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Mos Def

Mos Def is a Brooklyn-born rapper, who actually began his performing career on The Cosby Mysteries in 1994. He switched to rap music and worked with De La Soul and da Bush Babees before releasing his own first single, "Universal Magnetic". It did quite well, and he moved to Rawkus Records. Mos Def and Talib Kweli released Black Star, a full length album, in 1998, with DJ Hi-Tek as producer. Mos Def released his solo debut, Black on Both Sides, in 1999.

An earlier generation of rappers, including Brand Nubian and De La Soul, had made some groundbreaking, thoughtful rap music. They had been replaced by gangsta rap though, and Mos Def was one of the principal causes of a revival in such socially aware rap, which also involved Dr. Octagon, Kweli, Common and others.

He returned to acting in 2000 and starred in Monster's Ball and Bamboozled, two major motion pictures. He also starred in Topdog/Underdog on Broadway.

He was also part of Black Jack Johnson, an all-black rock group (also including Dr. Know, Bernie Worrell, Doug Wimbish and Will Calhoun) to rescue rock music from what they saw as boring and staid groups, such as Limp Bizkit, whom Mos Def openly despises. The group has performed a few concerts.

Mos Def Discography
Year Title Label
1998 Black Star Priority Records
1999 Black on Both Sides Rawkus Records