While A Tribe Called Quest prepares to ride off into the rap sunset, a duo inspired by the group, Black Star, has just released their debut album, entitled “Mos Def and Talib Kweli are Black Star.”
Rapper Mos Def got his break by appearing on De La Soul’s last album, “Stakes Is High,” while both Def and Kweli contributed solo cuts to the recent “Lyricist Lounge, Volume 1″ compilation.
Def and Kweli have scored underground hits with “Fortified Live” and “Universal Magnetic” as part of other groups and on their own, and the duo’s first single, “Definition,” is already generating buzz across urban radio.
Def and Kweli stopped by the MTV New York studios last week, and described their own definition for the style and meaning behind its new single.
“We just really wanted to do something that people were familiar with,”
Mos Def said, “but that wasn’t sort of prostituting [the rap] whole tradition
[of just doing] a popular song from back in the day.”
“We wanted to be able to add something different to [the sample],” Def said of the song — which includes some reggae snippets, “and still make some commentary about some of the more recent tragedies and developments in hip-hop, especially related to Tupac and Biggie. We still wanted it to be entertaining, but just drop [the message in the song] so that people had it in their minds.” [28.8 RealVideo]
Members of De La Soul and the Roots turned up for Black Star’s album release party in New York City on Wednesday night, along with fellow rappers Common and Jeru.