerto Rican and Cuban American actress and activist will co-host Rock the Vote’s Democracy Summer campaign kick-off on Thursday, June 18, a two-hour virtual concert co-headlined by Katy Perry and Black Eyed Peas.
Co-hosted by Dawson and Logan Browning with Chuck D and Eve, the event will stream live beginning at 8:00 pm ET/5:00 pm PT on democracysummer.org, and Democracy Summer’s Facebook and YouTube pages.
Ne-Yo, Big Freedia, Lucy Hale, Amara La Negra, Saweetie, Sklyar Astin, Max, Leslie Grace, Dove Cameron, Sofia Carson, Rich Brian and Michael K. Williams are among those slated to appear remotely.
Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ) and former Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Julian Castro will make appearances.
“I’m excited to be a part of this kickoff to Democracy Summer 2020 with so many amazing talents, activists and speakers,” says Perry. “The young people of America are speaking loud and clear on the streets and online, and come November, it will be more important than ever to fight for justice and equality, and against systemic racism, with our ballots.”
“The young people are engaged. Their voices are loud and getting louder. The world is watching. And we need to vote,” agrees Chuck D, an early and consistent supporter of Rock the Vote, which was founded in 1990 by Virgin Records America co-chairman Jeff Ayeroff primarily to increase voter turnout among young adults.
“We are seeing the urgency for change in America happening in real time. This is the moment for us to use the most important tool on the planet to fight for that change…our right to vote,” says Ne-Yo. “Our democracy needs our voices. Voting is the moment to be the voice for injustice and for equality. But most importantly, to be the voice for humanity. We cannot let each other down in the local elections or on Nov. 3.”
Produced by BWG Live and in partnership with Voto Latino Foundation, When We All Vote and March For Our Lives, the concert marks not only the first live-streamed event for the Rock the Vote, but also its first large-scale summer activation.
In previous years the organization amped up in the fall before a Presidential election and typically staged a live event. Both pivots are a direct result of Covid-19.
“One of the realities is coronavirus derailed the momentum that is required in a major election cycle,” Rock the Vote president Carolyn DeWitt tells Billboard. “A few months ago we began seeing how the restrictions were affecting young people in particular, by moving them off college campuses and disrupting graduations and proms,” she says. “Our effort is really about building that momentum back up.”
With some 4 million young people turning 18 this year and innumerable issues at stake, the goal of Democracy Summer is to bring 200,000 new voters to the polls in November when Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden challenges Donald Trump, as well as myriad primary and local elections throughout the summer and fall. Those interested in the event are encouraged to register at the Democracy Summer web site to get the latest details and lineup updates, although preregistration isn’t required to tune in. Viewers can go to Rock the Vote’s website to register to vote.
The murder of George Floyd by a Minneapolis police officer and the swell of support around the Black Lives Matter movement also has catalyzed Thursday’s event. As protesters around the country have taken to the streets, Rock the Vote registered 107,000 new voters through its platforms and gained more than 25,000 new Instagram followers during the week of June 1, DeWitt says—numbers that dwarf those of a typical week.
“With what we’ve seen over the last couple weeks, the effort around Democracy Summer has become even more important. It’s not just the virus, it’s bigger than the economy standing still. The world feels like it’s on the brink of chaos and yet this moment around Black Lives Matter is bigger than that,” DeWitt says. “Frankly speaking, a big part of that is people are exercising their rights in a democracy. Young people are looking for things they can do and actions they can take in order to create change. We want to make sure we’re continuing to sustain that fire and passion into November, and make sure young people know the power of their votes and create the change they want to see.”
The live stream will include opportunities for viewers to donate to black-led and -focused organizations including the Community Justice Action Fund and National Action Network.
“Now, more than ever, voting is key for long-term change,” Black Eyed Peas said in a statement. “The youth vote is going to decide the future of America. It’s not just our duty but our honor to spread the word in an election year.”
“The diversity of America is what makes it great, and it is also what makes it our country,” says La Negra. “I am Dominican proudly, yet I am a black woman always. I matter. You matter. And together, we will always matter!”
“The need for young people to get out and vote has never been more important,” says Participant CEO David Linde. “We are proud to be working with Rock the Vote in making that need a reality and by using the inspiring, powerful message of Rep. John Lewis to make good trouble.”
Rock the Vote is planning additional Democracy Summer activations throughout the summer including on the Fourth of July and on August 6, the anniversary of the 1965 Voting Rights Act.
Dream With Us aims to combine live musical performances, real-time challenges, one-on-one interviews and empowering stories for a full day of festivities presented by OHM Live and Constellation, an inspirational human impact organization co-founded by Dubai-based entrepreneurs Jean-Karl Saliba and Zaid Frederiks.
