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Ashanti To Sing National Anthem At Pacquiao VS. Bradley Fight

Grammy Award-winning songstress and songwriter Ashanti will be singing the National Anthem at the rematch between Fighter of the Decade Manny Pacquiao and the undefeated two-time division world champion Timothy Bradley Jr. Pacquiao admitted to always being a fan of Ashanti and happened to sit next to the "Braveheart" singer court side at a Knick's game. Pacquiao asked Ashanti if she would like to sing the National Anthem at his fight and she agreed leaving the boxer ecstatic.

"The Knicks may have lost that night, but I felt like the biggest winner in the world when I walked out of Madison Square Garden," says Pacquiao.

Ashanti being a fan of boxing found time in her busy schedule with the recent release of her new album, Braveheart. "I told Manny I was a big fan and was so excited when he asked me to sing the National Anthem at his upcoming fight and I can't wait," says Ashanti. I actually love boxing! Manny's such a champion and I can't wait to cheer him on!"

Both Pacquiao (55-5-2, 38 KOs) and Bradley (31-0, 12 KOs) will be fighting for the World Boxing Organization (WBO) welterweight title. The two first fought against one another in 2012 with Bradley coming out with a win, ending Pacquiao's welterweight title reign as well as his seven-year, 15-bout winning streak, making this fight Pacquiao's first fight in the U.S. since 2012.

Pacquiao vs. Bradley happens Sat., April 12 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nev. The championship event will be distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View, beginning at 9PM ET / 6PM PT.

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Megan Thee Stallion Earns First No. 1 With “Savage” Remix Ft. Beyonce

Megan Thee Stallion is the second female rapper to come in at No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 in the last month. The Houston rapper’s “Savage” remix  jumped from fifth place to the top spot this week marking Meg’s first run atop the single’s chart and Beyonce’s seventh No. 1 single overall.

To celebrate, Bey sent Megan a bouquet of flowers.

Beyoncé sent Megan flowers to congratulate her on their #1 with Savage Remix 🥺💕 pic.twitter.com/Q1bWwFm9LC

— Megan Daily (@HottieSource) May 26, 2020

The “Savage” remix gave Meg her first No. 1 on the Hot R&B/Hip Hop songs chart, and returned to the top spot on the Hot Rap Songs tally. The track also climbed four slots to top the Digital Song Sales chart. The single marks a special achievement for Beyonce who joins Mariah Carey as the only two artists to earn No. 1’s in the 2000s, the 2010, and 2020s.

In addition to making chart history, the “Savage” remix was a collective effort between Megan and Beyonce to help their hometown of Houston during the COVID-19 pandemic. The song has reportedly raised more than $500,000 for charity.

 

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Issa Rae And Kumail Nanjiani Talk Their Black And Brown Dynamic In 'The Lovebirds'

As our latest op-ed points out, black romance films are having a moment, and The Lovebirds is adding a comedic twist to the matter. Ahead of the MRC/Paramount Pictures' premiere on streaming platform Netflix, VIBE correspondent Jazzie Belle sat down with the film's lead actors Issa Rae and Kumail Nanjiani to discuss the refreshing black and brown dynamic between their characters.

"I think it was just more exciting to me [to take part in a different romantic dynamic]. It was just that, and I didn't realize until later," said Rae. "Obviously with working with Kumail, it just like 'Oh, I haven't seen an on-screen pairing like this' and [I] was excited to play with him cosmetically. But yes, it's exciting to see a new and fresh dynamic in movies like this."

"When you see a portrayal of Pakistanis in American pop culture, generally, you're seeing certain lanes. You don't see us being light or funny or fun that often," said Nanjiani. "My family is very, very funny. My friends are very funny, so it wasn't even an attempt to try and show that [brown characters can be portrayed differently]. I just wanted to show how the people I know are. My mom and my dad are some of the funniest people I've ever met."

Watch the full interview above. The Lovebirds is streaming on Netflix now.

Interview's music bed provided by Gus.

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Man Who Recorded Murder Of Ahmaud Arbery Arrested

A third man has been arrested in the murder of Ahmaud Arbery. William “Roddie” Bryan Jr., who recorded Arbery’s murder, was taken into custody on Thursday (May 21), the Georgia Bureau of Investigation announced.

“The family is extremely relieved,” attorney S. Lee Merritt, who represents Arbery’s mother, said in response to Bryan’s arrest. “We didn’t know if this was going to happen, but we all knew that it should happen.”

Arbery was killed on Feb. 23, while out for a jog. It wasn't until two months later that his story went viral prompting an investigation by the GBI after the local D.A., who was previously over the case, declined to make any arrests.

According to jail records, 50-year-old Bryan was booked into the Glynn County Jail on charges of felony murder and criminal attempt to commit false imprisonment. Bryan made his first court appearance on Friday (May 22) where his lawyer filed a motion for a speedy trial.

Bryan accompanied father and son, Gregory McMichael, 64 and Travis McMichael, 34, as they followed and cornered 25-year-old Arbery before the younger McMichael shot him to death. The McMichaels claim the shooting was self-defense.

Father and son were arrested for aggravated assault and felony murder earlier in the month. All three men are being held at the same jail.

The mugshots of Gregory and Travis McMichael, who have been charged with the murder of Ahmaud Arbery. pic.twitter.com/O0M6vPMs1Q

— Yamiche Alcindor (@Yamiche) May 8, 2020

Merrit noted that Arbery's family hopes the men will be convicted. “Well obviously we want to see the arrests lead to a formal indictment then a vigorous prosecution and conviction. But there are other people we believe were involved. We spoke with the DOJ earlier today about their investigation into the corruption that delayed these arrests in the first place.”

An attorney for the elder McMichael claimed that the pair are victims of a  “narrative driven by an incomplete set of facts.”

“While the death of Ahmaud Arbery is a tragedy, causing deep grief to his family -- a tragedy that at first appears to many to fit into a terrible pattern in American life -- this case does not fit that pattern,” attorney Frank Hogue said. “The full story, to be revealed in time, will tell the truth about this case.”

The murder remains under investigation by GBI in partnership with the District Attorney Joyette Holmes of the Cobb County District Attorney’s Office.

See more on Bryan's arrest in the video below.

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