Mos Def on Cape Town.

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Yasiin Bey, known as Mos Def, has taken up residence in Cape Town since last May and is now a familiar face around the city. He’s still working on new music, specifically a tribute album to legendary Gil Scott, and has involved himself in various music-related events in SA, including the Music Exchange conference at the City Hall. The Mail & Guardian interviewed him last week about his new home:

‘Last year May, I came [to Cape Town] and I said I’m not leaving. I’m staying. It’s a beautiful place. It has the ocean, mountain, botanical gardens and beautiful people.’

‘I came to Cape Town in 2009 and I was like, “Yeah”. I know when the good vibe gets to you. I thought about this place every day when I left. People were like, “[Y]ou’re crazy. It’s light years away. They’re crazy. They’re going to eat you. You shouldn’t go there.” I said, “I’m going.”‘

‘Man, I’m going to tell you something. For a guy like me, with five or six generations from the same town in America, to leave America, things gotta be not so good with America.’

‘There are some beautiful places in America. I love Brooklyn. New York City needs to thank Brooklyn every day just for existing. That’s how I feel about it. It was a hard thing to leave home. But I’m glad I did.’

‘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.’

‘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.’

‘The determination of people that I see in this city and country … writers, graphic designers, painters, so many fantastic people. Yet I see the same people, many of them doubtful or fearful or feeling that what they have to offer is beautiful only to them but that it is not valuable to the world.’

‘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.’

‘The arts, the crafts, the energy, the people coming out of this continent, are like no other in the world. Be aware that you are in a special place at a very special and unique time in history.’

‘Be encouraged. Yes, it is crazy, but that’s okay. Hope has never been and will never be lost.’

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    sara

    March 12, 2014

    this is the exact same interview, word by word, published by don’t party.

    I don’t know who-copied-who, but it’s boring to read the same phrases.

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