Roots welcome Bachmann with pointed song

November 22, 2011 - 10:50 PM

NEW YORK (AP) — A Democratic congresswoman says NBC should apologize for its "insulting and inappropriate" treatment of Republican presidential contender Michele Bachmann when she appeared on Jimmy Fallon's late-night talk show.

As Bachmann was introduced on the show early Tuesday, house band The Roots played a snippet of a 1985 Fishbone song called "Lyin' Ass B----."

Rep. Nita Lowey, of New York, said Bachmann "deserves to be treated with respect."

"No female politician — and no woman — should be subjected to sexist and offensive innuendo like she was last night," Lowey said.

NBC has not commented on The Roots' song choice.

The song begins with a distinctive "la la la la la la la la la" refrain — the only words audible before Bachmann, smiling and waving to the audience, sat down onstage next to Fallon.

The song, about a relationship gone wrong, isn't political. Among its cleanest lyrics: "She always says she needs you, but you know she really don't care."

The Roots' bandleader, Ahmir "Questlove" Thompson, said later Tuesday that the song was a "tongue-in-cheek and spur-of-the-moment decision."

"The show was not aware of it, and I feel bad if her feelings were hurt," Thompson said. "That was not my intention."

Bachmann's campaign did not return messages seeking comment.

Fallon joked on Twitter that Thompson was grounded.

The Roots frequently make sly, often obscure, song choices as Fallon's guests are introduced.

When Fox Business Network's Lou Dobbs came out, they played part of Genesis' "Illegal Alien," a reference to Dobbs' frequent commentaries on illegal immigration. Current TV host Keith Olbermann, formerly of MSNBC, heard part of Klymaxx's "I Miss You." Kathie Lee Gifford was saluted with UB40's "Red Red Wine," a reference to the drink she often shares on-air with "Today" co-host Hoda Kotb.

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AP Music Writer Nekesa Mumbi Moody contributed to this report.