“Dreams can’t be quarantined. Dreams know no boundaries, no race, no color and no religion. Dreams have the power to change the world. Our vision is to amplify human connection within an ecosystem that enables dreamers to build a community and connect globally,” Saliba and Frederiks said in a statement. “We engage with humanity by using the power of our shared and collective dreams with the goal to positively reshape the narrative of our planet.”
The 72-year-old Mexican Grammy-winning guitarist and entrepreneur will be taking part in a global livestream event to benefit the Amazon Emergency Fund, an indigenous-led effort providing rapid response grants in the region to address the COVID-19 pandemic.
Santana, considered one of the greatest guitarists of all time, will be joined by Jane Fonda, Morgan Freeman, Peter Gabriel and numerous other artists for the Thursday, May 28 event.
They’ll join indigenous leaders, scientists and a coalition of NGOs in presentng Artists United for Amazonia: Protecting the Protectors, a livestream event produced by Artists for Amazonia.
The two-hour event will run from 8:00 pm to 10 pm ETE and will be hosted by part-Spanish actress and Game of Thrones co-star Oona Chaplin, who played Talisa Maegyr on the series. The livestream will be available via Facebook and through the event website.
The program will promote the Amazon Emergency Fund, launched last month by a coalition of indigenous organizations, NGOs, and allies to respond to the urgent needs of indigenous peoples of the Amazon threatened by COVID-19.
Funds raised will be used for: immediate prevention and care; food and medical supplies; emergency communications and evacuation; protection and security for indigenous territories; and food sovereignty and community resilience. The Amazon Emergency Fund aims to raise $5 million over the next 60 days for Forest Guardians to protect themselves against the pandemic in all nine Amazonian countries.
The Artists United for Amazonialivestream will feature living-room musical performances, interviews, and calls to action.
Performers include Herbie Hancock, Rocky Dawuni, Butterscotch Clinton, Xiuhtezcatl Martinez, Cary Elwes, Alfre Woodard, Wade Davis,Wagner Moura, and Brazilian Grammy winners Ivan Lins and Luciana Souza.
Others participating include Jane Goodall, Tom Bergeron, Ed Begley Jr., Frances Fisher, Matti Caspi, Suyan Caspi, Wendie Malick, Scottie Thompson, Kali Uchis, Rocky Dawuni, Celine Cousteau, Matthew Modine, Q’orianka Kilcher, Chloe Smith from Rising Appalachia, Sonia Guajajara, Angela Kaxuyana, Nina Gualinga, Benki Piyako, Mapu Huni Kuin, Lizardo Cauper, Thomas Lovejoy, Carlos Nobre, Atossa Soltani, Leila Salazar-López, Christina Miller, and Wade Davis.
“This event is part of an extraordinary alliance of organizations and individuals dedicated to preserving the most biodiverse region on Earth,” said Sarah duPont, founder of Amazon Aid Foundation and co-director, River of Gold. “Illicit and unregulated gold mining is one of the most dangerous forms of deforestation in the Amazon Basin and releases toxic mercury into the ecosystem. Since the pandemic, gold mining has exploded across the Amazon and into indigenous territories bringing with it violence and COVID-19. Now, the Amazon is at the tipping point and the protectors of the Amazon are under dire threat. What happens in the Amazon affects us all.”
Leila Salazar-López, Executive Director of Amazon Watch, added: “The Amazon and its peoples are in a state of emergency due to climate change and the COVID-19 pandemic. It’s a crime against nature and a crime against humanity. It is a time for all to unite and act in defense of the forest and in solidarity with the indigenous and traditional peoples across the Amazon who are protecting this great rainforest and our climate for all of humanity and life on Earth.”
Jimmy Smits is honoring the military personnel who died while serving in the United States Armed Forces in a special way…
The 64-year-old half-Puerto Rican actor will be taking part in the National Memorial Day Concert.
Due to the coronavirus outbreak, this year’s show will be a virtual concert. But creators hope it takes on a special resonance.
“These important rituals and holidays have a whole meaning for all of this time too,” said executive producer Michael Colbert. “We are certainly completely focused on what Memorial Day is, but I feel like at this time it is touching so many of us today.”
The National Memorial Day Concert willair on PBS on Sunday at 8:00 pm ET. The 90-minute show honors members of the military and veterans with performances and personal stories, it’s is a 31-year tradition.
