Archives

Finding The GOAT Group: The Roots vs. Wu-Tang Clan. Who Is Better?

“Finding the GOAT Group,” the fourth installment of Ambrosia For Heads’ annual competition series features Hip-Hop’s greatest collectives vying for the #1 spot. Sixty-two groups have been pre-selected by a panel of experts, and one slot will be reserved for a wild-card entry (which has been determined), including the possibility... Read more

Finding The GOAT Group: Black Star vs. The Roots. Who Is Better?

“Finding the GOAT Group,” the fourth installment of Ambrosia For Heads’ annual competition series features Hip-Hop’s greatest collectives vying for the #1 spot. Sixty-two groups have been pre-selected by a panel of experts, and one slot will be reserved for a wild-card entry (which has been determined), including the possibility for... Read more

Finding The GOAT Group: The Roots vs. Atmosphere. Who Is Better?

“Finding the GOAT Group,” the fourth installment of Ambrosia For Heads’ annual competition series features Hip-Hop’s greatest collectives vying for the #1 spot. Sixty-two groups have been pre-selected by a panel of experts, and one slot will be reserved for a wild-card entry (which has been determined), including the possibility for... Read more

Finding The GOAT Group: The Roots vs. Freestyle Fellowship. Who Is Better?

“Finding the GOAT Group,” the fourth installment of Ambrosia For Heads’s annual battle series features Hip-Hop’s greatest collectives vying for the #1 spot. Sixty-two groups have been pre-selected by a panel of experts, and one slot will be reserved for a wild-card entry, including the possibility for write-in candidates, to... Read more

The Roots Use Ghostface Killah’s Music To Signal Hillary Clinton Is “Mighty Healthy” (Video)

Throughout their tenure on "The Tonight Show With Jimmy Fallon" (and previously, "Late Night..."), The Roots have had fun with their musical post. Band leader Questlove, Black Thought, Tuba Gooding, Jr., Captain Kirk Douglas and the rest of the crew have jammed with some incredible musicians, partook in more than... Read more

Common Still Loves H.E.R. Watch Him Breakdance While The Roots Play (Video)

During The Electric Circus and Like Water For Chocolate tours, it was not uncommon to see Common Sense bust out some B-Boy moves during his sets. That was 15 years ago though, and also well before the Chicago, Illinois MC/actor won Oscars and Golden Globes. Now a household name, juggling... Read more

Questlove Animates His Journey To Eat Patti Labelle’s Soul Cooking (Video)

Beyond a drummer, DJ, musical supervisor, and producer, Ahmir "Questlove" Thompson is a foodie. Followers of the Grammy Award-winning Philadelphia, Pennsylvania native's social platforms know, as well as his friends and acquaintances, that ?uest is out for the finest in global culinary offerings. Never shy from a celebrity story, Questlove... Read more

Jon Stewart Looks Back At Premiering The Roots On TV In 1995 (Video)

In the last 15 years, Jon Stewart's "The Daily Show" has been a destination for some Hip-Hop-savvy performances. Sitting down with another TV host Head, Jimmy Fallon, Jon Stewart looked across the set at The Roots. Casually, Stewart (who is promoting the new film he co-produced, Rose Water) recalled giving... Read more

Chris Rock Says Pootie Tang Is His Junior M.A.F.I.A. LP, Debates PM Dawn’s & J Dilla’s Impact (Audio)

If you enjoyed Chris Rock and Tracy Morgan naming their Top 5 MCs in honor of the film, Top 5, you'll love this. Chris Rock, joined by Questlove, swung through Cipha Sounds and Peter Rosenberg's Juan Epstein podcast. There, the four Heads engage in a casual, very free-flowing discussion about... Read more

Public Enemy Performs One Of Their Earliest, Biggest Hits With The Roots (Video)

While 1988 would be the year Public Enemy's seminal It Takes A Nation Of Millions To Hold Us Back, 1987 is integral to the story. That would be the year that the Long Island collective dropped their debut album, Yo! Bum Rush The Show. The album was a homogenous blend... Read more

Questlove Says That The Late, Great Robin Williams Was A Roots Head

In the last 24 hours, the world mourns the death of Robin Williams. On August 11, the Academy Award-winning film actor, television star, voice-actor, and stand-up comedian was found dead in his Hollywood, California. While reports are still confirming the cause of death from what appears to be suffocation, an... Read more

The Roots’ Longtime Manager & Producer Rich Nichols Passes Away

With his name in the liners as far back as Illadelph Halflife, producer Richard Nichols was an integral part of The Roots. Producer, executive, and manager, Nichols was never credited as a member of the Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Hip-Hop band, but was highly involved in their studio work and even transition... Read more

DJ Jazzy Jeff, Questlove & James Poyser Form Like Voltron To Support One New Artist, But Who? (Video)

In the early 2000s, between Grammy awards going to The Roots and Neo-Soul climbing the charts, Philadelphia was a hot-bed of talent. At venues like The Black Lily and The Five Spot, artists from various pockets of sound were hanging out, collaborating, and making a case why Philly is The... Read more

