* indicates required
Okayplayer News

To continue reading

Create a free account or sign in to unlock more free articles.

By continuing, you agree to the Terms of Service and acknowledge our Privacy Policy

The Faces Of Roots Picnic 2016: Backstage Portraits By Shayan Asgharnia
Photo by Shayan Asgharnia | The ever-energetic Black Thought ran a 5K marathon and performed a two-hour set at Roots Picnic.

Roots Picnic Comes To NYC This Weekend...Here's What It Means To Philly

Black Thought at Roots Picnic Black Thought prepares for Roots Picnic in Philly onJune 4, 2016. Photo By Averie Cole for Okayplayer

Every summer Roots Picnic takes over Philadelphia and every summer in recent memory, Okayplayer has made the best of the opportunity to ask an incredible collection of artists "The Questions" that keep us awake at night. As Roots Picnic is coming to New York City for the very first time this weekend, the question very much at the top our minds was quite simply this: How can we capture what the institution of Roots Picnic has meant to Philadelphia? By way of an answer, Questlove, Black Thought, Anderson .Paak, Jidenna, Zoë Kravitz and second-generation Philly royalty Willow Smith all give us their take on what it means to be a part of a Philly tradition, in our behind the scenes OKP TV segment (watch below.)

Along the way, we get a bit of insights into other artists Philly-connections, what's next for them when the summer touring season has come to a close and other tantalizing tidbits. For one thing, we note with interest Questlove's assertion that Roots Picnic 2016 "may be the first picnic with a real future in it." He could be referring to this weekend's New York edition, featuring D'Angelo, John Mayer, Wu Tang Clan, David Byrne and more--which Black Thought had just announced from the stage moments before! On the other hand he could have been teasing the headlining combo of Usher and The Roots would play together again (they have since brought their Picnic show to national television). ...or could he have meant something else?

Watch below, get your tickets for Roots Picnic NYC and if you do make it out this weekend, we suggest you keep an eye on the stage for more pronouncements! See y'all in the park.




Lance Steagall (of COLLABO!)


Ginny Suss

Hope Wilson


Lance Steagall (of COLLABO!)

Jake Remington (of COLLABO!)

Pascal Youance

Rafe Scoobey-Thal

Ralston Smith

Carlos Cardona

Jesse Groening

Raymond "Hidji" Martinez

Emmai Alaquiva

Chris Petricko


Greg Scott

Rob Zogby

Jordan Gilliam

Media Management:

Chinisha Scott

Production Management:

Grace Bellamy

Production Assistants:

Jiro Kohl

Ricardo Sosa

Tim Evans