Ludacris, Nick Cannon & Mos Def On TRL

Most talk television is in repeats this week, but it is ‘Spankin’ New Music Week’ on MTV’s Total Request Live this week. On the lineup will be Ludacris on Monday, Nick Cannon on Tuesday, and Mos Def on Thursday.

Mark Wahlberg & Mos Def Spotted In Mini Cooper

The New York Post reports actor Mark Wahlberg and Mos Def were spotted driving a Mini Cooper on the sidewalk outside Mini of Manhattan on West 57th Street while filming some promo stuff for ‘The Italian Job.’

Rappers Make TV Appearances On Tuesday

Rap acts on talk television this week include Bone Crusher on Last Call with Carson Daly, Lil’ Kim on Live with Regis and Kelly, and Mos Def on BET’s 106 and Park. All appear on Tuesday.

MTV Won’t Play Simmons & Mos Def’s Ads

The New York Times reports Russell Simmons and the rapper Mos Def have said that MTV in the United States would not show antiwar public service commercials they had created. An MTV spokeswoman, who insisted on anonymity, confirmed this, saying in an e-mail message that “MTV does not accept advocacy ads.” Read more.

Common: Rhyming About Bitches and Ho’s Influences Kids

Common has a few pointers for his hip-hop colleagues. “I really don’t want to be preachy,” he says. Amongst his pointers is one that Bill O’Reilly would want to hear: “Words are power. Don’t think you can rap about money and bitches and ho’s and shooting somebody and then make it better by giving ten dollars to somebody in the community. Your words are probably destroying more people than the ten dollars is helping. Your words are affecting the five-year-old riding in the back of their daddy’s car; your words are affecting how the world sees you. I listen to the Roots and Mos Def, and I also listen to Dr. Dre and the Clipse — we just need to have balance in the music.”

‘Electric Circus’ Is Sometimes Miraculous & Insufferable

Jon Caramanica of the Boston Phoenix weighed in on Common’s new album ‘Electric Circus’, calling it “sometimes miraculous, sometimes insufferable” and “almost never boring.” He added, “Mos Def might have more charisma, and Talib Kweli might be more intelligent, but Common remains the most popular of the practicing bohemian MCs. He’s handsome and engaging, and his songs appeal to both women and men. He given life to some of ‘Electric Circus’s’ more mundane material on stage. But the crowd gave him the biggest response when he rapped a few bars of Biggie Smalls and a few bars of the Wu-Tang Clan. We appreciate your excursions on our behalf, they seemed to be saying, but don’t lose sight of those upon whose shoulders you truly stand.” The full review at has since been removed.

Rhythm And Rhymes With Real Star Power

Mos Def and Talib Kweli performed a Wednesday-night benefit show that reunited the Black Star duo at S.O.B.’s. Isaac Guzman of the New York Daily News writes, “Wednesday night showed that their talents are strongest when the two are paired. Kweli’s sharp, rapid flow provided contrast to Mos Def’s laid-back melodicism. While Kweli delivered rhymes filled with searing images, Mos Def countered with warm entreaties to spread love, including his mother, Umi’s, maxim to ‘Shine your light on the world.'”