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Talib Kweli: Style Icon

June 6, 2011

Why He’s A Style Icon

Talib Kweli isn’t your run-of-the-mill rapper. He favors social consciousness over mainstream success. He recorded an entire album in his home and released it through free downloads. He collaborated with Norah Jones. But perhaps the kind of thought it would take to mix the folksy sounds of Norah Jones into a rap song is exactly what you should expect from a guy whose given Arabic name translates to “scholar.” Indeed, there’s thought put into everything Kweli does — including his clothing. Sure, he’s fond of typical rapper-wear: jeans, tees, hoodies, and flat-as-a-board brimmed baseball caps. But we’ve also caught Kweli after hours when he’s sporting cardigans, fedoras and Russell Simmons-ish argyle sweaters.

So, when we attended a recent Ben Sherman benefit for Lifebeat, an organization dedicated to youth HIV/AIDS prevention, that fronted Kweli, we were at once surprised (Ben doesn’t usually do denim that hangs below the ass) and unfazed. After all, managing to make a musical concoction with Norah Jones proves he’s cool with odd combos. And we also know he’s no stranger to argyle. “I like Ben Sherman because it’s comfortable and accessible. You can mix and match it to create your own personal style,” boasted Kweli. And marching to his own beat, in music, fashion, and do-gooding, is exactly why we’re counting Talib Kweli among our set of style icons.

Dress The Kweli Way

Before you go slipping on a sideways-skewed Yankees hat, take note that the Kweli style we came into contact with at the Ben Sherman shindig was more our speed: short-sleeve plaid shirt, nylon windbreaker, driver’s cap, and jeans that were slim but not skinny. The ease with which Kweli wore the clothes — as if he weren’t at a sponsored fundraiser at all, but in fact, had always been decked in Ben Sherman — caught our attention. Naturally, he gave the look a Talib twist with the jeans sitting slightly lower than they were probably meant to and pairing them with retro Nikes. Intrigued, we asked him how he arrived at his style: “I remember looking back on a photo of me…wearing a suit that was, like, two sizes too big for me. I think a lot of guys don’t know what fits.”

via Talib Kweli: Style Icon – AskMen.


From → celebrity, fashion, style

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