Skip To Content
The Schmooze

Paul Simon, Awkwafina, And Kanye To Host Saturday Night Live

Paul Simon, modern Jewish prophet, gave his final live concert last Saturday night, in Corona, Queens, just minutes from his childhood home. “Strange times, aren’t they?” the 76-year-old said, staring up at the purple sky as an airplane few low, en route to La Guardia. He looked out at the crowds.

“Don’t give up,” he said.

Simon is one of a handful of artists whose names have been released as front liners for the first three episodes of Saturday Night Live season 44. Adam Driver, Awkwafina, and Seth Meyers will host the first three episodes, with Kanye West, Travis Scott, and Paul Simon, respectively, as musical guests.

Now lets break this eclectic group down:

Adam Driver, once Lena Dunham’s lover on “Girls” has launched a striking dramatic acting career, moving from smoldering villain in the new “Star Wars” movies to smoldering secret Jew in “BlacKkKlansman.” He is not actually Jewish. He is actually always smoldering.

Awkwafina is the rapper, entertainer, and comic actress who has began popping up delightfully in major blockbusters like “Oceans Eleven” and “Crazy Rich Asians.”

Seth Meyers has an almost Rachel Brosnahan-like Jewish confusability, but insists that he is not personally Jewish (he has Jewish heritage.) Nevertheless, he is the magnificently genial, occasionally smart-tongued host of “Late Night With Seth Meyers,” and came of age as head writer and weekend update host at SNL.

Kanye West is a world famous rapper who might be more famous, still, for his antics. He is married to Kim Kardashian West, and he strangely suggested that the controversial admitted-serial sexual harasser Louis CK host his show instead.

Travis Scott is a rapper and producer who is famously married to Kylie Jenner. It is tough to say to what percentage he is wanted on SNL for his rapping, and for what percentage he is wanted for his Kyle knowledge.

And finally! — Paul Simon, the only living boy in New York and the only full-fledged Jew on this list, will appear on SNL in his ninth time as musical guest. He has also hosted four times, and famously played on the show’s first broadcast after 9/11.

We’ve been saying hello to our old friend, darkness, a lot lately. We’ll be glad to say hi to Paul instead. We need the reminder: don’t give up.

Jenny Singer is the deputy lifestyle editor for the Forward. You can reach her at [email protected] or on Twitter @jeanvaljenny

I hope you appreciated this article. Before you go, I’d like to ask you to please support the Forward’s award-winning, nonprofit journalism during this critical time.

Now more than ever, American Jews need independent news they can trust, with reporting driven by truth, not ideology. We serve you, not any ideological agenda.

At a time when other newsrooms are closing or cutting back, the Forward has removed its paywall and invested additional resources to report on the ground from Israel and around the U.S. on the impact of the war, rising antisemitism and the protests on college campuses.

Readers like you make it all possible. Support our work by becoming a Forward Member and connect with our journalism and your community.

Make a gift of any size and become a Forward member today. You’ll support our mission to tell the American Jewish story fully and fairly. 

— Rachel Fishman Feddersen, Publisher and CEO

Join our mission to tell the Jewish story fully and fairly.

Republish This Story

Please read before republishing

We’re happy to make this story available to republish for free, unless it originated with JTA, Haaretz or another publication (as indicated on the article) and as long as you follow our guidelines. You must credit the Forward, retain our pixel and preserve our canonical link in Google search.  See our full guidelines for more information, and this guide for detail about canonical URLs.

To republish, copy the HTML by clicking on the yellow button to the right; it includes our tracking pixel, all paragraph styles and hyperlinks, the author byline and credit to the Forward. It does not include images; to avoid copyright violations, you must add them manually, following our guidelines. Please email us at [email protected], subject line “republish,” with any questions or to let us know what stories you’re picking up.

We don't support Internet Explorer

Please use Chrome, Safari, Firefox, or Edge to view this site.