Friday, June 5, 2009
Maybe Nas Was Right
Until a couple of nights ago, I had never actually seen Late Night with Jimmy Fallon with my own two baby browns. I had only heard that my band aka The Roots were providing tha music, and I thought it could be a tragic disaster... or possibly tha coolest thing to ever happen to white insomniacs all over tha country. I wasn't all tha way with it, but admittedly I wasn't 100% opposed, acknowledging that them bruthas are gettin old, touring ain't necessarily tha life, and yet, bills are constant and demand payment.
Fast forward to Monday night. I watched in horror as The Roots did a bit called "Slow Jam the News", where Black Thought (who, I say is one of tha illest, most underrated emcees EVER! Step up and debate me on this! I will Batman your ass!) sang about California's budget crisis (ugh!) while Jimmy Fallon interjected in a supposedly sultry tone with innuendo laden "humor"... none of which was funny. And all night, he kept referring to Questlove and Black Thought as "Amir" and "Tariq". I know those are their actual names, and maybe I'm just being sensitive because of my deep and abiding love for The Roots, but it felt a little disrespectful. When Jimmy Fallon or any of tha guests would refer to The Roots, it always felt slightly patronizing. Of course, I can't really give a lot of details about tha episode I watched nor am I really qualified to critique it, since at about 10 minutes into tha show I started booing loudly, throwing anything within arm's reach at tha TV, and frantically tweeting and texting about how much I hated whut I was seeing.
I know, I know. You don't have to tell me. As long as those of us who love Hip Hop are still alive, Hip Hop lives...yeah. I got that. However, you must understand... tha past few years have been a little too much for my fragile (though enduring) spirit to take. First, Lil Wayne proclaims himself to be "The Greatest Rapper Alive" (when plenty of other rappers that are clearly better than him ain't laid down in their graves yet) and, to my shock and great dismay, people who are not hearing impaired agree. Then, whut I personally consider to be the greatest collective sonic force in tha Hip Hop genre, The Roots, end up as a corny house band on a bland ass late night talk show. Maybe it's a bit of a stretch to say that Hip Hop is dead, but if it isn't yet, surely it's on it's way.