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Questlove says the Roots were first discovered playing a strip club

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May 9, 2022 | 1:50pm

Their roots were in a Philly jiggle joint.

Questlove says in a new interview that his acclaimed band the Roots were first discovered at a Philadelphia strip club.

The recent Oscar-winner and drummer of “The Tonight Show” house band recalls on the newly launched podcast “Til This Day with Radio Rahim” that before the Roots’ first album debuted in the early ’90s — their routes to local success were either the “Ivy league route, playing college frat parties,” or to play “a talent night for rap groups at this strip club called the Princess Lounge at north Philly.” (Pronounced, according to Questlove, “N-O-R-F.”)

But when Questlove’s eclectic act showed up at the strip club: “We walk into the Princess Lounge and I’m hella esoteric. I’m wearing Birkenstocks,” he said on Rahim’s Luminary podcast. “And they’re just looking at us like, ‘You’re wearing Birkenstocks in north Philadelphia?’ ”

Questlove
Questlove recently won an Oscar for his documentary directing debut.
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Luckily the band’s playing quickly shattered the crowd’s initial reaction to their hippie-hop look a la P.M. Dawn or Arrested Development. “We set up and we play our first song and the whole club’s like, ‘Yo,’ ” said Questlove.

They kicked off by recreating a Tribe Called Quest tune and “the novelty” of it was a knockout.

In the crowd, “one of the guys happened to be a local college radio DJ legend, named AJ Shine,” who told the band, “Yo, I want to record you all. Let’s do a 12-inch single,” Questlove says.

Ultimately, “That 12-inch single winds up being an EP, which then winds up being [a] 16-song record, which then winds up being kind of our demo. And within a year’s time we finally get a record deal.”

The Roots on
The band in a classier climate than their strip club talent night gig years ago.
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They released their first album, “Organix,” in 1993 after first forming in the ’80s when cofounders Questlove (a .k. a Ahmir Thompson) and Tariq “Black Thought” Trotter were students at the Philadelphia High School for the Creative and Performing Arts.

The original name of the band was Square Roots. They went on to win three Grammys.

They later joined Jimmy Fallon in 2009 on his NBC “Late Night” show before moving with him to “The Tonight Show” in 2014 as the show’s band.

Guests on Rahim’s new podcast also include Jon Stewart, Rosie Perez and “SNL” comic Michael Che. Rahim is also a close pal of comedian Dave Chappelle, who has his own Luminary podcast, “The Midnight Miracle” with Black Star rappers Talib Kweli and Yasiin Bey (formerly known as Mos Def).

Questlove was on stage at the 2022 Oscars immediately after Will Smith bizarrely slapped Chris Rock at the awards. The Roots drummer’s directorial debut, “Summer of Soul (…Or, When the Revolution Could Not Be Televised),” won Best Documentary Feature.

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Gossip Girl’s Jessica Szohr Engaged to Brad Richardson: See Her Ring

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Just over a year after Gossip Girl actress Jessica Szohr and partner Brad Richardson welcomed their first baby together, the couple has updated their relationship status to engaged.

Jessica Szohr Loves Taylor Swift’s Scent

Attention, Upper East Siders: E! News here with some big news: Jessica Szohr is engaged.

That’s right! The Gossip Girl alum, who portrayed Vanessa Abrams on the hit CW series, is set to tie the knot with her boyfriend Brad Richardson, she confirmed on Instagram May 16. Alongside a black-and-white selfie of the couple—and her gorgeous diamond ring—Jessica wrote, “I said yes!”

After sharing the news, the couple was flooded with well-wishes from fans and friends, including her former co-star Chace Crawford, who wrote, “Love you guys.”

Actress Eiza González sent her congratulations to the duo, as did The Vampire Diaries star Claire Holt. Jessica’s pal Nina Dobrev commented a series of heart emojis.

This relationship news comes just over a year after the actress, who most recently starred in The Orville, and her ice hockey player beau welcomed their first child together, a daughter named Bowie Ella Richardson. They started dating in 2018.

“Added a little special sweetness to our family and some new directions to our journey on 1-11-21,” Jessica captioned a photo of her newborn’s hands in January 2021. “This journey with Brad and [his daughter] Lexi has been one of the most beautiful experiences of my life.”

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“To then create a human that is absolutely perfect in our eyes and put a feeling in my heart I didn’t know existed is beyond words,” she continued. “I have all the feels and she is really something special.”

A year before welcoming Bowie, Jessica paid tribute to her man on social media.

“I am thankful for you today and everyday!” she wrote on Instagram in January 2020. “I know I tell you that from time to time and it doesn’t mean I have to post it & share it… but today I wanted anyone who follows me or is interested in my life to know that this man is a special human with a huge heart:) & I am lucky to have crossed paths with him!”

For the latest breaking news updates, click here to download the E! News App

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Why David Harbour Says Stranger Things Season 4 Is “Horrific Psychologically”

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Netflix’s Stranger Things Cast Talks HORRIFIC New Season

Hawkins, Indiana, has never been an ideal home for the faint of heart, but now it’s worse than ever.

Stranger Things fans have watched the town get terrorized by Demogorgons and mind flayers three seasons in a row, but according to David Harbour—who plays Hawkins’ chief of police Jim Hopper—things really hit the fan in the highly-anticipated fourth season.

