finding your roots

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John Legend’s Musical Beginnings

Music artist John Legend discusses his early musical beginnings and shows rare footage where he performs one of his earliest compositions. Watch video from Finding Your Roots with Henry Louis Gates, Jr. Continue reading …

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Branford Marsalis and Harry Connick, Jr.

Henry Louis Gates Jr. reveals the family histories and ancestry of New Orleans-based jazz musicians and friends Branford Marsalis and Harry Connick, Jr. Watch full episode. Episode credits.

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On Location in New Orleans

It’s no mistake that we chose Preservation Hall as our interview site for Branford Marsalis. In the heart of French Quarter, the building was built in 1750. Since then, it’s been a private residence, a tavern, a photo studio and art gallery. Continue reading …

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Musical Royalty

Is musical talent tied to genetics? Branford Marsalis discusses his relative, Wellman Braud, a pioneering jazz bassist who played with jazz greats like Duke Ellington, and was one of the first musicians to employ the walking bassline. Watch video.

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The Rattlesnake

Henry Louis Gates, Jr. tells Harry Connick, Jr. about his previously unknown fifth great grandfather, an infamous 18th-century American privateer. Continue reading …

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About the Series

The basic drive to discover who we are and where we come from is at the core of the new 10-part PBS series Finding Your Roots with Henry Louis Gates, Jr., the 12th series from Professor Gates, the Alphonse Fletcher University Professor at Harvard University and director of the W.E.B. Du Bois Institute for African and African American Research. Filmed on location across the United States, the series premieres nationally Sundays, March 25 – May 20 at 8 pm ET on PBS (check local listings).

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