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A fan-favorite band from Ukraine advances to the Eurovision grand final

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Members of Ukraine’s band “Kalush Orchestra” celebrate their qualification during the first semifinal of the Eurovision Song contest 2022 on Tuesday at the Palalpitour venue in Turin. The second semifinal is on Thursday, with the grand final set for Saturday.

Marco Bertorello/AFP via Getty Images


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Members of Ukraine’s band “Kalush Orchestra” celebrate their qualification during the first semifinal of the Eurovision Song contest 2022 on Tuesday at the Palalpitour venue in Turin. The second semifinal is on Thursday, with the grand final set for Saturday.

Marco Bertorello/AFP via Getty Images

Ten countries advanced last night from the first round of Eurovision semi-finals to the final round of the songwriting competition, which will take place on Saturday in Turin, Italy.

Among them was Ukraine, represented by rap-folk band Kalush Orchestra. The three-member group — with their iconic pink bucket hat, energetic breakdancer and colorful traditional clothing — is favored to win the competition, with bookmaker Parimatch Ukraine putting their odds at 73% on Wednesday. (Votes are cast by professional juries and viewers from the participating countries.)

They received a standing ovation after last night’s performance, during which Ukraine’s Eurovision commentator could be seen broadcasting from a bomb shelter. And it wasn’t just Ukrainian fans rooting for them: Acts from other countries, including Lithuania and Iceland, showed their support for Ukraine with statements and symbols.

The core members of the group, which was founded as Kalush in 2019, are Oleh Psiuk, multi-instrumentalist Ihor Didenchuk, and dancer Vlad Kurochka, also known as MC Kilimmen.

They launched Kalush Orchestra, which combines hip-hop with elements of traditional Ukrainian folk music, in 2021 with additional musicians, including Tymofii Muzychuk, Vitalii Duzhyk, and Dzhonni Dyvny.

The band’s Eurovision entry, “Stefania,” is a unique earworm combining old Ukranian melodies and traditional flute with contemporary beats and rap. The performance itself included both folk dancing and break dancing, and the musicians wore a mix of embroidered Cossack shirts and modern streetwear.


Eurovision Song Contest
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Psiuk wrote “Stefania” about his own mother before Russia launched its full-scale invasion of Ukraine. Since then, many Ukrainians have come to associate the song — with translated lyrics like “I will always walk to you by broken roads” and “the field blooms, but she is turning gray” — with their own motherland.

“After it all started with the war and the hostilities, it took on additional meaning, and many people started seeing it as their mother, Ukraine, in the meaning of the country,” Psiuk told the Associated Press last week. “It has become really close to the hearts of so many people in Ukraine.”

The song has broad popularity in countries across northern Europe, where it’s climbing up several Spotify charts.

While Eurovision calls itself a nonpolitical event, Russia’s war in Ukraine has loomed large in the international competition. Organizers banned Russian acts back in February, and Kalush Orchestra replaced Ukraine’s original contestant, Alina Pash, after the country’s national broadcaster suspended her while investigating a 2015 trip she made to Crimea.

The all-male group needed special permission from Ukrainian authorities to travel to Italy for the contest, as the country has banned men of fighting age from leaving the country. One original band member stayed behind to fight, the AP reports, and all plan to return to Ukraine after Eurovision ends.

While they are hoping to boost Ukrainians’ morale with a win, they have said in interviews that shining a global spotlight on the country’s culture and identity is in itself a form of victory.

“We understand that we must be totally focused and concentrated, because we are here to show that Ukrainian culture and Ukrainian music exist,” Psiuk said at a press conference, according to an English translation. “They are alive and they have a very beautiful and special signature. So we are totally focused on this purpose.”

This story originally appeared in the Morning Edition live blog.





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Carlos Santana updates fans after he collapses on stage during concert in Michigan

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Carlos Santana collapsed throughout a live performance on the Pine Knob Music Theatre in Clarkston, Michigan, on July 5.

Amy Harris/Invision/AP

Music legend Carlos Santana was taken to a hospital on Tuesday, July 5, after he collapsed on stage of a Michigan live performance, in response to his administration group.

Concertgoers on the Pine Knob Music Theatre in Clarkston, about 40 miles northwest of Detroit, mentioned they have been asked to pray for the famed guitarist after he suffered a medical incident throughout Tuesday’s present.

Gary Graff, a music journalist who attended the present, mentioned Santana was taken away on a stretcher about 20 minutes after he collapsed.

