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Roy Hargrove: Groovin’ Hard

Roy Hargrove
Roy Hargrove
Roy Hargrove

It’s Grammy Night, late, and the party has hit a groove.

The house is tight-packed but loose with movement: heads bobbing, hands in the air, bodies in fluid time. Onstage, Jaguar Wright and Musiq (Soulchild) lean into each other-now crooning, now crying, their vocal lines snakelike and intertwined. Sitting tall at the drums, the Roots’ Ahmir “?uestlove” Thompson whips a crackling backbeat; to his left, Me’Shell NdegéOcello hangs back on bass. James Poyser presides over a keyboard rig.

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Originally Published
Nate Chinen

Nate Chinen

Nate Chinen is the director of editorial content for WBGO and a longtime contributor to JazzTimes, which published 125 installments of his column “The Gig” between 2004 and 2017. For 12 years, he was a critic for The New York Times; prior to that, he wrote about jazz for the Village Voice, the Philadelphia City Paper, and several other publications. He is the author of Playing Changes: Jazz for the New Century (2018) and the co-author of George Wein’s autobiography Myself Among Others: A Life in Music (2003).