When MF Doom paid an impersonator to perform his shows
(Credit: Kmeron)

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When MF Doom paid an impersonator to perform his shows

The late Long Island emcee, MF Doom, was an exciting and enthralling entertainer. The mysticism surrounding the man behind the mask captured fans and other musicians alike, and since his arrival on the scene in 1999 with Operation: Doomsday, he has created a fascinating alter-ego. 

In 2009, Mos Def, a fellow New Yorker, uploaded a video of himself in the studio rapping the lyrics of an MF Doom song acapella with stunning accuracy. The footage soon began to circulate, and shortly after Doom got wind of the video, he announced a joint tour with the ‘Mathematics’ lyricist. 

The tour was a short one and would only include three dates: a show in Toronto, one in Chicago and a final pit stop in New York. The ordinarily tight-lipped MF Doom even granted an interview to Toronto’s Eye Weekly. The tour even had a Toronto-specific illustrated poster made by artist Kagan McLeod.

The tour was meant to kick off in Toronto. However, after a last-minute postponement, the tour began in Chicago instead. However, fans felt like they weren’t seeing their favourite artist when a masked man took to the stage.

Mos Def performed as planned, dropping a few Doom verses in his own set. However, when Doom played, people were suspicious the masked man’s delivery was too precise, and the masked figure didn’t look anything like the pictures.

The following day, it was unveiled that the figure on stage was a body double and wasn’t Doom (real name Daniel Dumile). The venue confirmed it, and in an interview, the rapper admitted it, stating, “I liken it to this. I’m a director as well as a writer. I choose different characters. I choose their direction and where I want to put them. So, who I choose to put as the character is up to me, the character that I hired, he got paid for it.”

It is thought Dumile has pulled such stunts on more than one occasion. In 2004, at the Kool Haus nightclub in Toronto, while MF Doom was in his dressing room, a rapper in an orange jacket, a hat and Doom’s iconic metal-face mask came out to rap ‘Accordion.’

Following this, a fan screamed, “That’s not fucking DOOM! Get the fuck off the fucking stage!” Following this, the real MF Doom ran on stage to save the day. You can see the 2004 footage from the Kool Haus in the video below.