The Funniest Man Alive. The Muslim. The Dave Chappelle
Today I decided to cover someone from the present, who has brought laughter and healing. He’s not a scientist or philosopher, in fact, he was the first in his family to not pursue a higher education. Instead, he followed a path that most don’t follow, the roughest most unknown path. He is a comedian, producer, writer and incredible human, the Dave Chappelle.
Some of you may not know who Dave Chappelle is, and to those people I ask, how are you surviving this world without knowing Dave Chappelle?
He has been called the ‘funniest man alive’. He covers controversial subjects that other comedians have not been able to maneuver, and makes subjects like race, feminism, police brutality, American politics, gang life, black rights and a wide rang of other subjects that are difficult and sometimes painful, funny. His own special flare can even make a tough subject like Jussie Smollet and OJ Simpson into funny characters without lessening the severity of the topics.
He’s brutally honest about our failures as humans with our own hypocrisies, he’s fair, sincere and insincere, he’s all around humanistic and revealing.
You may recall his Emmy winning show “The Chappelle Show”, which he walked away from 12 years ago after a slew of different internal and external struggles. He flew to Africa to recollect himself and what he calls ‘checking his intentions’. There he gained perspective of who he was, what he wanted and if $50 million dollars was worth his soul. He revealed his thoughts of what he felt like in one of his specials for Netflix, where he aligned himself feeling as the ‘bottom bitch’ being tricked into doing another 50 miles. It was a raw and intense moment for Dave Chappelle, but he was grounded and real with his emotions.
He was very controversial during this period of walking away from $50 million, but he revealed that he was in fact a Muslim. He converted in 1998. He said he didn’t mention too much about his religion and himself because he didn’t want his flaws to reflect ‘this beautiful thing’.
Since walking away from Comedy Central, Dave Chappelle signed a deal with Netflix for $60 million, for 3 specials- all of which were in their own right incredibly honest, funny and brought us back to being ‘a thinking audience’ on tough subjects. He did really well to highlight black rights and the state of the United States.
13 years ago Dave Chappelle put on the best concert, The Block Party. Many don’t realize why he did it. After the latest mass shooting in Dayton, Dave Chappelle wanted to do something to bring people together, to make people forget for just a moment that the US was suffering. He did it as a benefit concert and for people to heal. It is a great part of Islam to ‘heal’ and bring ‘healing to others’, Dave Chappelle in a nutshell did just that. Through music, he brought people together to enjoy music and to continue living. His peers and friends such as The Roots, Mos Def, Talib Kweli, The Refugees, Kanye West and more, threw on the best concert with the best performers of hiphop to this date.
Since then, Dave Chappelle has won the Mark Twain Awards for American Humour, 3 consecutive awards for his specials, Emmy and Grammy awards and critical acclaim. His works go from movies like Blue Streak to Undercover Brother to Half Baked (which has become a cult classic so hold on to that VHS) to 2018’s A Star is Born .
He is also gone on to become known as the best comedian around. His tickets sell within minutes and he brings a piece of reality to every show.
He is the real deal. Dave Chappelle, the man, the comedian, the Muslim, is as real as they come.
He’s given the world laughter, things to think about through his shows, and reminds us that we are all humans in the end just trying to maneuver through life the best we can.
You can watch Dave Chappelle’s specials on Netflix: Equanimity, Sticks & Stones, The Bird Revelation. The are controversially hilarious.