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Questlove remembers the exact moment when the Roots became passé. In Mo’ Meta Blues, the memoir he published last year, the renowned drummer, bandleader, producer, DJ, and all-around music geek flashes back to the filming of Michel Gondry’s concert film Dave Chappelle’s Block Party in 2004:… More »

The first thing to understand about Wise Up Ghost is that it isn’t a vanity project. Yes, the new LP, released yesterday on Blue Note, is a full-length collaboration between Elvis Costello and the Roots. And yes, full-length collaborations between well-known artists sometimes end up as mere historical curiosities (Jay-Z and R. Kelly’s Best OfMore »

Since forming in Philadelphia 25 years ago (yes, it really has been that long), the Roots have become one of the most innovative, progressive, and influential acts in the history of hip-hop. Originally coming up in age where artists like A Tribe Called Quest and De La Soul helped define what the left-of-center end of… More »

More "The Roots" stories

Watch ScHoolboy Q Play Fallon

ScHoolboy Q landed on our latest Best Songs Of The Week with “Break The Bank,” but it was another Oxymoron cut, the Chromatics-sampling “Man Of The Year,” that the Black Hippy rapper took to Late Night last night. Watch Q make his network television debut backed by the Roots below. More »

By: Scott Lapatine / January 25, 2014 - 5:48 pm

Elvis Costello & The Roots – “Cinco Minutos Con Vos (Karriem Riggins Remix)”

Jazz drummer/hip-hop producer/occasional rapper Karriem Riggins released his 34 track album Alone/Together last year, and it is arguably one of the most memorable instrumental records of 2012. Riggins has produced for the Roots in the past, so it’s no surprise that he is featured on five of the seven tracks of the Black Friday Record… More »

By: Gabriela Tully Claymore / December 2, 2013 - 11:42 am

Watch M.I.A. Play With The Roots On Fallon

M.I.A. stopped by 6A last night to perform “Come Walk With Me” with the Roots, but not before talking to Jimmy Fallon about the time she embarrassed herself in front of them at a Japanese club. It’s a rare live band performance for the rapper and you can watch it along with the interview below. More »

By: Scott Lapatine / November 8, 2013 - 8:01 am

Watch Dierks Bentley & The Roots Cover Pearl Jam’s “Alive” With Mike McCready

Late Night With Jimmy Fallon’s Pearl Jam Week has already brought us PJ covers from the grungy/rootsy team of Chris Cornell and the Avett Brothers and the Foxy/Grizzly pairing of Robin Pecknold and Dan Rossen. Wednesday, country rocker Dierks Bentley got in the act by covering the stadium-killer “Alive,” arguably Pearl Jam’s signature song, with… More »

By: Chris DeVille / October 24, 2013 - 11:21 am

Stream Elvis Costello & The Roots Wise Up Ghost WFUV Live Special

Earlier this year, Elvis Costello and the Roots joined forces for a collaborative LP, Wise Up Ghost. While their unexpected union is already enough of a music nerd’s delight, listening to Costello and Questlove talk about how the project came together is essential, as well. The two recently stopped by Fordham University’s WFUV to talk… More »

By: Claire Lobenfeld / October 21, 2013 - 11:23 am

Watch Thundercat Play Fallon

On the heels of the release of his sophomore album Apocalypse this summer, Thundercat stopped by Late Night With Jimmy Fallon last week to sit in with the Roots. He also performed a web exclusive rendition of his Flying Lotus-assisted track “Heartbreaks + Setbacks,” which you can now watch below. The Los Angeles musician embark… More »

By: James Rettig / October 1, 2013 - 5:28 pm

Watch Elvis Costello & The Roots Play Fallon Again

One nice thing about being the house band on a TV show: When you’ve got some new shit out, you get to do a nice amount of promotion for it. The Roots, who have a plum day job at Late Night With Jimmy Fallon, just released Wise Up Ghost, their unlikely collaborative album with Elvi… More »

By: Tom Breihan / September 20, 2013 - 9:39 am

Watch Elvis Costello & The Roots Play Fallon

Elvis Costello and the Roots first worked together on the Late Night With Jimmy Fallon stage, and now they’ve teamed up to make the surprisingly seamless collaborative album Wise Up Ghost, on which Costello’s burr meshes with the Roots’ hard-swinging old-school funk in a not-remotely-forced sort of way. Last night, Costello and the Roots played… More »

By: Tom Breihan / September 18, 2013 - 9:08 am

Watch Elvis Costello & The Roots Cover The Specials & John Lennon In Brooklyn

Last night Elvis Costello and the Roots celebrated the release of their robust collaborative LP Wise Up Ghost with a one-off, sold out concert at Brooklyn Bowl in Williamsburg. Along with funky cuts from the new album and slightly revamped takes on classic Costello (“Watching The Detectives,” “Shabby Doll,” an extended “I Want You”), the… More »

