T.I.'s Grand Hustle Launches Comedy Division

ImageT.I.’s Grand Hustle Entertainment is branching into the world of comedy with the label’s latest venture, Grand Hustle Comedy and a comedy tour, which is scheduled to launch February 15 in Omaha, Nebraska.

The management and booking firm for upcoming comedians was launched by comedian Roland "Lil’ Duval" Powell and Grand Hustle VP, Clay Evans.

According to Evans, the comedy division will utilize Grand Hustle’s contacts in the entertainment industry to offer comics a variety of services and career opportunities.

"As the Grand Hustle brand continues to grow, Grand Hustle Comedy will have an opportunity to tap into resources most comics don’t have or even think to seek out," Evans said. "We want to help underground comedians not only bring their careers above ground, but also attain the type of longevity you can only get by diversifying your exposure."

Powell and Evans said the firm decided to launch the first Grand Hustle Comedy Tour after the success of the Grand Hustle produced Atlanta showcase "Trippin’ On Tuesday," which ran at the Uptown Comedy Club from August 2006-2007.

In addition to Powell who will act as host, comedians Kool Aid, Martina Harris, Dirty South and Grand Hustle comic Jay Ski will be featured on the tour, which will audition local comics for an opportunity to perform and be discovered.

"As an African-American comic, there’s often a limit to the level of success you can attain, especially in the mainstream," Powell added. "We want to take our comedians beyond stand-up and music videos. Because of who we are, we can create platforms for exposure that meld the worlds of music, comedy and film."

Powell is also working on a comedy album that will mesh his brand of comedy with some of today’s biggest Hip-Hop artists.

Tentatively titled Dat Boy Funny, the album will feature new music by Rich Boy, Young Joc, Plies, Mistah F.A.B., Rap-A-Lot recording artists Trae and Z-Ro, and new Atlantic Records artist B.O.B.

Tour dates are still being added to the Grand Hustle Comedy Tour.

Confirmed dates are listed below:

Feb. 15: Omaha, NE
Feb. 16: Mobile, AL
Feb. 23: University of Maryland, Eastern Shore in Princess Anne, MD
Feb 28: Lil Duval, Mike Epps, Orlando, Florida
Feb. 29 - March 2  St. Louis, Missouri