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The Roots, Joell Ortiz & Busta Rhymes Take Their Shot & Deliver An Amazing Performance (Video)

Last night (December 5), The Roots, Joell Ortiz and Busta Rhymes hit Jimmy Fallon's Tonight Show stage to perform their “Rise Up Remix" of the song “My Shot” from the recently-released The Hamilton Mixtape. Black Thought, Ortiz and Busta give a dramatic performance, providing a less story-driven rendition of Miranda’s... Read more

Black Thought Explains How He Constructs His Brilliant Rhymes

For more than 20 years, Black Thought has been one of the most consistent, prolific and greatest MCs in Hip-Hop. If he has been underrated, and that qualification becomes less applicable after each verse he smashes, it is solely because he has been a team player within the framework of... Read more

Questlove Gets Nostalgic About What Makes ’90s Hip-Hop So Important (Video)

When thinking of quintessential Hip-Hop from the 1990s, the Roots are, without question, included in the conversation. That makes it hard to remember that there was a time when Questlove, Black Thought, and the rest of the band were just fans of the genre and not recording artists. It wasn't... Read more

Dave Chappelle, De La Soul & More Celebrate the Obamas With a “Block Party” at the White House (Video)

Earlier this year, Dave Chappelle's Block Party celebrated its tenth anniversary, a milestone which allowed fans to reflect back on the film and its place in Hip-Hop history. A similar history was just made on Saturday Night Live, where the most recent episode sported Chappelle as host and A Tribe... Read more

David Blaine Produces A Live Frog From His Stomach. The Roots Freak Out (Video)

David Blaine has been performing for audiences for nearly two decades. While the magician and illusionist is always entertaining, there are times when people find the things he does to be downright scary. Whether it's levitating, taking the heads off of live chickens and re-attaching them, or driving ice picks... Read more

Black Thought & Daveed Diggs Get Busy On An Incredible Election Day Rap-Off (Video)

Today (November 8) is Election Day in the U.S., and millions will be casting their ballots in what is proving to be the most memorable election in modern history. Hip-Hop has been putting in serious overtime in getting out the vote, with Chance the Rapper headlining a "Parade to the... Read more

Black Thought, Busta Rhymes & Joell Ortiz Rise & Take Their Shot At Greatness (Audio)

Over the last year, the Broadway musical Hamilton has gone from critical darling to global phenomenon. The play, written by Lin-Manuel Miranda, re-wrote the rules for theater, bringing Hip-Hop to the fore, and tossing historical conventions, using a multicultural cast to portray the country's White founding fathers. The Roots Confirm... Read more

Scott Storch Details Going From Leaving The Roots To Making Hits With Dr. Dre (Video)

In Hip-Hop, Questlove and Black Thought have become household names. However, going back to Organix and the earliest album lineups of The Roots, there is arguably another. Scott Storch has become one of the most prolific, top-earning music producers of the 2000s. Beginning in 1999 with Dr. Dre's "Still D.R.E.,"... Read more

Common & The Roots Join Forces To Break The Cycle Of Ills Facing Black America (Video)

Earlier this month, Common was a surprise guest at The Roots Picnic New York. There, the Things Fall Apart, Rising Down, and Wake Up! featured MC performed his single "Black America Again" with The Roots crew in the misty rain for all of Bryant Park to hear. Last night (October 27),... Read more

The Roots & Phil Collins Made Us All Feel It In The Air Last Night (Video)

Phil Collins' 1981 hit "In The Air Tonight" has been covered by Lil' Kim (with Phil providing vocals). The Face Value single was also referenced in Eminem's "Stan" lyrics, sampled on Nas's definitive hit "One Mic," and interpolated by Tupac & Tha Outlawz. Collins appeared on The Tonight Show Starring... Read more

Questlove & Yasiin Bey Praise Bad Brains’ H.R. In An Upcoming Documentary (Video)

Since the late 1970s, Bad Brains changed the face of Punk Rock music. The Washington, D.C. collective was an all-Black band that blended the hard sounds of early Punk with messages associated with their Rastafarian beliefs. Songs like "Banned In D.C.," "Pay To Cum" and "Sailin' On" (all from their... Read more

The Roots Confirm 17th Album Title & Preview Some Sounds (Video)

It has been nearly two and a half years since The Roots released an album. 2014's ...And Then You Shoot Your Cousin featured Dice Raw as well as Raheem DeVaughn, and was rooted heavily in a cohesive theme. It was also largely co-produced by Richard Nichols, the band's longtime manager/producer,... Read more

De La Soul Performed Their Pete Rock Joint With Help From The Roots (Video)

Anybody who has gotten the chance to watch De La Soul perform live knows the Long Island, New York trio puts on one of the greatest shows in Hip-Hop. More than 25 years after dropping their debut LP 3 Feet High and Rising, Posdnuos, Dave, and Maceo are still able... Read more

Rahzel Provides Jewels On The History & Evolution Of Beatboxing (Video)

Rahzel The Godfather of Noyze has become one of the household names for beatboxing. The New Yorker and onetime member of The Roots has worked with a range of artists including Erykah Badu, Ben Harper, Common, Rakim, Everlast, and Sean Paul, among many others. With more than 20 years of... Read more

Dante Ross Wanted To Make O.D.B. & Method Man “The Next Run-D.M.C.”

