Max Roach, Gene Krupa, Ringo Starr, Keith Moon, "?uestlove," Phil Collins--drummers drive the beat of the world. And Max was the best of all. Max was a master of "our" gift to the world, Jazz. No, you boneheads--it wasn't Hip Hop. JAZZ.
I met him in 2002 in NY when my first book came out. We were guests on BET Tonight with Ed Gordon, along with Miz Jones (of big boobs and radio fame) and a celebrity gossip columnist whose name escapes me but she was one of Michael Jackson's mouthpieces on the pundit shows during the molestation trial. I was in the chair getting the oil shine on my face reduced before the taping, and Max walked in and said: "Make up? Man, you are a writer, not a movie star. It is your job to be natural." So I shined on TV. But he and I entertained Ed and sounded halfway intelligent. We were schduled to come back, but then BET cancelled all of it's news and public affairs programing. But Max rises above the fads and marketing and pandering. Max. The artist. Being natural.