AOL: Who can you credit with some of your early introductions to these inspirational artists?
Questlove: Strictly hip hop. You know, some of these records were definitely staples in my household. You know, Marvin Gaye's 'Wholy Holy,' Donnie Hathaway's 'Little Ghetto Boy;' compared to what was done to what was done with various artists, from Della Reese to Roberta Flack, to Eddy Harris, Les McCann. And then some of these records like our generation, from Earnie Hines, and 'Hard Times' by Baby Huey and the Babysitters, I knew because of -- well 'Hard Times' has been sampled so many times. I guess A Tribe Called Quest was the first to use it in the 'Can I Kick It' remix. And probably the best usage of it was Ghostface Killah in the Supreme Clientele record with Buck Fifty.
And pretty much Pete Rock and CL Smooth used 'Our Generation' by Earnie Hines in their 'Straighten it Out,' of which CL Smooth is also on the record doing a verse. Some of the songs I knew from -- he's a good friend of mine -- I guess I credit him with helping The Roots get a record deal. His name is Gilles Peterson. He's a DJ in London on Radio 1. He's basically I guess the new John Keal, the tastemakers, tastemaker. You know, the guy that still believes in digging for old great records and then playing them on the air, and then all the tastemakers find out what he played and then they claim it as their own. Like oh look at this guy I discovered. So, when he played me Hang on in There, like the last time I was in London, I thought it was just a Marvin Gaye outtake.
And he gave me the record, and that's -- I've always just loved that record for so long. I had it for ten years and played it for people. I think one of the great things about that song, is that's one of the rare songs in which you'll actually a hear an African American, discuss sort of the taboo subject of you know, I guess, what his version of being patriotic means. 'Cause it's not too often do you find African American's talking about patriotism, or being proud of their country. Especially with the experience that we've had with America. So that's always been on the shelf, and the music was awesome as well, so, yeah I guess you could say it's sort of a three way tie of my father, and hip hop history, and great tastemakers.