9 Blerd Celebrities Who Are Taking Over Pop Culture

blerd keegan

Keegan-Michael Key

Keegan-Michael Key is a self-proclaimed “Blerd,” actor and comedian best known for starring in the Comedy Central sketch series Key & Peele, and for six seasons as a cast member on MADtv. He currently costars in the USA network comedy series, Playing House.

In an interview with CNN, Key spoke about the emergence of  Black nerds, pointing to President Obama as an example.

“Obama was the best thing for Black nerds everywhere. Finally we had a role model,” Peele humorously told reporters recently. “Before Obama, we basically had Urkel.”

Key attended the University of Detroit as an undergraduate and earned his Master of Fine Arts at the Pennsylvania State University School of Theatre.

blerd questlove

 Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson

Ahmir-Khalib “Questlove” Thompson is a drummer, DJ, music journalist and record producer. He is part of the award-winning hip-hop group The Roots, and is unarguably one of the best drummers in the music industry.

The Roots is currently the in-house band for The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, the same role he and the band served during the entire 969-episode run of Late Night with Jimmy Fallon.

Questlove also created Okayplayer.com, a website and artist collective that nurtures the careers of musicians including Common, Jill Scott, Erykah Badu, and The Foreign Exchange.

blerd tyler

Aisha Tyler

Aisha Tyler is an actress, comedian,  television host, author, writer, and music video director, known for her regular role as Andrea Marino in the first season of Ghost Whisperer and voicing Lana Kane in FX’s animated television series, Archer. In addition, she had recurring television acting roles in CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, Talk Soup, and Friends.

Tyler is currently a co-host of The Talk and the new host of Whose Line is it Anyway? She has also hosted the past three Ubisoft E3 press conferences.

Also impressive on Tyler’s resume is her degree in environmental policy from Dartmouth College.

blerd baratunde

Baratunde Thurston

Baratunde Thurston is a comedian, author, co-founder, and hashtagger-in-chief of Cultivated Wit.

He wrote a New York Times 2012 bestseller, How To Be Black and served half a decade as director of digital for the satirical news outlet, The Onion.

When he’s not delivering keynote talks at gatherings such as SXSW Interactive, the Tribeca Film Festival, and Personal Democracy Forum, he writes the monthly back-page column for Fast Company, and contributes to the MIT Media Lab as a director’s fellow.

He co-founded the Black political blog, Jack and Jill Politics and has advised the Obama White House. Thurston has more than 10 years experience in stand-up comedy.

He was educated at the Sidwell Friends School and Harvard University, where he graduated with a degree in philosophy.

Elon James White

Elon James White is an award-winning blogger, radio host, stand-up comedian, and self-proclaimed nerd.

White is also the founder and editor -in-chief of This Week in Blackness and the Black Comedy Experiment. White is the host of the radio show and web series This Week In Blackness, which has been featured on Crooks and Liars, Daily Kos, and Jack and Jill Politics.

White has appeared as a featured commentator on Melissa Harris-Perry’s MSNBC show, the VH1 series Black to the Future and The Great Debate, Current’s Viewpoint talk show, Countdown With Keith Olbermann, and The Joy Behar Show.

White was the recipient of four 2009 Black Weblog Awards for Best Humor Blog, Best MicroBlog (Twitter), Best Video Blog, and Blog of the Year.

White has a weekly podcast, We Nerd Hard.

One Reply to “9 Blerd Celebrities Who Are Taking Over Pop Culture”

  1. Melissa Perry-Harris on this list? Are you serious? Nothing Nerdish about her or her show. You missed out on some great ones like @BlackNerd, @BlackGirlNerds, Lavar Burton, @GeekSoulBrother and so many others, but you added someone who isn’t close to being one.

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