The Roots

The Roots Biography

The Roots

The Roots, an American jazz/hip-hop jam band best known as the house band for Jimmy Fallon’s Late Night and The Tonight Show (2009–14) and The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon (2014–). Black Thought (Tariq Trotter; b. October 3, 1971, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States) and drummer Questlove (or?uestlove; Ahmir Khalib Thompson; b. January 20, 1971, Philadelphia) were the group’s founding members.

When Black Thought and Questlove met as students at the Philadelphia High School for the Creative and Performing Arts in 1987, they formed the group. They are the only members who have remained with the band throughout its career. They began performing on street corners in Philadelphia under the name the Square Roots. They began to make a reputation for themselves in Philadelphia and New York City clubs after the arrival of rapper Malik B (Malik Abdul Basit) and bassist Hub (Leonard Hubbard).

Organix (1993), the Roots’ debut album, was released in connection with a concert in Germany, and included keyboardist Scott Storch. The band received offers from large labels as a result of that album and their growing fame, and they signed with DGC Records. Do You Want More? (1994), the label’s inaugural album, featured contributions by human beatbox Rahzel (Rahzel Brown) and was noted for the musicians’ use of samples from other recordings, a staple of the art genre.

Things Fall Apart, released in 1999, was the band’s breakout album, receiving critical acclaim as well as commercial success. “You Got Me,” a collaboration with vocalist Erykah Badu from the album, won the Grammy Award for best rap performance by a duo or group in 2000.

The Roots continued to tour, record, and collaborate with other artists with a rotating lineup, releasing Phrenology (2002), The Tipping Point (2004), Game Theory (2006), and Rising Down (2008). In addition, the Roots supported rap superstar Jay Z on MTV Unplugged in 2001. (also released as the album Jay-Z Unplugged).

When Jimmy Fallon became a late-night talk-show host in 2008, he sought the Roots to serve as his backing band, claiming that they were the only group capable of providing outstanding and acceptable accompaniment music for vocalists of any genre. The decision sent shock waves all over the place. The Roots’ fans thought the structure was too limiting and degrading for a band that was widely recognized as outstanding. Network executives were concerned that a band known for incisive social criticism and for forging its own path would alienate sponsors and fans. In the end, the Roots proved to be a valuable asset to the talk show, which increased the band’s fanbase by allowing them to showcase hitherto unseen talents, including humorous ones. Fallon quit Late Night with Jimmy Fallon in 2014 to host The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon (2014–), which featured the Roots as the house band.

In addition, the Roots released the albums How I Got Over (2010) and Undun (2011), as well as collaborations with John Legend (Wake Up!, 2010), Betty Wright (Betty Wright: The Movie, 2011), and Elvis Costello (Wise Up Ghost, 2013).

Wake Up! won a Grammy for best R&B album in 2011, and the tune “Hang On in There” won a Grammy for best traditional R&B vocal performance. The Roots released their eleventh studio album,… Then You Shoot Your Cousin is a concept album with richly layered music that is meant to be a meditation on community violence.

Discography

Rising DownAppleYouTube
Game TheorySpotifyAppleYouTubeAmazon
The Tipping PointSpotifyAppleYouTubeAmazon
PhrenologySpotifyAppleYouTubeAmazon
Things Fall ApartSpotifyAppleYouTubeAmazon
Illadelph HalflifeSpotifyAppleYouTubeAmazon
Do You Want More?!!!??!SpotifyAppleYouTubeAmazon
Organix

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Frequently Asked Questions

Who Was The Lead Singer Of The Roots?

The lead singer for The Roots is Black Thought, also known as Tariq Trotter. He is a powerful rapper and one of the most respected MCs in the hip-hop community. He has been with The Roots since their formation in 1987 and is considered one of the group’s key members. Black Thought is known for his complex lyrics and his ability to freestyle, or improvise, rhymes. He is also a vocalist and sometimes plays the role of hype man during live performances.

What Is Genre Of The Roots Songs?

The Roots is an American hip hop band, formed in 1987 by Tariq “Black Thought” Trotter and Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States. The Roots currently serves as the house band on NBC’s The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon. The Roots are known for a jazzy and eclectic approach to hip-hop. This has led to them being dubbed “the first hip-hop band” by Rolling Stone magazine.

What One Is The Hit Songs Of The Roots?

Some of The Roots’ most popular songs include “The Seed (2.0),” “Don’t Feel Right,” and “Get Busy.” Their unique sound and thoughtful lyrics have resonated with fans for years, and their music continues to be popular today.

How Many Members Of The Roots?

There are nine members of the Roots. They are: Black Thought, Questlove, Captain Kirk Douglas, Kamal Gray, Hub, Mark Kelley, Owen Biddle, Damon Bryson, and James Poyser.

How Many Album Of The Roots?

The Roots have released twelve studio albums, three collaborative albums, and one compilation album.

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