Comedy writer and Chappelle’s Show co-creator Neal Brennan initially suggested the Roots to Fallon, but the comedian was skeptical. Even Questlove admitted that at that point in their careers, the Roots had achieved self-sufficiency and were wary about going in a new direction.
The group entertained Fallon at a Roots gig at UCLA. “I was backstage doing an interview and then when I walked out my dressing room, you [Fallon] had somehow managed to convince those guys over there to get in an Eight is Enough human pyramid,” Questlove said. “Everything that Tariq [“Black Thought” Trotter] wears is like $9,000, so the fact that Tariq was on the bottom row of this human pyramid on UCLA grass… I said to my manager, ‘We’re not getting rid of this guy are we?'”
Questlove spoke about his new book Something to Food About — which features interviews with chefs about their creative process — while the clip opens with Fallon forcing the drummer to relive the moment he did an inadvertent spit-take on Late Night.