De La Soul Presented With Webby Awards’ Artist Of The Year By Questlove (Video)

Only releasing a mixtape and a handful of loose tracks in the last 12 months, De La Soul received Artist Of The Year honors at the 18th annual Webby Awards. The Long Island, New York trio was presented with the award (by De La disciple, Ahmir "?uestlove" Thompson of The... Read more

The Roots’ Never Gets A Live Choral Flip, With DJ A-Trak On The Cut (Video)

Released yesterday, The Roots' ...And Then You Shoot Your Cousin steps further in the direction that the group has been heading since parting ways with MCA/Geffen Records a decade ago. Dark, thoughtful, and often veiled in the perspectives and voices of others, the Philadelphia group is making quite different music... Read more

Questlove & Black Thought Talk 25 Years Of The Roots, Where The Last 5 Albums Fit In With The First 6 (Video)

Late last week, Heads saw Black Thought freestyle over a Questlove beat, with the funky drummer on the cut, no less. From that same interview, Tariq and Amir sat down with Sway Calloway on his Hip Hop Nation show, to talk about 25 years of the crew. In this hour-plus... Read more

The Roots Let Heads Listen Early To …And Then You Shoot Your Cousin In Its Entirety (Album Stream)

Between Masta Ace's crew, J-Live, and now The Roots' latest album, today (May 13) is a day for the books in terms of album streams. Out of nowhere, ?uestlove, Black Thought, Tuba Gooding, Jr. and the rest of The Roots crew liberated their latest in-house LP (due May 20), ...And Then... Read more

NBA Bans L.A. Clippers Owner Donald Sterling For Life, Hip-Hop Artists React

Earlier today, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver announced a lifetime ban sanctioned against 30-plus-year owner of the Los Angeles Clippers, Donald Sterling. The streamed and televised press conference took place following a week where racist remarks from Sterling during a phone-called were leaked to website TMZ.com. Additionally, Sterling will be forced... Read more

The Roots Open Up A New Chamber With Raheem DeVaughn on Tomorrow (Audio)

Some say that since 2004's The Tipping Point, Black Thought and The Roots crew have been making nothing short of dark albums. Although the acclaim continues to grow for the Philadelphia mainstays, radio play and Top 40 alludes the former Geffen/MCA Records three-time Grammy Award-winners. Well, as ...& Then You... Read more

The Roots Announce Their Next Album Is Less Than 6 Weeks Away

Earlier this week, The Roots dropped off "When The People Cheer," their first completely in-house, new music in over a year. ?uestlove, Black Thought, Tuba Gooding, Jr. and the rest of the crew have now announced, via Def Jam Records, that their next studio album is coming May 19. No... Read more

The Roots Premiere A New Song That Speaks To Everyman (Audio)

Although The Roots worked with Elvis Costello in 2013, it's been some months since the Heads were treated to a completely Roots Crew jam. That changed today with "When The People Cheer." While the record might sound entertainment-specific in the title, it's some great Everyman Rap that furthers the tradition... Read more

Rick Ross Performing The Devil Is A Lie With The Roots Is One Of The Hardest Fallon Musical Moments (Video)

When you think about it, "The Devil Is A Lie" is the type of musical presentation and message that would work for either Rick Ross or The Roots. Perhaps at opposite ends of the Def Jam Records roster, The Roots Crew's albums like Rising Down, How I Got Over, and... Read more

Fact Or Fiction: John Cusack A Graffiti-Writing B-Boy? (Photos)

In the 1980s, John Cusack was something of an Everyman. The Illinois native appeared in a host of teen comedies, usually playing likeable, nerdy guys with the best of intentions. He was a boombox-blaring romantic in Say Anything, a suicidal hamburger cook in the black comedy Better Off Dead, and... Read more

Raekwon & The Roots Rock That Incarcerated Scarfaces. Sounds So Lovely With a Live Band (Video)

This week in Brooklyn, OkayPlayer threw their annual Holiday Jam. Special guest Raekwon hit the stage with the full Roots crew, and DJ J. Period on the decks. Rae performed his Purple Tape joint "Incarcerated Scarfaces," with Black Thought providing extensive support vocals. It's cool how they riff on the... Read more

?uestlove Explains Being A Music Snob, Putting Off Q-Tip & Others With Nerdery (Video)

Is Head an easy and endearing way of calling ourselves "music snobs"? Vanity Fair has a Music Snob series, and stops in with Ahmir "?uestlove" Thompson—easily known as The Roots band-leader and drummer, but at a closer look, a composer who's remixed Marvin Gaye deep cuts, made a Jazz album... Read more

Thundercat & The Roots – Heartbreaks + Setbacks Performance (Video)

One of the best parts about having The Roots on "Late Night" with Jimmy Fallon is the exposure to new music. Heads can often hope that whether Mac Miller's artistic evolution, De La Soul deep cuts, or Big K.R.I.T's breakthrough, that bedrooms and living-rooms everywhere are getting exposed to better... Read more

Elvis Costello & The Roots Perform Wise Up Ghost (Video)