A black curtain was draped over the stage as Santana was tended to, however he was seen waving to fans as he was being taken away.

Santana, 74, was taken to the McLaren Clarkston hospital, the place his administration mentioned he was being treated for heat exhaustion and dehydration.

In an replace on his private Fb web page, Santana thanked his followers for his or her prayers and mentioned he and his spouse have been “simply taking it simple.”

“Forgot to eat and drink water so I (acquired) dehydrated and handed out,” he said on Facebook. “Blessing and miracles to you all.”

The musician’s live performance with Earth, Wind & Hearth scheduled for July 6 in Burgettstown, Pennsylvania, was postponed.

In February, Santana and members of his band tested positive for COVID-19, forcing them to cancel tour dates.

He additionally canceled reveals of his Las Vegas residency in December after he underwent an unscheduled heart procedure, he mentioned in a video posted to Twitter.

Mike Stunson covers real-time information for McClatchy. He’s a 2011 Western Kentucky College graduate who has beforehand labored on the Paducah Solar and Madisonville Messenger as a sports activities reporter and the Lexington Herald-Chief as a breaking information reporter.
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Defiant Boris Johnson vows to ‘keep going’ as resignations pile up

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LONDON — A defiant Boris Johnson insisted now shouldn’t be the time to stop as U.Okay. prime minister, whilst resignations from his authorities continued to mount and Conservative MPs pressed forward with a plan to take away him.

Talking within the Home of Commons in entrance of stony-faced Tory MPs Wednesday, Johnson — hit Tuesday night by the exit of two senior Cupboard ministers and additional lower-level resignations since — argued it’s “precisely when occasions are robust” that his authorities ought to press on.

“The job of a main minister in troublesome circumstances, when he’s been handed a colossal mandate, is to maintain going and that’s what I’m going to do,” Johnson mentioned, when challenged by his personal MPs on what precisely would immediate him to stop.

Opposition chief Keir Starmer repeatedly mocked Johnson within the fiery session of prime minister’s questions, and described the U.Okay. chief’s responses because the “dying acts of his political profession.”

In a withering assertion to the Commons following PMQs, Sajid Javid — whose resignation as well being secretary Tuesday started the wave of exits — hit out on the prime minister for sending colleagues out to defend the indefensible on tv. “Sooner or later we’ve got to conclude that sufficient is sufficient,” he instructed MPs. “I imagine that time is now. The reset button can solely work so many occasions.”

A string of revelations, first about coronavirus lockdown-busting events attended by key figures on the prime of British politics, together with Johnson himself, and later in regards to the authorities’s poor dealing with of successive allegations of abusive conduct by Conservative MPs, have shaken the prime minister’s grip on energy.

As of lunchtime Wednesday, he had been hit by greater than 15 resignations in lower than 24 hours. One minister within the setting division, Jo Churchill, stop just as Johnson got to his feet in the House of Commons.

Whereas Johnson is insisting he’ll battle on, and has moved to switch the important thing posts of chancellor and well being secretary vacated by Rishi Sunak and Javid respectively, he faces a renewed menace from his personal MPs.

Johnson can’t at the moment be challenged by his personal MPs for a yr as he received a confidence vote final month, however that might change if the 1922 committee of backbench Conservative lawmakers, assembly 4 p.m. U.Okay. time on Wednesday night, opts to vary celebration guidelines.

Anti-Johnson rebels had been planning to get themselves elected on to the highly effective group’s committee to vary the principles and mount one other problem to Johnson. However, in an indication of Johnson’s sapping authority, the prevailing govt is now anticipated to debate doing this even and not using a change in personnel.





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Parents of Highland Park suspect Robert Crimo III offer ‘thoughts and prayers’

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The mother and father of accused Highland Park mass shooter Robert Crimo III have supplied their “ideas and prayers” to victims — because it emerged the suspect’s dad helped him purchase his weapons even after he was marked a “clear and current hazard” over earlier loss of life threats towards his kin.

Bob Crimo and his spouse, Denise, broke their silence after retaining an area lawyer — one who simply hours earlier had been tweeting outrage on the high-powered weapons his new consumer helped his son purchase.

“We’re all moms and dads, sisters and brothers, and it is a horrible tragedy for a lot of households, the victims, the paradegoers, the neighborhood, and our personal,” the family said in a statement late Tuesday.

