Mos Def

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Mos Def
Def performing at the 2012 Ilosaarirock festival
Def performing at the 2012 Ilosaarirock festival
Background information
Birth nameDante Terrell Smith
Also known as
  • Yasiin Bey
  • Black Dante
  • Dante Beze
  • Flaco
  • El-Bey the Moor
Born (1973-12-11) December 11, 1973 (age 48)
New York City, U.S.
Genres
Occupation(s)
  • Rapper
  • singer
  • songwriter
  • record producer
  • actor
  • activist
Instruments
Years active1994–present
Labels
Member ofBlack Star
Formerly of

Dante Terrell Smith (born December 11, 1973)[4] is an Emmy- and Golden Globe-nominated American actor and a Grammy-nominated rapper known by the stage name Mos Def. Mos Def started his hip hop career in a group called Urban Thermo Dynamics, after which he appeared on albums by Da Bush Babees and De La Soul. He formed the duo Black Star with Talib Kweli and they released the well-received album Black Star in 1998. He was a major force in the late 1990s underground hip hop explosion spearheaded by Rawkus Records. As a solo artist he has released three albums Black on Both Sides (1999) The New Danger (2004), and True Magic (2006).[4]

Filmography[change | change source]

Year Movie Role Notes
1991 The Hard Way Dead Romeos Gang Member
1997 Ghosts Townsperson
1998 Where's Marlowe? Wilt Crawley
2000 Freestyle: The Art of Rhyme Himself
Bamboozled Big Blak Afrika Also recorded a song for the movie's soundtrack with other members of the Mau Maus
Island of the Dead Robbie J
2001 Carmen: A Hip Hopera Lieutenant Miller
Monster's Ball Ryrus Cooper
2002 Showtime Lazy Boy
Civil Brand Michael Meadows
Brown Sugar Chris Anton Vichon
My Wife and Kids Tommy 1 episode: Chair Man of the Board
2003 The Italian Job Left Ear
2004 The Woodsman Detective Lucas
Something the Lord Made Vivien Thomas Nominated - Emmy for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Miniseries or a Movie
Nominated - Golden Globe for Best Performance by an Actor in a Mini-Series or a Motion Picture Made for Television
Nominated - Image Awards for Outstanding Actor in a Mini-Series or Television Movie
2005 Lackawanna Blues The Bandleader
The Boondocks (2005-2008) Voice Of Gangstalicious
The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy Ford Prefect
2006 Dave Chappelle's Block Party Himself
16 Blocks Eddie Bunker
Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby Himself Cameo
Journey to the End of the Night Wemba
2007 Prince Among Slaves Narrator
2008 Be Kind Rewind Mike
Cadillac Records Chuck Berry
2009 Next Day Air Eric
House Lee Season 5, Episode 19, Locked In
2010 I'm Still Here Himself
Bouncing Cats Himself
Yo Gabba Gabba! Super Mr. Superhero Season 3, Episode 44, Superhero
2011 Dexter Brother Sam Season 6, recurring, (credited as "Mos" in 2 episodes, "yasiin bey" in 3 episodes)
2014 Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Baxter Stockman
Life of Crime Ordell Robbie

References[change | change source]

  1. Reese, Eric (2018). "Rise of Hip-Hop in the 2000's". The History of Hip Hop: Volume 1. Barnes & Noble Press. ISBN 9781538076798.
  2. Johnson, Josh (May 27, 2014). "Steal This Track from Courier GT". The Denver Post. Archived from the original on July 15, 2021. Retrieved July 15, 2021.
  3. O'Connor, Christopher (March 29, 2000). "Common Moves Toward a Progressive Hip-Hop". MTV News. Retrieved July 15, 2021.
  4. 4.0 4.1 allmusic Biography

Other websites[change | change source]