Known as Black Thought, MC of the Philadelphia-based Hip-Hop group The Roots, as well as an occasional actor
Tariq Trotter has been rapping for 19 years, ten of which have been shared with his legendary crew, the Philadelphia live hip-hop band, The Roots. They have been hailed as pioneers of the burgeoning sound now being identified as the “Philly Sound.” Tariq “Black Thought” Trotter has been the highly recognized voice of this sound.…
Tariq Trotter has been rapping for 19 years, ten of which have been shared with his legendary crew, the Philadelphia live hip-hop band, The Roots. They have been hailed as pioneers of the burgeoning sound now being identified as the “Philly Sound.” Tariq “Black Thought” Trotter has been the highly recognized voice of this sound.
He is the MC, whose lyrics have recalled the poetic passion of Amiri Baraka, the truth and rawness of Donald Goines, the unquestionable flow and lyrical styles of Big Daddy Kane and Rakim, and a skill and rhythmic cadence that can be liked to no one but himself. He has served as the voice to so many poignant thoughts wrapped in a skill level we thought had been lost.
The labels and hopeful projections placed upon The Roots, was one of the driving forces behind Black Thought’s desire to create his own image, and define his sound and album.
He considers the creation of a solo album, his “way of showing another dimension of myself, while still being a member of the Roots, I can have other grooves of myself. With the solo album, I have a chance to really highlight myself by using very straight ahead rhymes & beats. But one thing I want to take from The Roots into my own work is the idea of pushing the musical envelope.”
A versatile MC, Black Thought has held his own through one capricious decade of hip-hop, finally to emerge like a phoenix from a flame. Like any great artist, Black Thought has learned to layer and play with the phonetics and syllables of his words. Yet, he all the while keeps in use his powerful metaphoric imagery that makes him one of the most intense and ingenious lyricist of our time.
Although enigmatic and rather indefinable, Black Thought’s performing skills have carved him an undeniable niche as one of hip-hop greatest live acts. His braggadocio and stage prowess is magnetic allowing him to capture almost any crowd he performs for. It is not uncommon for him to slide effortlessly into a Louis Armstrong scat from his “Da Skat” lyrics and then into a country ho-down.
His stage presence is so well recognized that in 1999 he and The Roots won a Grammy for their performance of “You Got Me” featuring Erykah Badu. His performance and presence on the stage has attracted a wide range of musical artists such as Rage Against the Machine, Les Nubians, De La Soul, and Big Pun, to invite him to join them as a guest on their work.
In addition to musical artists, his charismatic and legendary performances have caught the eye of film directors. He has been in three movies, Bamboozled, a Spike Lee joint, Brooklyn Babylon, and Perfume.
Yet, as an MC his heart belongs to the music regardless of his other ventures. When asked why he feels as though he needs to put out solo album although all the Roots CDs are critically acclaimed he responds: “I think at this point I just want to show the world I’m a power player in terms of being an mc in the world of hip-hop.” Seems like an unnecessary concern for someone who has fronted one of the most avant-garde and legendary hip-hop crews in music history. For Black Thought this is just a beginning to revealing his many sides of a story.
Ernie was perfect for our Elders Conference at Little River Casino Resort in Manistee, Michigan. We will definitely be using PDA again!
LITTLE RIVER BAND OF OTTAWA INDIANS
Our speaker was great and the crowd enjoyed her! She was very engaging. Thank you again PDA for the great list of suggestions!
Everything went great! and our speaker was wonderful! Thank you so much for all your help PDA! Looking forward to the next one.
UNIVERSITY OF MISSOURI – KANSAS CITY
I hope that this message finds you well. We had a phenomenal time with Atsuko this past Thursday. We wanted to just let you know how amazing she was. All those that were in attendance thoroughly enjoyed her and had nothing but amazing things to say about her. Thank you for working with us to make sure this happened!
BAYLOR UNIVERSITY CAMPUS
We had a fantastic day with Inge! She was very engaging with all those that attended. Her personal stories about the holocaust were very special and we were moved that she was willing to share them with everyone. Thank you again, PDA for all your hard work and dedication to make this program such a success!
SALT LAKE COMMUNITY COLLEGE
Dear PDA Group, Thank you so much for your hard work in scheduling our speaker! From the moment we reached out to you the first time, you worked with us on all details and logistics and kept us up-to-date on the progress. Thank you for all your hard work on making our event such a success! We couldn't have done it without you and your team!
Thank you again, Dr. Kimbrough, for a great presentation, our attendees are still talking about it!
Dr. Henry Lee's presentation was entertaining, insightful and wise. I, and everyone at Pfizer, especially appreciate the remarks you directed about following your passion and preparing yourself to excel. Thank you, everyone, at PDA for helping to make this happen!
The event was successful! I received many messages expressing how awesome, outstanding and inspiring Ms. Webb-Christburg's speech was."
DR. MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR. MEMORIAL BREAKFAST, BOSTON, MLK SPEAKER
Everything went well. Atsuko was very easy to work with and the students enjoyed her performance! Thank you again for your recommendation and I hope to work with you again in the future!
CENTRAL MICHIGAN UNIVERSITY
Dr. Novello left this morning after a very successful event on our campus! Thank you PDA Group for your help from the first phone to the last you were with us every step of the way.
GRAND VALLEY STATE UNIVERSITY
Jordan Carlos was very very entertaining! A majority of students who answered the event survey indicated they really enjoyed Jordan and definitely will bring him back!
WESTERN CAROLINA UNIVERSITY
On behalf of myself and my organization Entertainment Unlimited the Campus Programming Board of Ferris State University, we thank you PDA and Dan for a successful event!! Dan was magnificent! Students really enjoyed the presentation. I know I did. Can't wait to bring in more programs with PDA Group.
FERRIS STATE UNIVERSITY
It was a great pleasure to work with PDA Group! The communication was always prompt, friendly and helpful. We loved the speakers and events we booked through Mr. Peter Walker (PDA Group).
WESTERN MICHIGAN UNIVERSITY
Thank you, Peter, for all your help, you'll be happy to know that the event went incredibly well! Aneesa Ferreira was by far one of the best speakers we've ever had!
Exchanging Ideas, Long Sessions, Loose Vibes and Creativity
Respect Your Co-Founder
Stay True To Your Mission
Tarik Trotter, aka Black Thought of The Roots, In Conversation
Tariq Trotter, aka Black Thought Freestyle at Other Side Speaker Series
1 HOUR OR LESS