So, considering that my mans 'n 'em VNL and I had more than a few minutes to kill at the recent Mos Def/9:30 show; we chatted it up on a range of topics. One of which, I was really surprised to learn of having been a big fan of Conan O'Brien's over the years, and his late night show.
I'm eager to see how Jimmy Fallon will do, taking over the reigns for the late night slot (...I think he's a great fit), yet had NO idea that the nightly house band will be none other than The Legendary Roots Crew?!!!??!
This AP piece seems to do the story justice, and goes into great detail, so I direct any interested readers that way (and...maybe I'm just typing to myself here anyway, haha!?!); but, I'm super excited about this.
While it, at times, likens the newly acquired role for "Philly's Finest" as a form of 'selling-out,' a la Paul Shaffer and Kevin Eubanks (or even equivocates it to Miles Davis resorting to playing on a "subway platform"), and speaks of warnings of negative experience from Branford Marsalis to ?uestlove; I think it will be a good thing and is a very smart move for The Roots to stay in the spotlight and greatly increase their, already universal, fanbase.
Before 1993, I had no idea who Max Weinberg was, even as an aspiring percussionist. I knew vaguely of "The Boss" (...and no, not Officer Ricky), Bruce Springsteen. And, aside from the black dude who played the sax in the E Street Band (Clarence Clemons), I couldn't tell you any of his other band members (until The Sopranos, of course).
Late Night with Conan O'Brien absolutely brought the likes of Max, The Weinberg 7, and trombonist Richie "LaBamba" Rosenberg into our homes and hearts, so much so that the crew was instantly recognizable to myself and millions of others during their recent Super Bowl half-time performance.
So, this move for The Roots should introduce them to a whole new group of fans. After all, if you like ANY kind of music, and can appreciate/carry a tune, you're bound to LOVE them. And who knows...maybe in a few years, once all of the Janet Jackson titty-malfunction, and Prince's guitar-fallic-symbol shadow controversies have blown over; the billions of viewers for the 2014 Super Bowl can be treated to an amazing Roots Crew half time set!?
I, for one, definitely WANT MORE!!!!!!!!