How do ask your favorite multi-Grammy winning band who has been in the music game for over 20 years if they would like to perform at your wedding?
Simple- just ask right?
The worst-case scenario is they say no. Or, maybe this letter will gain some steam on the World Wide Web and I become the brunt of jokes among various message boards, blogs, and tweets. But maybe… just maybe… even if it’s a miniscule of chance like seeing a DJ being a part of a Roots set (though I saw one at the VHI Hip Hop Honors tour)- they say yes!
Why would The Roots want to say yes? Maybe I can give a few reasons of persuasion…
1. First let me explain my fan credentials…
I have not just jumped on The Roots bandwagon. I know you had jobs before the Late Night with Jimmy Fallon show. I know “You Got Me” is not your first single. And I never confused you guys with the “Nappy Roots.” (ha)
My first Roots show was when I was in college back in 2000 at Hammerstein Ballroom with Macy Gray and Gang Starr. To say I was not impressed would be a severe understatement. Since then I have been to just about every NY/NJ show (My ticket stubs say I’m near 40 shows now), including the legendary (no pun intended) and perhaps never to be repeated again- Block Party. I have even been as far as the L.A House of Blues (I'm a Long Island native but now a Brooklyn resident) and my most recent show was at Studio Square in Astoria, NY.
That Studio Square show was special, because it was the first time my fiancée (my girlfriend at the time) saw The Roots live- and she loved it! It was always a tricky conundrum to bring your love interest to a show. What if she doesn’t like the music you love? Although I already thought she was, her positive response to the music solidified her as the one, lol.
2. Who is not fascinated by coincidences?...
“Somebody told me that this planet was small, we use to live in the same building on the same floor and never met before”- (You Got Me- The Roots)
The irony of all of this is that for the past 14 years since I’ve been listening to the many live, bootleg or studio variations of “You Got Me” (club, reggae, acoustic, 20 min. versions, some interwoven with Outkast, Bobby Brown, Mannish Boy, Donna
Summer, Gun’s n Roses) I never expected that I would actually live out the first few bars in real life. True story- my fiancée and I live in the same apartment building, same floor and same side with only one apartment separating us for 9 months until we met each other through a mutual friend. (Yes-I have proof, lol)
3. Is this request that silly?...
Even celebrities are fan of other celebrities. Questlove has a hilarious webpage about celebrity encounters. Quest, if you had a chance to ask the purple one- Prince, to perform at your wedding, wouldn’t you have to at least try to go for it? I’m sure Black Thought would love to hear Kool G Rap do “Men at Work” for his. Okay, maybe…
Or maybe by some small chance, even though you have accomplished a lot in your careers, and played with just about every major artist (you have a long list now- and Bruce Springsteen was huge!), the one item left on your to do list is play at a wedding???
Let me reassure you, I am not Eminem’s “Stan.” I do not have “The Roots” tattooed across my chest. And if you say no, I will not drink a fifth of Vodka and drive down the Long Island Expressway. I do have a baldie, so maybe I am guilty of imitating James Poyser. But I do not walk around with a afro fist pick, I do not sport a beard like Black Thought or Kamal Gray, I have taken guitar lessons, but I’m light years from doing those crazy solo’s Kirk Douglass does. My bad knee prevents me from carrying a sousaphone into a crowd and hopping back on stage like Damon Bryson, and I don’t have the cool factors of Knuckles or Mark Kelly.
I will be the happiest man on my wedding day because I am humbled to meet one of the sweetest kindest girls I know. I feel very fortunate to get married to such a wonderful person!
But if I could somehow add the cherry on top- and have the sonically crisp, transitionally fluid, soulfully rich, with a dose of partying like a rock star with electric strings, heavy bass, and rhythmic percussion and drums of The Roots with Black Thought’s edge, sharp lyric precision and soulful voice- I could not ask for a better combination for a perfect wedding day. Just speechless…
So Roots crew- would you perform at my wedding? Well, I had to ask!
P.S. Even if you don’t feel like packing your equipment, you could just perform with elementary school instruments like you did with Carly Rae Jespen or with office supplies for Christina Aguilera and it will still sound better than band I can hire, lol.
Shoutouts to the band...
Thanks for the four drumsticks I caught over the years Quest and Knuckles, (although I always wanted to catch the drum pad), thanks for the autographs (Starland Ballroom- NJ and Roseland Ballroom). And lastly, thanks for the memories of the converted Roots fans I have made over the years at shows and the concerts that provided an escapism from the daily grind. Thanks for being the best band alive!
You guys have cemented your legacy as being Legendary!