“Papa Root” was the original starter for Kinston drummer Willie Moore’s band. A trumpet player, he brought Melvin and Maceo Parker into his group to play. Melvin Parker says, “We used to listen to Papa Root going to the gig and back, listen to him talk about music, and how music is supposed to be played, and what you’re supposed to do. You know, if you listen, you can learn.”
Papa Root was known as a sharp dresser who just about everybody in Kinston knew. He influenced the Kinston musicians who grew up in the 1940s and 50s.