“Def” has been a part of the hip-hop lexicon since the early 1980s,
but for Sean Forbes it means something different. A profoundly deaf
musician, Forbes suffered permanent hearing loss at the age of one,
yet pursued a lifelong aspiration towards a career in the music industry.
He co-founded the Deaf Professional Arts Network (D-PAN), a non-profit
organization dedicated to making music and music culture accessible to
deaf and hard of hearing audiences. To increase access to music for the
deaf community, he conceived the idea of American Sign Language (ASL)
music videos. To date, D-PAN has created ASL music videos of songs by
John Mayer, Christina Aguilera and Eminem. A 28-year-old deaf rapper
from Detroit, Forbes is making waves in the music world.
About TEDx, x = independently organized event
In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. At a TEDx event, TEDTalks video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group. These local, self-organized events are branded TEDx, where x = independently organized TED event. The TED Conference provides general guidance for the TEDx program, but individual TEDx events are self-organized.* (*Subject to certain rules and regulations)