“It’s quite horrific psychologically,” Harbour exclusively told E! News’ Daily Pop at the Netflix premiere on May 14. “It takes a toll on a lot of people.”

This time around, he said, “there’s a new brain to the monster, [and] it’s gonna destroy people in all kinds of new ways.”

Surely his adopted daughter, Eleven (Millie Bobby Brown), and her beloved group of friends—Will Byers (Noah Schnapp), Mike Wheeler (Finn Wolfhard), Dustin Henderson (Gaten Matarazzo), Lucas Sinclair (Caleb McLaughlin) and Max Mayfield (Sadie Sink)—won’t actually be destroyed, right? It’s hard to say. After all, said Harbour, “there’s a logic to who survives Hawkins.”

Hopper’s fate is hanging in the balance, too, and if he wants to survive, he “needs to be a stronger warrior to fight this thing,” Harbour added. 

It’s going to get messy, though. At the Stranger Things premiere, Wolfhard warned those who “don’t like blood and body stuff” not to watch the new season. “Or,” he added,” do watch it, and then skip those parts.”

Theo Wargo/Getty Images

McLaughlin also teased several internal conflicts to come. “There’s four different locations this season, so there’s definitely a lot of separation and different obstacles that we’re facing, even within ourselves,” he told E! News. “Not just the Upside Down, but personal issues as well.”

Brown echoed this sentiment, explaining that season four is specifically “true to what young girls and women have to deal with on a daily basis, if that’s at school, if that’s trying to fit in.”

She added, “I think it’s actually a nice tribute.”

Hear more from the Stranger Things cast—including Harbour and Matarazzo freaking out over each other’s outfits—in the above Daily Pop clip.

Stranger Things season four, volume one, premieres May 27 on Netflix. Volume two drops July 1.

Watch Daily Pop weekdays at 11 a.m., only on E!.

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Rosalía Stars in the First Ever Bilingual Campaign for SKIMS

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Ecomm, Skims RosaliaDonna Trope

We independently selected these products because we love them, and we hope you do too at these prices. Shop with E! has affiliate relationships, so we may get a commission if you purchase something through our links. Prices are accurate as of publish time. Items are sold by the retailer, not E!. 

The latest SKIMS campaign just launched and it’s a first of its kind. The brand, founded by Kim Kardashian, announced they were running their first ever bilingual campaign where content will be distributed in both English and Spanish. Not only that, global sensation and Grammy-award winning singer-songwriter, Rosalía, is the face of the brand new campaign.

“Rosalía’s willingness to push the boundaries and experiment with her music and personal style has been a huge inspiration for me. This campaign is all about the energy and confidence that she brings to the world,” Kim said in a press release. “I’m especially excited that she’s wearing pieces from our best-selling Cotton Collection – they’re classic, cool and breathable everyday essentials that everyone feels good in.”

This is the very first fashion campaign for the Spanish singer, whose album Motomami released in March of this year and is already platinum. 

“I love SKIMS,” Rosalía said. “They are so comfy and make me feel very sexy at the same time. I’m so excited that I finally got the chance to collaborate, especially in their Cotton Collection which is my fave.”

Donna Trope

You can check out Rosalía’s SKIMS campaign starting today. We’ve rounded up a few items in the fan fave Cotton Collection. Check those out below. 

Skims Cotton Plunge Bralette

Skims’ Cotton Plunge Bralette was designed to be a “wear-it and forget-it” type of bra that you can wear comfortably all day long. There’s a good variety of colors to choose from including core colors such as bone and soot, as well as seasonal options like raspberry, sedona and camel. 

Skims Cotton Jersey Triangle Bralette

The Cotton Jersey Triangle Bralette was made to be the perfect everyday bra. It’s lightweight, features a comfortable hold and is lined with soft cotton jersey for ultimate comfort. 

Skims Cotton Jersey Scoop Bralette

The Skims Cotton Jersey Scoop Bralette was designed to be the “one bra you’ll never want to take off.” It features “ultra soft” and lightweight jersey fabric, which will keep you comfy while you’re lounging around the house. The front scoop neckline also process subtle coverage. 

Skims Cotton Jersey Dipped Thong

Skim’s Cotton Jersey Dipped Thong is described as “amazing” and “the most comfortable thing ever in life” by Skims reviewers. The thongs are super soft, stretchy and come in multiple colors. Try one sand you’ll be immediately obsessed.

Skims Cotton Rub Mid Rise Brief

If you’re looking for something with more coverage, consider the Skims Cotton Rib Mid Rise Brief. They’re made of soft and breathable ribbed cotton fabric and offer cheeky back coverage. 

Skims Cotton Rib Long Tank

This classic rib tank features an extra long length for the “perfect tuck.” It’s highly versatile, comes in five must-have colors and can be worn year round. Skims reviewers love how flattering these tanks are. 

Skims Cotton Rib Boxer

Skims fans are obsessed with the Cotton Rib Boxers which were made to be “like his boxers, only cooler.” According to one shopper, these are so comfortable, they practically in live in them. 

Skims Cotton Rib Tank

Skims’ Cotton Rib Tank is one of their best-sellers. Like the rest of the must-have styles here, this is made with super soft, breathable fabric that flatters the shape of your body. It comes in six colors. 

Looking for more great things to shop today? Check out the Vince Camuto’s Friends and Family Sale where prices start at just $7.

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