Questlove on Allen Toussaint: 'He Wrote Some of Your Favorite Music and You Just Didn't Know It'

Broadway Hamilton 2015 Questlove
Eric Ogden

Questlove photographed on July 20, 2015 at the Richard Rodgers Theater in New York City.

Soul and R&B legend Allen Toussaint died at age 77 following a concert in Madrid yesterday. Tributes from fellow musicians have already begun pouring in, remembering Toussaint's vast influence and extraordinary musicality.

Allen Toussaint, Legendary New Orleans Producer, Songwriter & Performer, Dies at 77

Fellow New Orleans musician Trombone Shorty (who frequently collaborated with Toussaint) tells Billboard in a statement, "New Orleans and the world has lost a true musical genius.  Allen was a tremendous friend and mentor to me and other musicians in New Orleans.  Everything I do is influenced by my musical upbringing in New Orleans -- and Allen was a huge part of that."

Questlove remembered the New Orleans legend in an Instagram essay that spanned his Lee Dorsey years to Amerie's "1 Thing" (yes, that's a Toussaint-produced sample). "I can go on and on. Because his work goes on and on," the drummer/DJ said, concluding, "His work will now speak for itself." Read the full post below:


Man this hit home. Of all the cats that I never had a 1 on 1 convo w/ to pick their brain about their music experiences: this is numero uno. I don't want y'all thinkin' "this is just some old legend that passed away" naw. This dude wrote some of your favorite music & you just didn't know it. He effected SO many genres. That's how you know how potent and effective your art is: when you quietly change the scene w/o proper acknowledgement. If someone had the right to have KWest brag swag it was this man. But his humble quiet disposition wouldn't allow such a thing. His work will now speak for itself. Just take time to peep his work w #LeeDorsey (#GetOutMyLifeWoman #RideYourPony) some of the greatest clever pop tunes crafted. Hip hop heads still salivate over all #TheMeters tunes he produced & shot new energy into the culture once sampling #JamesBrown was becoming stale (#CissyStrut #LookKaPyPy #JustKissedMyBaby #OhCalcutta) then came a slew of artists in the 70s & 80s that took his work & breathed new life into his songs: #YesWeCanCan #LadyMarmalade #WorkingInACoalmine) ---name em! His work was so powerful everyone from #PaulMccartney to #DrJohn to #EricClapton to #TheRollingStones to even #JayZ ("....dear god I wonder can you save me?"....that piano loop? #Toussaint all day) #Amerie's most banging joint? (A Toussaint production sample) at least 12 "Get Out My Life Woman" snares were like starch in hip hop's daily nutritional chart--meaning so there you barely notice it.---I can go on and on. Because his work goes on and on. You'll read better op-eds by professional journalists. Kinda hard to cram all of this hiding from trainer in the gym on iPhone. But i felt the need to write something. When I tag #LegacyGoals I mean it. Humble cat whose work spoke louder than he did. That's what we all need to learn from. Rest In Beats to the powerful #AllenToussaint

A photo posted by Questlove Gomez (@questlove) on

Read more artist tributes below:




RIP Mr. Allen Toussaint.. A New Orleans GIANT!! Put my city on the map.. Thank you. #Nola ?

A photo posted by PJ Morton (@pjmorton) on

Allen Toussaint has died... rest in peace, good friend... #legend

Posted by Harry Connick, Jr. on Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Music lovers around the world today are mourning the passing of the legendary Allen Toussaint. One of the architects of...

Posted by John Oates on Tuesday, November 10, 2015