Wednesday, November 4, 2009

The Curious Case of Mos Def

Mos Def is a branding dream. He is a multi-disciplinary artist with an engaging personality who performs around the globe. His music and acting choices are intriguing, hip, quirky and progressive. He moves between worlds with ease, holding his own in the company of award-winning actors like John Malkovich and Adrien Brody, talking religion and nuclear weapons with Salman Rushdie and Christopher Hitchens, and spitting rhymes with Kweli and Kanye.

So where is the center of the Mos Def universe online?

Where is

It points to a MySpace page that doesn't begin to capture the breadth of his work or aptly reflect his place in the culture. Never mind that MySpace isn't reliable or trustworthy.

As a fan visiting, I want to find links to
- Buy his latest release, The Ecstatic
- "Watch Instantly" his available films on Netflix
- Browse his catalog of recordings including soundtracks
- Stream videos of him freestyling and holding court on Bill Maher

And I should certainly be able to find the "semi-exclusive" content that Google will feature as a part of its new music search feature. I understand what the benefit of Google's initiative is for Google and the music service partners.

But is it in Mos Def's best interest for me to go through Google which is going through MySpace to get his work?

My appetite for his work is pretty big. And I trust Mos Def more than I do MySpace. Why won't he directly feed more to me and the thousands of other serious fans?