The Times podcast: Black joy in Questlove’s “Summer of Soul”

Questlove Oscars
Musician Questlove arriving at the 92nd Academy Awards on Feb. 9, 2020, at the Dolby Theatre at Hollywood & Highland Center in Hollywood.
(Jay L. Clendenin/Los Angeles Times)

The Roots drummer and music legend Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson sifted through 40 hours of archival footage of the 1969 Harlem Cultural Festival for his documentary, “Summer of Soul.” It was a festival where legends like Nina Simone and Stevie Wonder performed in the same summer as Woodstock.

The film is now in the running for Best Original Documentary at this year’s Oscars. So today, we’re airing an episode with Questlove from our sister podcast, “The Envelope.”


Host: “The Envelope” host Mark Olsen

Guests: Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson

More reading:

Review: ‘Summer of Soul’: A rousing cultural and musical revolution, now finally seen

Questlove’s ‘Summer of Soul’ is much more than a music documentary

Meet the archivist who saved the historic footage that became ‘Summer of Soul’

About The Times

“The Times” is made by columnist Gustavo Arellano, senior producers Denise Guerra, Shannon Lin and Kasia Broussalian and producers Melissa Kaplan, Ashlea Brown and Angel Carreras. Our engineer is Mario Diaz. Our editors are Lauren Raab and Kinsee Morlan. Our executive producers are Jazmín Aguilera and Shani O. Hilton. Our theme song was composed by Andrew Eapen.