The Roots are back at the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, and this time, they’re prepared for whatever childhood hero might show up in their trailer. We caught up with Questlove to talk parade attire, getting star-struck, and home cooking.
On dressing the part
“This time I will be uber- prepared with a lot of thermal gear and with things that will keep me warm. Because playing drums in the cold for three hours straight is not a task that I prepared for before, so I kind of learned the hard way last year,” admits Questlove.
An early Christmas present
Last year, the Roots shared a trailer with the Ronald McDonald. “I just thought it was just a generic Ronald McDonald until he informed me that he is the only person [who] has ever played Ronald McDonald. That was one of the most hilarious, funniest moments of our lives, because we were no longer in our late 30s and early 40s. Like, all of us instantly turned into 12-year-olds.”
This year’s setlist
“We’re going to do our version of ‘Do They Know It’s Christmas’ from Band Aid. Stevie Wonder is what Christmas means to me, so we’re kind of entertaining the thought of doing it sort of Temptation-style with choreography and that type of thing.”
What’s for dinner?
After the parade wraps and they shoot “Late Night with Jimmy Fallon,” the guys are heading to Tariq Trotter’s (aka Black Thought) house in New Jersey for Thanksgiving dinner: “Not many know but he’s probably the best culinary experience I’ve known. If he were to ever retire from being an MC, a rapper, he has another life as a chef.”
A Philly memory
“In ’84 I snuck off with my cousins to go see Prince Thanksgiving night at the Philadelphia Spectrum. And I almost got away with it, and then Sunday I guess someone in church had wanted to make sure, you know, ‘Did you have fun? Did you get home OK?’ And my mom sort of overheard it.”