Yasiin Bey has become quite the globetrotter, this after making the country of South Africa his home after a visit last May sold him on leaving his hometown of Brooklyn. During a chat at the Music Exchange conference in Cape Town over the weekend, the artist formerly known as Mos Def broke down why he made the move and much more in his keynote speech.
South African newspaper Mail & Guardian covered the Music Exchange conference, which is geared to help budding musicians, filmmakers and other creative persons learn more about their respective industries. A quick scan of the Music Exchange’s site, which lists Bey as Mos Def, shows that his appearance at the event was a major deal.
More from the Mail & Guardian:
He sums up Cape Town and South Africa in one word: “crazy”.
“I got the vibes to be here and now I’m here. It’s amazing and it’s crazy. South Africa is crazy. Cape Town is crazy. I’ve seen some of the craziest people in my life walk down Long Street. And I’m from New York,” says Bey.
“These fights, they’re crazy. These guys with the vests, helping me park [my car], they’re crazy. Angry face people … crazy. People complaining about nothing, crazy. But worthwhile. Not always easy but more beautiful than a lot of places I have been to.”
Bey adds that while leaving his hometown was tough, he feels that the move to South Africa was the best for him at this stage of his life.
“I’ve been some places, some of the best places in Europe and the US. Amazing talents and amazing places. But no place is like Africa. No place,” Bey said.
According to the Mail & Guardian, Bey is working on a tribute album in honor of the late Gil Scott-Heron and other works.
Photo: Music Exchange/YouTube