"Late Night" Bandleader Rues Bachmann Kerfuffle

The Roots' Questlove apologizes, in a way, for igniting controversy around Michele Bachmann's visit to the Fallon show

By Eric Alt
|  Friday, Dec 2, 2011  |  Updated 8:00 AM EDT
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NBC and Jimmy Fallon both issued apologies to presidential hopeful Michele Bachmann over her controversial visit to "Late Night with Jimmy Fallon," now the man behind it all is speaking up.

Questlove, the leader of "Late Night's" house band The Roots, expresses regret over his choice to play the Fishbone song "Lyin' Ass Bitch" as Bachmann's intro music.

In an interview with the music web site Pitchfork, his first since the incident and his first comment on the incident save an official statement claiming the song choice was "spur of the moment," Questlove admits the backlash has been extreme.

“Blocking 3,500 Tea Party extremists [on Twitter] in a three-day period is no fun,” he says. “In the end, was it worth it? Absolutely not."

He goes on to explain that, although the song choice was clearly a shot at Bachmann, he and his bandmates did not expect to be labeled misogynists over it as well.

“It wasn’t like a chess move where you have to think 12 steps ahead; you’re just, like, ‘F***, all right, I’m gonna do it,’ in a kamikaze-type way. And I really didn’t think about how it could be perceived as a misogynist swipe," he says. 

"I forgot 'bitch' is actually in the title," he continues. "It deeply offended a lot of women's groups and non-Bachmann supporters, and for that I'm deeply sorry. I was really just going with her whole revisionist history angle. I wasn't calling it out on  her being a woman." 

Questlove also acknowledges that he and the band were reprimanded "severely" by NBC brass over the incident. No word on whether they are all, per Fallon's joking Tweet, still "grounded."

Selected Reading: Pitchfork, New York Post, Detroit Free Press

 

 

 

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