Fresh off of the Blue Note Records release of the album sharing the name, Elvis Costello & The Roots' perform "Wise Up Ghost" at one of ?uestlove's favorite hangouts/DJ venues: Brooklyn Bowl. The stage lighting captures the themes of the song perfectly. Related: Elvis Costello & The Roots – Walk... Read more

Kanye West Performs “Bound 2” With The Roots & Charlie Wilson (Video)

In trademark Kanye West fashion, the impresario stopped by NBC Studios last night for an impromptu appearance on "Late Night With Jimmy Fallon." There, he linked up with former Larry Gold Studios homies and OkayPlayer glory-days conglomerates The Roots to perform my personal favorite song from Yeezus (for the very... Read more

Elvis Costello & The Roots – Wise Up Ghost (Album Stream)

I've been a big fan of Elvis Costello since before I even heard The Roots. My uncle's cassette collection put me onto the cool melodies and whimsical songwriting of the Brit Punk/New Wave alum. When it was first announced that these two veteran acts, I was excited (but unsure) of... Read more

?uestlove Speaks at the Red Bull Lecture Series (Video)

This Red Bull Lecture series has been dope so far. This week's installment with ?uestlove makes it even better. ?uest drops a wealth of knowledge about The Legendary Roots Crew, working on Fallon and music, generally...and, he even gets on the drums. This is one of the most intellectual discussions... Read more

Questlove and D’Angelo Discuss Their Mutual Love of Prince (Video)

Here's a little something for the Prince stans out there. Questlove and D'Angelo share the story of how their mutual love of Prince brought them together. Check out the video. Related: D’Angelo and ?uestlove perform in Brooklyn (Video)... Read more

A behind the scenes look at D’Angelo’s return to music through the eyes of ?uestlove (Video)

Last year, D'Angelo rocked the music world with an unannounced return to the stage, after more than 10 years, at the Bonnaroo festival. Here's a behind the scenes look at the rehearsals and preparation of D's return, through the eyes of ?uestlove. Check out the video. Related: D’Angelo performs She... Read more

?uestlove Interview with The Bee Shine (Video)

The mighty ?uestlove is one of hip-hop's most stately ambassadors.  Here's an introspective interview where he discusses his love for music, how Whitney Houston's death caused him to change his lifestyle, the difficulty with maintaining dignity as a hip-hop artist and more.  Check out the video. Related: A Day in... Read more

The Cleveland Show – Menace II Secret Society (Full Episode)

Here's the full video for the recent episode featuring ?uestlove, Nicki Minaj, Will.I.Am, Bruno Mars & Kanye West. Related: A day in the life of ?uestlove (Video)  ... Read more

Kanye West, ?uestlove, Nicki Minaj, Bruno Mars, will.i.am, and ?uestlove appear on The Cleveland Show (Video)

The season premiere of The Cleveland Show hits the air on Sunday and features guest appearances from Kanye West, ?uestlove, Nicki Minaj, Bruno Mars, and will.i.am. The artists play members of a secret hip-hop society that ask Cleveland to kill super-famous rapper Kenny West's career. Check out the trailer for... Read more

?uestlove writes a heartfelt tribute to the legacy of Don Cornelius

Here's a moving piece from ?uestlove about the cultural impact of Don Cornelius and Soul Train. An excerpt is below and you can read the full article here. "you guys see this bag? this bag has NEVER left my side for the past 14 years. I deemed it imperative that... Read more

?uestlove speaks on Heavy D

Here's a brilliant article by ?uestlove on his relationship with Heavy D.  Read all the way to the end.  The build up is long, but the payoff is worth it.  People forget.  In addition to his hits (click here for our Heavy D tribute playlist),  Hev was one of the... Read more

?uestlove breaks down the story behind The Roots upcoming Undun album (Video)

He discusses how the album is a concept album and why having the steady gig on The Jimmy Fallon show has given The Roots the security to fully pursue their artistic freedom.  Given how much The Roots have already pushed the boundaries of hip-hop, this album should be extremely interesting. ... Read more

The Roots recently linked with Rakim to celebrate the 25th Anniversary of Paid in Full. Here’s some footage (not nearly enough) of the performance and some interviews with ?uestlove, Black Thought, and Rakim Allah.

Props to MTV.com for the news brief. Also, if you missed it, click here to check out our back in the day mix that centers on the late 80's/early 90's era that birthed Rakim. Tags: MTV Shows If you missed our back in the day mix, which focuses on that... Read more

?uestlove has long been one of the more fascinating personalities in hip-hop but has he always been like that?

Check out how he was when he was 17 from the latest episode of MTV's When I was 17.... Read more

KiD CuDi seems a lot happier when he's perfoming. Maybe Mr. Rager is just for the studio. Check out his performance of REVOFEV on the Conan O'Brien Show.

It's pretty dope that he's wearing a Prince shirt too. Speaking of Prince, in the latest issue of Rolling Stone magazine, ?uestlove lists his top 10 favorite Prince songs of all time.  One of them is this extended version of Little Red Corvette that is super ill: .... Read more