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Two white NBC cameramen say ”Tonight Show” bandleader Questlove had them fired for simply receiving a racist text — while The Roots frontman protected a black employee who got the same message, according to a new million lawsuit.
The Peacock network canned Kurt Decker and Michael Cimino over the June 19, 2017 incident “on the basis of the color of their skin,” the camera operators say in the Manhattan Supreme Court suit against both NBC and Questlove.
Last summer an unnamed “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon” stagehand sent Decker and Cimino the unsolicited text that included “a piece of fried chicken with a bite out of it along with a racial slur that inevitably depicts African Americans,” their attorney Richard Roth told The Post.
Roth declined to repeat the slur but said it included the n-word.
The network also barred the cameramen from discussing their ouster with former colleagues, so they couldn’t defend themselves against charges of bigotry.
Thompson and Jay Lonick, a childhood friend, were known for improvisational "call and response" percussion battles with plastic buckets, crates, and shopping carts.
This style translated into Thompson's usual drumset arrangement, with most drums and cymbals positioned at waist level, emulating his original street setups.
Questlove served as executive producer for D'Angelo's 2000 album Voodoo, Slum Village's album Fantastic, Vol.
2, and Common's albums Like Water for Chocolate and Electric Circus.