Ahmir "Questlove" Thompson, drummer for the hip-hop band The Roots, which tours around the world and is the house band on NBC's Late Night With Jimmy Fallon, is easily recognizable. He's a large guy — wide and of above-average height. Then, of course, there's his trademark Afro, which sprouts like an antenna from the back of the bandstand where he plays the drums.
With such distinguishable features, it's no wonder he gets stopped often in New York City, but as he explains to Daily Intelligencer, it's not always by a fan seeking an autograph.
While Questlove hasn't been stopped and frisked in the classic sense — on the street, hands up against the wall, that sort of thing — he says he's been needlessly stopped three times in just the past year while driving.
"I guess to some people I might look suspicious, a person of my stature, my physical appearance in a high-end silver car, but that's how I get around the city," he says. "I don't tweet about it because it happens so much that it's just regular to me. It's like breathing."
He admits he's famous enough that he can usually get out of most situations once the cops have recognized him up close, but from afar, he's just like every other big black man with suspicious-looking hair.
Read more at Daily Intelligencer.
Jozen Cummings is the author and creator of the popular relationship blog Until I Get Married, which is currently in development for a television series with Warner Bros. He also hosts a weekly podcast with WNYC about Empire called Empire Afterparty, is a contributor at VerySmartBrothas.com and works at Twitter as an editorial curator. Follow him on Twitter.