Joe Mantegna and Gary Sinise are returning to host the event, with a line up that includes former Secretary of State Colin Powell, Cynthia Erivo, Renée Fleming, Trace Adkins, CeCe Winans, Kelli O’Hara, Mary McCormack, Christopher Jackson and the National Symphony Orchestra conducted by Jack Everly, as well as General Mark A. Milley, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. The broadcast will also feature performances from previous concerts, including those by Sam Elliott, Laurence Fishburne and Esai Morales.
Colbert believes that the concert, which has honored sacrifices made in wars of the past, sends an important message for what the country is going through today. The event also will spotlight those who have been on the front lines of the coronavirus crisis, including first responders, doctors, nurses, grocery clerks, truck drivers and postal workers.
“We just felt that, to have that focus on what we have already gone through, will bring a real connection to people to what is going on today, to show that we are going to get through this,” he said.
Also woven throughout the show will be messages from entertainers and other artists directed at members of the military, veterans and front-line workers. The list includes Chris Evans, George Clooney, Gwyneth Paltrow, Julianne Moore, Jimmy Kimmel, Mark Wahlberg and Smits.
The National Memorial Day Concert also will air on the American Forces Network, and will be streamed on YouTube and Facebook, as well as PBS.org. It also will be available on demand.
Here’s the list of performers with taped messages: Anthony Ramos, Blair Underwood, Brian Tee, Chely Wright, Chris Evans, Courteney Cox, Denis Leary, Dule Hill, George Clooney, Graham Greene, Gwyneth Paltrow, Jaina Lee Ortiz, Jennifer Garner, Jimmy Kimmel, Jimmy Smits, Jon Hamm, Julianne Moore, Lindsey Vonn, Lisa Kudrow, Marcia Gay Harden, Mark Wahlberg, Milo Ventimiglio, Noah Wylie, Rita Moreno, S. Epatha Merkerson, Steven Weber, Sugar Ray Leonard, Vanessa Williams.
Also participating in new and some past selected performances are members from the U.S. Army Herald Trumpets, The U.S. Army Chorus, the U.S. Army Voices and Downrange, the Soldiers’ Chorus of the U.S. Army Field Band, the U.S. Navy Band Sea Chanters, the U.S. Air Force Singing Sergeants and Service Color Teams provided by the Military District of Washington, D.C.
The Billboard Liveseries launched on March 19 with the help of JoJo, Josh Grobanand Russell Dickerson, who selected non-profits to support during their livestream to benefit those most affected by COVID-19.
Billboard Live At-Home series thus far has helped charities like Meals on Wheels America, Downtown Women’s Center, My Friend’s Place and more.
Here’s this week’s full schedule:
Monday (May 11) 1 p.m. ET — Loud Luxury
Tuesday (May 12) 1 p.m. ET — Natanael Cano & Junior H
The LeBron James Family Foundation announced that it’s paying tribute to the class of 2020 with a one-hour multimedia event called Graduate Together: America Honors the High School Class of 2020, with the 26-year-old Puerto Rican reggaeton and Latin trap singer joining the roster of participating artists.
James’ virtual graduation party for this year’s graduation class, who’s seen their school year cancelled because of the coronavirus, will take place on Saturday, May 16 at 8:00 pm ET simultaneously on NBC, ABC, CBS, and Fox— as well as on the streaming platforms Complex Networks, Facebook app, Instagram, People TV, Snapchat, TikTok and YouTube.
In addition to Bad Bunny, the lineup includes Kane Brown, Lana Condor, David Dobrik, Dolan Twins, Karol G, Liza Koshy, Maren Morris, National Teacher of the Year Rodney Robinson, Olivia Wilde, Zendaya, Charli D’Amelio, Dixie D’Amelio, Chika, YBN Cordae, Loren Gray, H.E.R., the Jonas Brothers, Brandan Bmike Odums, Ben Platt, Henry Platt, Jonah Platt, Megan Rapinoe, Yara Shahidi, Lena Waithe, Pharrell Williams, Malala Yousafzaiand many more.
Working with the XQ Instituteand The Entertainment Industry Foundation, the show will allow the companies to honor the more than three million high school seniors who’ll miss out on the annual rite of passage due to the national shutdown caused by the COVID-19pandemic.
“We learned early on in our work with students and families in Akron that education is so much more than academics,” said James in a statement.
“It’s about a shared experience, a journey we’re all on together—students, parents, educators, community members, and everyone around them. With that not being possible right now, we’ve been working to find ways to help families get through this really difficult time. These students have worked incredibly hard for this and there’s no way we can let that go unrecognized. While this won’t be the graduation experience they were supposed to get, we hope we can still give them something special because they deserve it.”
The commercial-free show will be curated by high school students and educators from across the country, with support from the American Federation of Teachers, highlighted by a collection of commencement addresses, celebrity performances and inspirational vignettes.