pxdrive.com -> Mos Def
|Mos Def Page: 1|
Music rapper and actor Mos Def pictures (pic) and photo gallery, albums covers pictures.
Birth name: Dante Terrell Smith.
Born: December 11, 1973 Brooklyn, New York City, USA.
Mos Def biography (bio):
Mos Def started his rap career as a member of the Native Tongue Posse collective and by guesting on albums by Da Bush Babees and De La Soul. He released a well-received album with Talib Kweli as Black Star, and was a major force in the late 90s underground hip hop explosion spearheaded by Rawkus Records.
Initially recognized for his musical output, Def's screen work since the early 2000s has established him as one of only a handful of rappers who have garnered critical approval for their acting work. Def is also an outspoken critic in social and political issues, and was particularly vocal in the wake of Hurricane Katrina in 2005.
Dante Terrell Smith was born December 11, 1973 in Brooklyn, New York City to Sheron Smith and Abdul Rahman (Darrell Toler). He has a younger brother, DCQ, and a younger sister, Ces. He grew up during the golden age of hip-hop and has been rapping and acting since he was 9 years old.
Mos Def began his music career in 1994 in the short-lived group Urban Thermo Dynamics with his younger brother DCQ and his younger sister Ces. Despite their contract with Payday Records, the group only released two singles, and their debut album Manifest Destiny was not released until 2004, when it was distributed by Illson Media. In 1996, he emerged as a solo artist and worked with De La Soul and da Bush Babees, before he released his own first single, "Universal Magnetic", which was a huge underground hit.
After signing with Rawkus Records, Mos Def and Talib Kweli formed the group Black Star, and released a full length album under the name, Mos Def and Talib Kweli are Black Star. The album was released in 1998 and featured Hi-Tek as producer on most of the tracks.
Mos Def released his solo debut Black on Both Sides, in 1999 through Rawkus Records. Def was also featured on Rawkus' influential Lyricist Lounge and Soundbombing series of compilations. After the collapse of Rawkus, he signed to Interscope/Geffen Records, which released his second solo album The New Danger in 2004. Mos Def has drawn some criticism from his fan base about "keeping it real" after he appeared in a commercial that endorsed the GMC Denali sport utility vehicle. Mos Def's final solo album for Geffen Records,True Magic, was quietly released on December 29, 2006.
Throughout his music career he has received several Grammy Award nominations, first for "Ghetto Rock" from his 2004 album The New Danger, and then in 2007, when "Undeniable" was nominated for Best Rap Solo Performance.
Mos Def's background in film and theater date back to his days at New York University, studying experimental theater. He began his professional acting career at the age of 14, appearing in the TV movie God Bless the Child, starring Mare Winningham. He then played the oldest child in the short-lived family sitcom, You Take the Kids, starring Nell Carter and Roger E. Mosley. His most notable acting role before his music career was that of Bill Cosby's sidekick on the short-lived detective show, The Cosby Mysteries.
After brief appearances in Bamboozled and Monster's Ball, Mos re-invigorated his acting career with his performance as a talented rapper who is reluctant to sign to a major label in Brown Sugar. He was nominated for an Image Award and a Teen Choice Award.
In 2002, he played the role of Booth in Suzan-Lori Parks' Topdog/Underdog, a Tony-nominated and Pulitzer-winning Broadway play. He also received positive notices as the quirky Left Ear in the blockbuster hit, The Italian Job.
In television, Mos Def has appeared on Comedy Central's Chappelle's Show, and has hosted the award-winning HBO spoken word show, Def Poetry since its inception. The show's sixth season aired in 2007.
Mos won Best Actor, Independent Movie at the 2005 Black Reel Awards for his portrayal of the skeptical Detective Sgt. Lucas in The Woodsman. For his portrayal of Vivien Thomas in HBO's film, Something the Lord Made, he was nominated for an Emmy Award, a Golden Globe, and won the Image Award. He then landed the role of Ford Prefect in the 2005 movie adaptation of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.
In 2006, Mos Def appeared in Dave Chappelle's Block Party alongside fellow Black Star companion Talib Kweli, while also contributing to the film's soundtrack. Also, Mos Def was featured as the black banjo player in the infamous "Pixie Sketch" from Chappelle's Show: The Lost Episodes. He was later edited out of it on the dvd. Additionally, Mos Def is in the motion picture 16 Blocks along with co-stars Bruce Willis and David Morse. During the first season of Boondocks, Mos was given the opportunity of starring as "Gangstalicious". He is also set to be in Toussaint, a film about Haitian revolutionary Toussaint L'Ouverture, opposite Don Cheadle and Wesley Snipes. He made a cameo appearance playing himself in the movie Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby.
Mos Def was first exposed to Islam at age 13 by his father. He became a Muslim at age 19 after getting to know Muslim rappers including Ali Shaheed Muhammad and Q-Tip of the group A Tribe Called Quest.
Mos Def was married to Maria Yepes-Smith for 9 years before filing for divorce in 2005. As part of the divorce settlement, he was to pay $10,000 a month (starting January 2006) in child support to his 7 and 8 year old daughters. On February 14, after paying $2000 less than the required value for two months in a row, a judge ordered him to pay the full amount. He reportedly has five children in total.
He has recently taken up skateboarding, and is thus one of few rappers who skateboards. He also said he's "looking to host a skateboarding rally event" in the United Arab Emirates.