In the canon of Hip-Hop music, Dante Ross may be what we now know as "the plug." From De La Soul to Missy Elliott, MF DOOM to Digital Underground, Lil Dicky to Brand Nubian, Dante has discovered some of Hip-Hop's most respected artists. Beyond simply the exploration, Ross has thrived... Read more

20 Years Later, The Roots Continue to Do What They Do Best: Shine For Hip-Hop (Video)

With content ranging from the ethereal "The Hypnotic" to the aggressive "Clones," September 1996's Illadelph Halflife was a bold look from the Roots. The Philadelphia, Pennsylvania group's third album, it took the musical concepts established on Jazz and improv-heavy formulas found on 1993's Organix and 1995's Do You Want More?!!!??!... 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

While Fallon Played With Trump’s Hair, The Roots Went For The Jugular (Video)

For the last 36 hours, the Internet and social media have been aflame with outrage at the way Jimmy Fallon handled a recent appearance by Donald Trump on The Tonight Show (9/15). Fallon, unlike David Letterman, Stephen Colbert and Jon Stewart, is typically friendly and jovial with all of his... Read more

Black Thought & Rahzel Made Us Want More With This 1994 Freestyle (Audio)

It was 1994, and The Roots had delivered their first offering via the previous year's Organix. Released independently, it was stripped-down yet fully developed, and helped land the Philadelphia, Pennsylvania crew a place alongside artists like G. Love & Special Sauce in providing the City of Brotherly Love with a... Read more

Seth Rogen Smashes The Roots’ “Mellow My Man” In An Epic Lip Sync Battle (Video)

Among the many stunts Jimmy Fallon stages with his guests, some of the best are his lip sync battles. Over the years, he's waged war with Tom Cruise, Will Ferrell, Ellen DeGeneres and Kevin Hart, to name a few. His latest matchup was against fellow funnyman Seth Rogen and, as... Read more

The Roots Quench Fans’ Thirst For New Music With A Release That’s Bittersweet (Audio)

It's been more than two years since The Roots released a new album. Though they blessed fans with "Champion" for the NBA Finals, fans are still thirsty for new music from Hip-Hop's premier band. Today (8/3), Black Thought, Questlove, Captain Kirk, Tuba Gooding, Kamal, and the rest of the gang... Read more

Tish Hyman Has Co-Signs From The Roots, Kanye & More For Good Reason. She Tells Her Story

Over the last 18 months, Tish Hyman has emerged as one of the most promising voices in years. The talented singer, songwriter and MC has earned the respect of Alicia Keys, The Roots, Kanye West, Sean "Puff Daddy" Combs, Fabolous and more, not to mention countless new fans. She also... Read more

Sadat X Passes The Torch To A-F-R-O And He Holds It High (Video)

For more than 25 years, Sadat X has set a high standard in lyricism. In his acclaimed work with Brand Nubian, songs like "Slow Down" and "Punks Jump Up To Get Beat Down" not only packed stylish deliveries, they were rich in thematic substance. With an unmistakable voice, the Bronx,... Read more

Hear The Best Hip-Hop Of May 2016 In One Playlist (Audio)

As May helped us get ready for Summer, it brought the heat for Hip-Hop, too. De La Soul delivered on the promise of their new album And The Anonymous Nobody, with the scorcher, "Pain," and Redman announced a new group called 1000Volts, consisting of himself and DJ Jayceooh, releasing his... Read more

Black Thought’s Fresh Freestyle Serves The Good Food To Expect At The Roots Picnic NYC (Video)

This past Saturday (June 4), the ninth annual Roots Picnic took place in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Hosts The Roots played alongside Pop-R&B superstar Usher, while other feature performers included Future, DMX, Swizz Beatz, Anderson .Paak and The Free Nationals, DJ Jazzy Jeff, Kaytranada, Lil Dicky, Migos, Tish Hyman, Willow Smith, and... Read more

The Roots Are Chosen For The NBA Finals Theme Song & Do It Like Champions (Audio)

