The Roots Send Wake-Up Call To “Unconscious” Population

Combining elements of jazz, spoken word and a human beat box, the Philadelphia hip-hop collective known as the Roots are set to deliver the group’s fourth album, “Things Fall Apart,” to record stores this week.

The first single from the record is the hypnotic “You Got Me,” which includes some guest vocals from R&B siren Erykah Badu, and the video for the song — which shows people lying on the ground — has particular meaning to the Roots’ lead MC, Black Thought.

“To me, the image of people sprawled out, laying down in the streets represent the percentage of the population that is unconscious,” Thought said, “not really walking around with their eyes open to what’s going on around them.”

The Roots will kick-off a month-long tour in support of the new album on March 3 in Seattle, Washington.