Questlove Talks Roots Album, Says D'Angelo Is In 'Home-Stretch' of New Record

Roots Picnic / June 5, 2010 / Philadelphia (Festival Pier at Penn's Landing)
Jeff Fusco/Getty Images

?uestlove of the Roots performs at the 3rd Annual Roots Picnic at the Festival Pier on June 5, 2010 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

?uestlove, of The Roots, wears many hats. Whether he's on drums with the Legendary Roots Crew, on set as house band for "Late Night With Jimmy Fallon," doing random DJ sets, or sitting in with other bands, the man stays busy. We spoke with ?uestlove about The Roots' upcoming 13th album "Undun" (Dec. 6), and the progress of D'Angelo's record.

D'Angelo Back At Work on Long-Waited New Album

"We actually completed [the album] at five [o'clock] this morning, so it's officially done," ?uestlove tells's The Juice of "Undun." "It's essentially a biographical narrative about Redford Stephens. Stephens [is] a composite of four or five people that we've known over the past few years from Philadelphia." The album, which features Big K.R.I.T. and Phonte from Little Brother, tells Steven's story backwards from his death to his birth.

When asked about The Roots' incredible schedule, he took it all as just another day on the job. "It's really not that hard. People are always amazed with the amount of projects and events that we're involved in and the hardest thing about it is just staying the course and concentrating," ?uestlove said. "I've just seen so many examples of people who take it for granted. You dream of being in a certain position and once you approach it you manage to sabotage it or you get off course. For us, that's really not an option."

While Questo spoke of the many jobs he has, he revealed some work on a more elusive artist's highly-anticipated album: D'Angelo. "I'm on his [D'Angelo's] record as well," he said. "He's in the home stretch right now. I know that Fred Wesley and the JB Horns just did a cut that Q-Tip did; I know he's doing his vocals right now."

Despite the hectic schedule, ?uestlove brings it into perspective with hard work. "We're really highly responsible and very disciplined," he said. "I take pride in the fact that this is our 13th record; not many hip-hop groups can even get to their 8th record."


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