Watch 'Hamilton' Star Lin-Manuel Miranda Freestyle With the Roots - Rolling Stone
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Watch ‘Hamilton’ Star Lin-Manuel Miranda Freestyle With the Roots

Broadway actor and Black Thought create impromptu rhymes around random words like “Mars, Hot Pocket, Channing Tatum”

Lin-Manuel Miranda, creator and star of the hip-hop Broadway musical Hamilton, stopped by The Tonight Show Friday to talk about his groundbreaking, universally acclaimed show, his charitable efforts and show off his impressive freestyle skills. For the occasion, host Jimmy Fallon unveils the Wheel of Freestyle, where Miranda and the Roots‘ Black Thought are tasked with creating rhymes around a random trio of terms, like “Rainbow, Pancake, Slam Dunk” and “Mars, Hot Pocket, Channing Tatum.” It’s only a game but Miranda no doubt showcases the talent that has made Hamilton the talk of Broadway.

Miranda also revealed that Fallon had won a unique charity auction item: An outgoing voicemail box message recorded by the Hamilton star on Fallon’s phone, which Fallon plays for the audience. The Hamilton cast recording has found surprise success outside of Broadway; as Fallon notes, the album frequently pops up on Spotify’s albums chart, a rare occurrence for a cast recording. With that, Miranda thanks the Roots for Hamilton‘s viral success, since the album was executive produced by The Tonight Show house band, who were early supporters of the musical.

“Our dream collaborators were [the Roots] because they play every genre on your show every night, and they just can do anything,” Miranda said. “So we were like ‘God, if we can get the Roots to come to the show, maybe they would get it.’ So it’s been just an amazing collaboration.”


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