The Roots' tenure as the house band on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon has been marked by inspired choices in walk-on music for the show's guests. Whether it's Public Enemy's jailbreak anthem "Black Steel in the Hour of Chaos" to introduce Martha Stewart; KRS-One's "Sound of the Police" announcing Whoopi Goldberg (think about it); or the Martin theme playing before Steve Martin walked onstage, the band never shies away from a creative choice. This tendency has even landed the group in hot water, as when they nearly got fired in 2011 for playing a snippet of Fishbone's "Lyin' Ass Bitch" before Michelle Bachman's appearance. But their choice of walk-on music for Donald Trump on Thursday may be their best yet.
As the Republican candidate walked onstage, The Roots played (and sang, just so no one could possibly miss it) a snippet of Erykah Badu's song "20 Feet Tall." The lyrics? "Then you, you built a wall / A 20-foot wall / So I couldn’t see." The sly nod to Trump's frequently criticized campaign promise to build a wall on the country's southern border seemed to go unnoticed by The Donald.
The song choice may be even more sly than it seemed at first. The lines that immediately follow the section played by the band seem to be a reference to rising up and overcoming the would-be wall builder. "But if I get off my knees," Badu sings, "I might recall, I'm 20 feet tall."
Watch the intro at the 11:30 mark of the video up top.