Monday, March 9, 2009

The Roots are the House Band for Late Night with Jimmy Fallon?!?! (SICK)

You read that right!  The Roots are now the house band on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon! I can't believe I forgot to write a post about this back when I heard about this in November.  I was skeptical about the new version of Late Night because I don't really think Jimmy Fallon is very funny but it's starting to look and sound like it has some potential.  The fact that I can see The Roots perform (even for just a few minutes) every night definitely intrigues me.  I might need to check this show out soon if I can actually stay awake that late. 

This is one of the more interesting things to happen in Hip Hop in the past 6 months to a year, in my opinion.  I think this is huge because it gives you an idea of where the music industry is headed or at least let's us know that artists are worried about their future revenues and record sales.  Artists need to get creative if they are going to have any longevity in this game and this is a perfect example.  The fact that The Roots, who are one of the best live acts in Hip Hip and make a ton of money touring, are willing to forgo all of the potential revenue on the road for a consistent "corporate" gig should give you an idea of how bad it's getting for even established artists in the music industry.

They would rather see consistent money then be on the road all year long and I really can't blame them.  That's gotta be a tough way to make a living regardless of how glamorous it seems.  Record sales are WAY down and it's getting harder and harder to get any kind of marketing budget from the record labels to push your next project.  By playing on Late Night, The Roots get a chance to be seen by millions of people each night and can reach an even bigger potential audience than just touring all year long.  Plus they get to stay at home (or at least in NY) for months at a time as compared to being at home just weeks every couple of months when on the road.  It's crazy how well this could work out for them both in their revenue and quality of life.  

I bet they will see a jump in their record sales of past albums at least in the short term and could even see an increase over the long term if they stay on the show.  Even though they are one of the better known (aka ONLY) "bands" in Hip Hop, they are still considered underground and they could use every bit of marketing that they can get.  Plus I heard that syndication money is ridiculous!!!  If the show goes that long, they could see some serious paper in the future without doing any work at all.  You can't beat that!

Here are a few articles and posts that I found about how the idea came about and how it's going with the new gig.  It sounds like they are busting their asses writing new material constantly and having to work all week but they seem to like it so far:

Jimmy Fallon's House Band The Roots
The Roots On Late Night With Jimmy Fallon: Spot Inspection 
The Roots on becoming Jimmy Fallon's house band: 'This enabled us to survive'
News: The Roots Discuss "Jimmy Fallon" House Band Gig, "It's Going To Be A Major Challenge"

Above is a video of a recent Ludacris performance on the show.  Luda was nasty as always and Black Thought did a great job of being hype man while The Roots crushed it on the beats.  Below are a few funny clips from the show as well.  The first is shit quality but it's another look at The Roots getting down while Cameron Diaz and Jimmy Fallon do a dance off.  This was actually way funnier than I expected.
This is a clip of Jimmy Fallon playing Serena Williams in a game of Beer Pong.  Classic!  Serena would F#%K up anyone on set too.  She is looking DIESEL these days.  Jesus.

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