Earlier in the year, PRhyme, the duo of DJ Premier & Royce 5'9", were commissioned to create the theme song for ESPN's NBA Countdown. "Rockin' With The Best" was one minute of pure boom bap Hip-Hop, accompanied by a video featuring footage of the league's biggest and brightest stars intercut... Read more

Jamila Woods Releases A Song That Flips A J Dilla-Inspired Rarity By The Roots (Audio)

Though she has been on the scene for some time, having worked with Chance The Rapper, Donnie Trumpet and others, Jamila Woods came to the attention of many through a powerful feature performance on Macklemore & Ryan Lewis' "White Privilege 2," earlier this year. The singer, poet and writer seized... Read more

Black Thought Recites The Verse Of His Lifetime…Literally (Video)

Last week, The Roots' Black Thought appeared at Harvard's Innovation Lab. The South Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Grammy Award-winning, platinum-selling MC reportedly kicked a freestyle in the Cambridge, Massachusetts  lunchroom. Afterwards, during an audience with the Hip-Hop veteran, he was asked to reprise his verse. Instead, Thought chose to do a nearly... Read more

Black Thought Fronts A Funky Track That Uses Blues To Motivate (Audio)

The Roots' Black Thought does not do a ton of features, relatively speaking. However, in recent years, when the South Philadelphia, Pennsylvania MC puts his vocals on something beyond the circle, he does not seem to play politics. From Thurz ("Riot") to L.A. The Darkman ("Rap Poloticians"), Tariq supports what... 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

Black Thought, Del, Murs & Fashawn Make An All-Star Collabo About The Fight Within (Video)

One of 2016's most exciting collaborations crosses the coastline. The Roots' Black Thought, Hieroglyphics' Del The Funky Homosapien, Felt's Murs, and Fashawn all come together for "Rise Up." The song is for Street Fighter V, the game, but it is by no means a simple marketing ploy. Instead, this visual—which... Read more

Black Thought Reveals What Artists Used To Do To Get J Dilla’s Best Beats (Video)

Between 1999 and 2006, The Roots would work with J Dilla (f/k/a Jay Dee) a number of times. Then label-mates at MCA Records, Dilla produced elements of the Grammy-nominated platinum Things Fall Apart album. While "Dynamite!" would make the LP, "New Year's @ Jay Dee's" would be a hidden jewel... Read more

Black Thought Raps About the Super Bowl With Help From “Tonight Show” Fans (Video)

To Heads, it's no secret that the Roots are arguably the greatest band in Hip-Hop. When Jimmy Fallon brought the Philly crew with him to The Tonight Show, millions of new fans were born, and thanks to the many musical skits and interludes on the show, America gets to see... Read more

Black Thought & J.Period Are Performing A Live J Dilla Mixtape At Dilla Weekend (Audio)

As announced earlier this week, Black Thought and J.Period have been added to the 2016 J Dilla Weekend lineup. Taking place February 5-7, the Miami, Florida event will feature concert performances, panel discussions, a Discogs record swap meet, art exhibits, and much more. With the addition of The Roots' MC... Read more

Black Thought, Jay Electronica, & Bun B Added To 2016 J Dilla Weekend Lineup

There have been some major changes surrounding the 2016 J Dilla Weekend. The second annual event in Miami, Florida will take place February 5-7. The event, hosted by J Dilla's mother, Maureen "Ma Dukes" Yancey, features concert performances, art exhibits, panels, record swap meets, and more. The main venue for... Read more

Round 2 Of The Greatest Rap Albums Of The 2000s Is Coming But 1 Race Is Too Close To Call

In late 2015, Ambrosia For Heads returned to “Finding The GOAT,” our annual voting series that polls readers and fans to determine the Greatest Of All-Time. Following 2014-2015’s quest to use votes to determine the GOAT MC, we are asking readers to determine the greatest of all-time Hip-Hop album. “Finding... Read more

DJ Premier Tells The Story Of This Photo With D’Angelo, Alchemist & J. Dilla, In His Words

DJ Premier tells Ambrosia For Heads the story about the night he, D'Angelo, Alchemist and J. Dilla gathered in the studio and took what would become an iconic photo. These are his words about the photo, that night, and the other supremely talented men with whom he posed: "Gang Starr... Read more

Kanye West’s My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy vs. The Roots’ Phrenology. Which Is Better?

One year ago, Ambrosia For Heads launched a debate among its readers seeking to answer one of Hip-Hop’s most hotly-contested questions: who is the greatest MC of all time? “Finding The GOAT MC” lasted between September 2014 and May 2015, engaging millions of readers and ultimately producing its winner, as... Read more

Lupe Fiasco’s Food & Liquor vs. Common’s Like Water For Chocolate. Which Is Better?