By: Scott Lapatine / September 17, 2013 - 12:55 pm

Watch Kanye West Perform “Bound 2″ On Fallon

Kanye made a surprise appearance on last night’s Late Night With Jimmy Fallon. In town after New York Fashion Week, where he hung out with Terry Richardson at Alexander Wang, the rapper stopped by 6B to perform Yeezus’ second single “Bound 2″ live for the first time with Charlie Wilson and the Roots. He also… More »

By: Scott Lapatine / September 10, 2013 - 8:24 am

Stream Elvis Costello & The Roots Wise Up Ghost

This week in unexpected matchups: Elvis Costello and the Roots — who would seem to have nothing in common beyond historic excellence, omnivorous taste, and late-night TV presence — have gone and made a whole album together. It’s called Wise Up Ghost, and we’ve already posted the single “Walk Us Uptown,” so there’s been plenty… More »

By: Tom Breihan / September 9, 2013 - 11:03 am

Watch Goodie Mob Play Fallon With The Roots

Atlanta rap greats, one of the greatest groups in the genre’s history, are back together and getting ready to release a new album called Age Against The Machine. Earlier this week, they released their confusing chaotic mess of a video for “I’m Set,” so it’s nice to see them doing something different right away. O… More »

By: Tom Breihan / August 2, 2013 - 5:12 pm

Watch J Mascis Sit In With The Roots On Fallon

A pair of prolific lifechampions joined forces last night, when J and Questo and the rest of the Roots jammed on a series of bumpers, walk-on songs, and covers (Daft Punk’s “Get Lucky,” Black Sabbath’s “War Pigs”) on Late Night With Jimmy Fallon. A legitimate opportunity to make meme-magic was lost, though, when Jimmy asked… More »

By: Amrit Singh / July 30, 2013 - 10:49 am

Watch The Lonely Island Do “YOLO” On Fallon With The Roots And Fallon

New Order weren’t the only musical guests on Late Night With Jimmy Fallon last night. Fallon’s fellow SNL alums the Lonely Island were also on the show, and they did an elaborately choreographed version of their Adam Levine/Kendrick Lamar Digital Short nugget “YOLO,” with the Roots backing them up. And since Levine and Kendrick weren’t… More »

By: Tom Breihan / July 26, 2013 - 9:53 am

Elvis Costello & The Roots – “Walk Us Uptown”

ELvis Costello and the Roots have worked together before, including a jam session on Colbert back in 2009, and last year, when they joined forces to do a Springsteen cover on Fallon. It was announced back in January of this year that Costello and the Roots would be teaming up on an LP, and since… More »

By: Michael Nelson / July 22, 2013 - 11:46 am

Hangout 2013 Saturday: Tom Petty, Kendrick Lamar, Public Enemy, & More

The Hangout organizers presumably intend the word “Hangout” to be read with leisurely fellowship in mind, and certainly that matches the vibe here in Gulf Shores. But one passable alternate reading is “hang out” as in “Letting it all hang out,” as in my bare gut protruding across my belt line, as in eating something… More »

By: Chris DeVille / May 19, 2013 - 3:24 pm

Watch Talib Kweli Play Fallon With Bilal & The Roots

The forever-sincere backpack-rap vet Talib Kweli is old buddies with the Roots, so anytime he’s got new music coming out, it’s a fair bet he’ll end up on Late Night With Jimmy Fallon, with the band backing him up. Kweli’s new album Prisoner Of Conscious is out soon, so last night, he was on Fallo… More »

By: Tom Breihan / April 25, 2013 - 10:06 am

Watch Major Lazer Play Fallon With Dirty Projectors & The Roots

If you caught any of Major Lazer’s frantic, fun-as-hell festival-rocking live shows over the last few years, you likely saw girls twerking on speaker-risers, Skerritt Bwoy performing death-defying feats of daggering, and Diplo perched behind his DJ table, looking vaguely bemused at the whole spectacle. But the Major Lazer that appeared last night on LateMore »

By: Tom Breihan / April 12, 2013 - 8:52 am

Watch Ghostface Killah Play Fallon With The Roots, Masta Killa, Killah Priest

Next week, Ghostface Killah will release Twelve Reasons To Die, the soul-rap concept album he made with the producer and composer Adrian Younge. Last night, he stopped by Late Night With Jimmy Fallon to perform the album track “I Declare War,” and he had a pretty amazing cast of supporting players with him: the Roots,… More »

By: Tom Breihan / April 9, 2013 - 10:26 am
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