Mos Def is one of my favorite rapper/actors. He is very socially conscious, although what he’s done for charity escapes me. (I know he had a book store or some shit in the Black Star days.)
Bono is one of the most influential people on the planet, using his celebrity to further many causes. You can’t help but be aware of Bono’s deeds, from the (red) line of clothing that helps battle Aids in Africa to his many speaking engagements with politicos.
Mos Def’s latest album, True Magic, has a track on it entitled, “Dollar Days for New Orleans.” It’s the rapper’s take on the tragedy of Hurricane Katrina and the comedy of our government’s reaction.
It’s a great track and manages to repeat much of the expected angst in a fresh way. BUT. The Mos Def’er also takes a potshot at Bono, questioning why the U2 front man didn’t anything to help in the Katrina aftermath, etc.
It boils down to this: U2 is nothing without support from the U.S. So why does Bono spend time raising money for far-off countries when there was shit to deal with right here, in his adopted home?
The cynic in you may be thinking this is Mos Def’s way of upping sales. I doubt it, as Mos will never be cross-over material.
Either way, it made me think. And that’s a lot more than the latest Nas and Jay-Z record will ever do for me.