In perhaps the most welcome news of a musician having written a memoir since R. Kelly unleashed Soula Coasta: The Diary of Me upon the world last year, universally beloved Roots drummer, producer, tweeter, house band anchor and all-round muso extraordinaire Ahmir ‘Questlove’ Thompson will publish an autobiography this summer entitled Mo’ Meta Blues: The World According to Questlove. Presumably seeking to right the wrong of his not being included in Barnes & Noble’s children’s hip-hop biographies section, Questlove has co-authored the book with Ben Greenman, acclaimed author of fiction in his own right and an editor at The New Yorker. The memoir will be released by Hachette imprint Grand Central Publishing on June 18 in America and a week later in the UK and, as you can see by casting an eye above, has the cover art to beat this year.
According to the blurb: ‘[Questlove] reveals his own formative experiences-from growing up in 1970’s West Philly as the son of a 1950’s doo-wop singer, to finding his own way though the music world and ultimately co-founding and rising up with The Roots, aka, the last hip hop band on Earth. The book also has some (many) random (and not) musings about the state of hip hop, the state of music criticism, the state of statements, as well as a plethora of run-ins with celebrities, idols and fellow artists, from Stevie Wonder to KISS to D’Angelo to Jay-Z to Dave Chappelle to…you ever seen Prince rollerskate?!?’
As even the most casual Roots fan knows, the man is not short of connections, having collaborated with as varied a cast as Dirty Projectors, Sufjan Stevens, Jim James, John Legend, Betty Wright, Joanna Newsom, Elvis Costello, Mos Def, Talib Kweli and Common, and that’s just in the past five years of a discography that spans two decades, not to mention The Roots’ current gig as house band on Late Night With Jimmy Fallon. Even if you’re not a fan of The Roots (and seriously, who even are you), this is a man with more than enough stories to hold your interest.
He was chief hack and music editor of webzine Brazen from 2006 to 2010, and hosted Left of the Dial on Subcity Radio from 2008 to 2011.
He can be heard semi-regularly on the podcast of Scottish cultural blog Scots Whay Hae ('20th best website in Scotland!' - The List), and in 2011 founded Seen Your Video, a film and music podcast and blog based in Glasgow. He has a Masters degree in Scottish Literature from the University of Glasgow that will never have any practical application. You are on a hiding to nothing if you follow him on Twitter expecting any kind of hot publishing scoop.