Tag Archives: Roots

Dave Chappelle and detournement

Jimmy Fallon interviews Chappelle and he let’s loose a number of wonderful funny gems.  Salute to Fallon, The Roots Prince and Dave Chappelle.  A few key moments worth observing:

2:00 “the lost Root” and racial stereotyping.

2: 30 Chappelle’s explanation of the Roots and all their musical buddies in “shelves” at Electric Ladyland is beautiful.

3:10 Prince and detournement (to turn around against itself).  “That is a Prince Judo move right there.” “That’s checkmate right there!”  To use the humorous image of Dave Chappelle as Prince to sell records — situationist genius.  Here is the cover from Prince’s actual song: breakfast can wait.”  Thanks to Okayplayer

Thanks to Okayplayer for the image

I actually went and bought the song.  You can go to 3rdeyegirl and spend eighty-eight cents to buy a snare and slap-bass Prince tune about . . . well helium-inclusive erotic love.  Perhaps another level of detournement is making a great song about a decade-old Chappelle skit.

4:30 Jay-Z, the Black Album and Kanye’s confident rewind. I also love Chappelle’s imitation of Common’s face when he hears the Common-referential lyric.

5:40 Kanye and the punchline: “my life is dope and I do dope shit!” while getting a sneak peak at not-yet-released Chappelle Show skits. 110%.

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Performing arguments: The Roots . . . And then you shoot your cousin

Okayplayer has a slightly obtuse review of the live performance of The Roots new album.  The album is called . . . And then you shoot your cousin.  Here is a snippet from the review by Eddie “Stats” which highlights the use of performance to make some interesting arguments:

Questlove is at the decks now and as the lights strobe a massive avalanche of balloon animals suddenly falls on the stage, a Jeff Koons flood of meaningless forms, falling in the framedrop slo-mo created by the flash of the strobe. A doo-ragged character enters the stage, humming, holding a gigantic red balloon like a kite. There’s something clownish in his dancerly movements, he has his mouth absurdly open, recalling at once a mime, Flavor Flav in wop-mode, the broom-wielding enforcer of the Apollo as he sweeps balloons away in the wake of his feet. In silence his dance picks up in intensity and his movements resemble Flav less than legendary b-boy choreographer Pee Wee Danz. As he steps and swims through balloons, the pop of dying inflatables echo like gunshots. We are fully in Fluxus territory now, improvisation colliding with a wickeder kind of randomness to create an ‘anything could happen’ tension in the room.

via The Roots chop up their new LP into art live (photos + recap) Okayplayer.

The Roots performing live among some balloon animals.  Photo by Mel D. Cole taken with respect from Okayplayer.

The Roots performing live among some balloon animals. Photo by Mel D. Cole taken with respect from Okayplayer.

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Filed under art, communication, dance, hip hop, music, race, representation, resistance