Ski Beatz Takes Responsibility for the Mos Def/Yasiin Bey Confusion (Video)
Last week, a track was released, titled “Sensei on the Block,” that was credited to Mos Def & Ski Beatz. As the track appeared to be new and came with no explanation, many (including AFH) saw the song as a return by the MC and activist now known as Yasiin Bey, to the professional name he used for much of his career. The track and the perceived name change set off a frenzy that made its way back to Bey.
A day after the track was released, Bey issued a video statement clarifying that he had not returned to the name “Mos Def” and chastised the person who released the song and its misleading artwork, saying “any music that’s been released under that name, recently, is without my consent” and “it’s being sold illegally.” With that being the second clarification Bey issued in less than a month–the first being in connection with a video that was leaked where he challenged any rappers to battle himself, Black Thought and King Los–his response was met with ambivalence, by some.
Now, producer Ski Beatz has come forward to take responsibility for the confusion. In a videotaped statement, he acknowledges that he is the one who released “Sensei on the Block,” and says that he produced the record in 2010 or 2011. He goes on to state “I want to set the record straight. The media…and it’s not the media’s fault…but the media made it seem like Yasiin went back and changed his name to Mos Def. That wasn’t the case. I chose to use the name ‘Mos Def’ because at the time (the record was produced), that’s the name he was going by. And, I recently spoke to Yasiin and he was upset about that, so I want to formally apologize to Yassin.” Ski also confirms Bey’s statement and takes accountability for releasing the record without Bey’s knowledge or consent, saying “and also I want to apologize to Yasiin for not officially getting the greenlight to drop that record.”
It’s commendable to see the producer own up to his actions and make public amends. Here’s Ski Beatz statement in full.