Black Thought, founder and lead rapper of the legendary Hip Hop band The Roots, is trending on Twitter, and true Hip Hop fans have taken time to school anyone who is unaware of his place in the culture. A Hip hop blogger tweeted: “Black Thought isn’t a top 100 rapper of all time”.
Black Twitter went wild, causing the Philadelphia-bred lyricist’s name to rapidly trend. Many fans of the emcee took to the social platform to show their love and respect for the artist by posting videos of him rapping, posting the band’s discography and even creating appreciation posts categorizing his artistry with others at his esteemed level of skill.
After being compared to new-age rappers, many fans retweeted the now infamous Hot 97 freestyle where the emcee showcased his undeniable skill over Mobb Deep’s classic “The Learning (Burn)” in 2017. With over nine minutes of continuous lyrical ingenuity and wordplay, Black Thought delivered bars.
He continued, using more than 2,000 words, garnishing the video over a million views on YouTube in less than 24 hours. His improvised, in-the-moment flow was unrehearsed, yet masterfully skilled as he told of his band’s 1999 album Things Fall Apart foreshadowing of the upcoming political climate, his poverty stricken upbringing, his rise from unfortunate circumstances and other things. When asked about the topics in his freestyle, the artist told Rolling Stone, “I’ve learned to give the listener, the audience, and my fans those glimpses into the inner workings of me, into what makes the machine that is Tariq Trotter. … The same way that any speechwriter – or Dave Chappelle, Chris Rock or Jerry Seinfeld – will incorporate elements of their everyday life so that they resonate with their audience, that’s what I do.”
Co-founded in 1987 by drummer Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson, The Roots has stamped its place in Black culture and band members continue to prove why they will forever remain a part of Hip Hop royalty.