One year ago, Ambrosia For Heads launched a debate among its readers seeking to answer one of Hip-Hop’s most hotly-contested questions: who is the greatest MC of all time? “Finding The GOAT MC” lasted between September 2014 and May 2015, engaging millions of readers and ultimately producing its winner, as... Read more

Black Thought Finally Rhymes Over A DJ Premier Beat & He Smashes It (Audio)

When DJ Premier, Royce Da 5'9", and Adrian Younge started mapping out the self-title album known as PRhyme, The Roots' Black Thought was a planned guest. However, the Grammy Award-winning band's longtime manager/producer Rich Nichols passed away in mid-2014, halting plans. In 2016, as PRhyme readies a deluxe edition release... Read more

Logic’s Star Shines Brightly with Help From the Roots on “The Tonight Show” (Video)

25-year-old Logic has had a whirlwind couple of years, shattering all preconceived notions about what a real MC looks like or where a real MC comes from. The Maryland native was born Sir Robert Bryson Hall II, and since signing to Def Jam and releasing not, but two immensely successful... Read more

Adele Sings Hello While Fallon & The Roots Play Classroom Instruments. Still Amazing! (Video)

Many of Adele's biggest hits are rooted in heartbreak, loss or regret. The same holds true for her latest smash, "Hello." Leave it to Jimmy Fallon, however, to make even a song about someone's inability to get over a past love funny. As he has done with others, including Robin... Read more

All 4 Members Of A Tribe Called Quest Perform On TV For The 1st Time In 15 Years (Video)

Yesterday (11/13), A Tribe Called Quest released the 25th anniversary deluxe edition of their debut album, People’s Instinctive Travels and the Paths of Rhythm. To celebrate, all 4 members reunited on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon to perform together on TV for the first time in over 15 years.... Read more

A Tribe Called Quest’s The Low End Theory vs. The Roots’ Things Fall Apart. Which Is Better?

One year ago, Ambrosia For Heads launched a debate among its readers seeking to answer one of Hip-Hop’s most hotly-contested questions: who is the greatest MC of all time? “Finding The GOAT MC” lasted between September 2014 and May 2015, engaging millions of readers and ultimately producing its winner, as... Read more

Doug E. Fresh, Rahzel & Nicole Paris’ Beatbox Cypher Is Supernaturally Dope. (Video)

Based upon its recognition in the mainstream, beatboxing may seem passé. While Rap groups like the Fat Boys and Get Fresh Crew kept the booming sound effects closely in tow, the emergence of the Hip-Hop producer and improved technology have challenged the gifted breath control and malleable mouths of yesteryear.... Read more

Black Thought Pumps Cypher Adrenaline In This Dazzling Display (Video)

Black Thought and The Roots rock the spot on television five nights a week. However, that doesn't mean that they can't shut things down in one fell swoop. Tariq and Ahmir hit the 2015 BET Hip Hop Awards with the kind of vocal precision that they made famous, when cyphers... Read more

Black Thought, Redman, Doug E. Fresh & More Lead the 2015 Hip Hop Awards Cyphers

Last night (October 9), the 2015 BET Hip Hop Awards were taped at Atlanta, Georgia's Boisfeuillet Jones Atlanta Civic Center. Hosted by "Uncle" Snoop Dogg, the annual affair honored Scarface with the "I Am Hip Hop Award," and handed out trophies to Rap and R&B's brightest and best. For TV... Read more

The Roots Perform “Act Too” With Common and Talib Kweli Adds a Freestyle (Video)

Last night, Central Park in New York City hosted the season-ending concert for the Big Apple's SummerStage program, an outdoor performing-arts festival that brings hundreds of free shows to residents each year. Now in its thirtieth season, SummerStage provided Heads with some major Hip-Hop heat including performances from Afrika Bambaataa,... Read more

Talib Kweli & Rapsody Debut a New Song Live…& The Revolution Is Televised (Video)

On last night's episode of "The Tonight Show," Talib Kweli and Rapsody visited Jimmy Fallon and performed a no frills rendition of "Every Ghetto," the latest single from Kweli's forthcoming Indie 500, a name first introduced to Heads last year when it was announced that Pharoahe Monch, 9th Wonder, and... Read more

Jimmy Fallon Faces Off Against Terrence Howard. There’s Only 1 King on “Jimpire” (Video)

Over the last 6 months, Fox's show Empire has become a runaway hit. The series, which stars Terrence Howard and Taraji P. Henson, has transcended race and gender to become as embedded in the cultural zeitgeist as any show in years. Its over-the-top plot twists and outsized characters are only... Read more