Mos Def, now named Yasiin Bey, decided to go by the name that his family and friend would call him since 1999. He talks about his ‘new’ name, style, and his love for the art of Hip Hop.
A Mos by Any Other Name…
“I began to fear that Mos Def was being treated as a product, not a person, so I’ve been going by Yasiin since ’99. At first it was just for friends and family, but now I’m declaring it openly.”
“When my paternal grandfather passed a few years back, I started to wear a shirt and tie every day, like he did. Michael Jackson’s death had a big impact on me, too. Right before the Ecstatic tour in 2009, I began wearing loafers and high-waisted pants. And that’s where my look started.”
“Hip-hop is the last true folk art. I got involved with Ale et Ange because it represents hip-hop in a way that isn’t pandering. It’s nice to see something that’s elegant, skillful, and raw.”
Go to GQ.com for the full interview.