“Our hearts, ideas and prayers exit to all people.”

Their lawyer, Steve Greenberg of Greenberg Trial Attorneys, additionally stated that the mother and father additionally “request that each one respect their privateness as they attempt to kind [through] this tragedy.”

Bob Crimo and spouse Denise supplied their “ideas and prayers” over mass taking pictures their son has been charged with.
Handout
Robert Crimo
Crimo’s father, additionally named Robert, was seen close to the household residence.
DANIEL WILLIAM MCKNIGHT
Denise Crimo
Denise Crimo and husband, Bob, broke their silence after the taking pictures their son has been charged with.
Handout
Steve Greenberg tweets
The household’s lawyer, Steve Greenberg, launched the assertion after occurring an anti-assault rifle tirade

Earlier than being retained, Greenberg had gone on a tirade concerning the taking pictures and lack of gun-control legal guidelines.

“That is my hometown the place I grew up and raised my youngsters. WTF is improper with folks. Nobody wants these excessive powered weapons!!!!!” he said. “F [Ted Cruz], Mitch McConnell and all like them.”

He stated he stood by the tweet even because it emerged his new consumer, the suspect’s dad, performed a pivotal position in permitting his son to purchase weapons even after the 21-year-old wannabe rapper had threatened “to kill everybody” in his household in September 2019.

Greenberg had on Tuesday insisted that the dad — a one-time mayoral candidate — solely sponsored his son’s gun-buying spree as a result of he had no concept concerning the threats nor the gathering of 16 knives, a dagger and a sword that had been confiscated on the time.

Robert Crimo
The suspect’s dad, Bob Crimo, sponsored him so he may get weapons.
DANIEL WILLIAM MCKNIGHT
Suspect's dad, Bob Crimo
The couple’s lawyer stated they’re requesting privateness at the moment.
Twitter / @CrimoBob

Nevertheless, Illinois State Police insisted late Tuesday that when the risk was investigated, “importantly, the daddy claimed the knives had been his and so they had been being saved within the particular person’s closet for safekeeping.

“Primarily based upon that data, the Highland Park Police returned the knives to the daddy later that afternoon,” the drive stated.

The state drive confirmed that native police alerted them to the truth that Crimo must be handled as a “clear and current hazard.”

Suspected shooter Robert Crimo seen leaving the scene of the rampage
The suspect was in a position to purchase weapons regardless of being flagged as a “clear and current hazard.”
by way of REUTERS

Nevertheless, “there have been no arrests made within the September 2019 incident and nobody, together with household, was keen to maneuver ahead on a criticism nor did they subsequently present data on threats or psychological well being that might have allowed legislation enforcement to take extra motion,” the drive stated.

“Report signifies when police went to the house and requested the person if he felt like harming himself or others, he responded no,” the drive additionally acknowledged.

Robert Crimo III
Robert Crimo III purchased weapons regardless of earlier threatening to kill his household, police stated.
Highland Park by way of REUTERS

As a result of Crimo didn’t possess a state firearm homeowners identification (FOID) card that could possibly be revoked or have a pending software to disclaim, the state police involvement was closed, the drive stated.

However simply three months later, when Crimo was 19, his father sponsored him within the first of 4 FOID playing cards to get his small arsenal of weapons, police stated.

As a result of Crimo had not been arrested and his household didn’t press fees or elevate mental-health issues, Crimo was in a position to skip Illinois “crimson flag” legislation designed to forestall folks deemed to have violent tendencies from getting weapons.

Message at a Highland Park vigil says that "thoughts and prayers are not enough."
Message at a Highland Park vigil says that “ideas and prayers usually are not sufficient.”
Getty Photos

He handed 4 background checks within the buy of his weapons, all of them performed in 2020 and 2021, effectively after the 2019 incidents that drew police consideration, based on the state police.

He purchased a minimum of 5 weapons, together with the AR-15-style rifle allegedly used to kill seven folks and injure a minimum of 30 throughout the Fourth of July parade.

Regardless of his consumer’s position in serving to his son get weapons, Greenberg stood by his earlier assaults, saying, “I’m 100% anti assault weapons.”

He insisted the focus should be on state police, not his consumer.

Illinois State Police “ought to ask why did THEY approve a FOID card and why do THEY permit the sale of assault weapons?” he tweeted.

Crimo was on Tuesday charged with seven counts of first-degree homicide and faces a compulsory life sentence if convicted.





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