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Outside Lands 2011: The Roots

Photo by Telstar Logistics at Flickr

The Roots have been pumping out mind-blowing examples of first-class musicianship for decades. But you really feel the depths of their talent when they bust out a range of seemingly impromptu live covers, each sounding kinda (dare we say it) better than the original. The Philly collective surprised the crowd with guitar-wailing, seamlessly transitioned covers of "Love to Love You Baby," "Sweet Child of Mine," "Jungle Boogie" and "Bad to the Bone" Saturday night, casting a feel-good dance spell across the entire lawn of the Twin Peaks stage. They eventually brought it all back to their own favorites with "You Got Me," "Next Movement" and "The Seed" to heavy cheers. Their Outside Lands performance drove home this advice: If you ever get the chance to see The Roots live, do it.