In an interview with HipHopDX, The Roots’ drummer and band leader Questlove revealed that the original hip-hop live band has recorded 263 new songs for their forthcoming album, tentatively titled End Game. It will be the group’s 17th album release, but the first without the creative input of a very important behind-the-scenes personality, manager Richard Nichols, who passed away in 2014.
The Roots are also currently working on a TV version of author Shea Serrano’s The Rap Yearbook, and will of course continue to be the house band of The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon. The group has also become well-known for their philanthropy of late, but it’s definitely past time they get back to doing what got them here in the first place.
Questlove elaborated on what that process entails in the interview, saying, “So, this will be the first time we had to grow up and resolve our own arguments. But the one thing (Nichols) was talented at was telling us to stop. Usually when we get to 100 songs, he’s like, ‘Guys. You have 100 songs. There’s 14 really good songs in these 100. Let’s stop and concentrate on the 14.’ Right now, we’re at 263. But ideas keep coming. I made the promise that by November 1, we are stopping. And we’re just going to pick a good 14. And I’m certain by then, it’ll be 400 songs.”
The process of paring down that 400 to 14 seems daunting, but for a man who literally has 19 jobs, it shouldn’t be too difficult.