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STORY OF SONG

“Definition” is the first single from Black Star’s only album “Mos Def & Talib Kweli Are Black Star”, released in 1998.

“Definition” is the third track from the group’s eponymously titled album, and interpolates many songs from Boogie Down Productions. According to Genius.com, the track is Black Star’s version of violence in hip-hop and their dislike of it. The track as released two years after the death of hip-hop legends 2Pac and Biggie Smalls. In an interview with djbooth.net in 2017, producer Hi-Tek (Tony Cottrell) spoke about the creation of Defintion: “I went home to my Cincinnati studio and just did what I felt from it. I think I made the beat on the MPC60. Basically, I just flipped the ‘P Is Free’ beat and put my own thing on it. I gave Mos the beat and he liked it. He flew me and Kweli out to LA— he was out there doing some movie stuff—and found a studio through a good friend of ours. Even when he gave me the idea, I felt like it was too simple for me. At the time, I felt like I had something to prove to separate myself from a lot of other East Coast producers. I always try to do something different.”

The music video for the track can be found on YouTube via YouTube user: “alexeipanovich”, and was uploaded to the site on the 8th April 2006. The video shows Black Star singing “Definition” around New York, in cars and around the city. As of October 2019, the video has over 6.8 million views and over 34 thousand likes.

Release Date: 26th May 1998

Songwriter/s: Dante Smith, Talib Kweli Greene & Tony Cottrell

Producer/s: Hi-Tek

Label/s: Rawkus Records

Chart Rankings: “Definition” hit three different UD Billboard charts: ranking #6 on the “Hot 100”, #31 on “Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles & Tracks” and #3 on “Hot Rap Singles”.

The lyrics to “Definition” can be viewed here: LINK

Added by

Tala Woods

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