In this episode of People’s Party, Talib Kweli and Jasmin Leigh sit down with stand-up comedian, actor, writer, and Saturday Night Live star Michael Che. The result is a hilarious, yet insightful conversation. Topics include Michael growing up in Manhattan’s Lower East Side, the gentrification of Brooklyn, his father naming him after revolutionary Che Guevara, how Michael approaches politics in his comedy from a know-nothing perspective, and sticking to facts in comedy while maintaining artistic freedom. Che also goes into his time spent at LaGuardia High School, comedy not being on his radar until later, and he details his biggest takeaways and life-lessons learned there.
Later the trio discusses Michael’s love of hip-hop, and how it translates to his comedy. He details experiences working with Kanye West on SNL, Talib tells us an early Kanye story while opening for Common on Tour, Michael details the comics that had the most impact on his development as a comedian, he speaks on the importance of brutal honesty in comedy, the trio discusses the ‘Michael Che Matters’ clips about Black Lives Matter that have gone viral, and Che speaks on how he has navigated the challenges of bringing his comedy to the masses during covid-life. They also go on to discuss balancing personal politics while staying mainstream on SNL, the Shane Gillis firing, Michael’s friendship with ‘Weekend Update’ co-host Colin Jost, their battle royal at WrestleMania, and in closing Michael drops his top 5 favorite SNL sketches of all-time.