Gina Vivinetto’s Greatest Hits

What the hell happened to Lauryn Hill?

It was ten years ago this month that Lauryn Hill released the brilliant The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill, the debut album that scored her an unprecented amount of Grammy nominations for a woman. Hill was intelligent and beautiful, poised to be pop’s next savior.

But then the former Fugee went AWOL, resurfacing only to release a sad follow-up album and perform a smattering of uneven concerts. Her much ballyhooed reunion with the Fugees came and went with her former bandmates saying out loud that Hill was troubled.

Teresa Wiltz at The Root has some theories about the nature of Hill’s problems in this piece.

Wiltz cites several issues over the past decade:
* Hill’s inability to deal with her initial fame bordered on paranoia
* Hill’s fanatical religious faith had her in the throes of a cult-like character
* Her love life – including a rocky affair with Wyclef Jean and a disastrous relationship with Rohan Marley, son of famed reggae star Bob Marley. – is too volatile for her to be productive.

Others – but not Wirtz- speculate that the problem is more simple: drugs.

Hill’s recent performance in Brooklyn had her arrive onstage two hours late and then blanking out on lyrics. Videos of the show pepper YouTube with fans leaving comments showing concern for Hill’s well being.

I’m sad about Hill’s decline. I wrote about her a lot back when I was a music critic and she released the breathtaking Miseducation. I had pretty big expectations – which I see now is enough to make someone crack: having the world expect you to save pop music.

I hope Hill will get out of all of this in one piece, not so she can make music, just so she can live a less erratic life.

Do you worry about Lauryn Hill?

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18 thoughts on “What the hell happened to Lauryn Hill?

  1. I have to start off by saying that I don’t think that Lauryn’s musical talent has declined along with her career. She is still very talented, because i continue to listen to unreleased songs that she leaks out. She is one of the very few i call my all time favorites and she has a brilliant mind. I am, though, also saddened by her actions lately and wish that she would resurface again the way she used to be. But, something tells me that we will never see the Lauryn Hill that we saw in 1998 and before with the Fugees. It is sad that she is such an amazing artist and all we are left with is memories…

  2. I never cared for that album, ‘The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill’ – I really wanted it to go away very quickly.

    • Get a life plz….U don’t have to care…but keep those comments to yourself. I know majority of persons of all races can relate and do care, because we have a great understanding about what that album is really about..so if you do not know, please do not say you do not care. Good day

  3. She is still talented, just needs to pull herself out of the 80’s

  4. lilkunta on said:

    @cafe des artiste
    U never cared 4 the PHENOMENAL cd? y?
    It is the best.

    I hope LH does come back. The music industry needs her.

  5. Mike Licht on said:

    I used her Fugees lyrics to inspire kids I tutored to write. They we amazed that Rap could actually be something more than braggadocio.

  6. aun abidi on said:

    some extremely insensitive comments from people who want a human to produce for them – and that is all.

  7. father clef on said:

    cmon…for someone who was so infatuated with the work of bob marley that they let his son impregnate them, lauryn should be well aware that as far as human beings are concerned, she has it pretty damn good. she is a wealthy, healthy, good looking girl in one of the most developed countries in the world, doing a great job she should enjoy (and if she doesn’t then she can go get a 9 to 5), who has a large number of people appreciative of her creative pursuit. columbia has spent a very, very large sum of money since miseducation to help lauryn record music, and she hasn’t managed anything. she is a spoiled, self-obsessed brat.

    i dont really care if she doesn’t “produce for (us)”. if i want modern r&b there’s outkast, cee-lo, erykah, amel larrieux, van hunt and lots of other artists who have their head screwed on properly and haven’t regressed to a mental age of 12.

  8. Lauryn is a black female, a victim of racism. No matter where what she does she is unfortunately being mistreated and has to witness her fellow black people mistreated. This ‘developed country’ locks black people up systematically and shot dead nonviolent individuals such as Fred Hampton (who was druged and killed execution style). Lauryn is a healer, and has helped me through so much and will continue to do so – towards a system of justice.

  9. Hill, I used to paste your picture on the wall of my room is as little kid…am 2xx now…i do paste your picture in my mind. Not the picture i saw now but the real you back in those dayz. I love you…if you need help, I do love to help you.

  10. LEAVE LAURYN HILL ALONE!

  11. Lauren come back! Please I need you we all need you! Like the waterfalls that exist in africa and like the reason why our chocolate skin is compatible with the sun, because you were meant to be it was never a mistake love. Like the times when our land truthfully were full of diamonds and the innocent giraffes were our neighboring pets in our paradise under the sun as soon as we stepped out in the early sweet mornings . Come back lauren! Come back our sister. We miss you! You rock and you are what’s up we know you are human just like us but above all reality you and your existance even while time has passed you have so much power girl at this time we are living in. you are great. Get up queen! Collaborate with linken park and common sense. Collacerate with allan thick and jada kiss Collaberate with fifty cent and justin timberlake. Ohhh we miss you!!!! Hurry up please! I’m talking about deep international emergency. You never left our hearts and we got your back. No man break you down! You will always be the star. Always. Its time to come back. We miss everything of you!

  12. Michelle on said:

    What ever she has to do let ger be well. So if you dont care what she does no one care if you do. So many of us care about what happen to our black sister. The Miseduction of L Hill was a sucess around the world, so as for you , hey you need to be educated on the facts. L Hill may need help but thank GOD she dont need it from the idiot who say he dont care about her and wanted her CD to go away. Why dont you try going away far far away.

  13. Michelle on said:

    Correction LET HER GET BETTER

  14. Right now, Lauryn is still in the middle of her story, trying to discover the mystery of her life, her loves, the direction it all went and why, and how she has coped and is still coping with it all. The success she has achieved has clearly taken its toll on her. The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill was a brilliantly honest tale of her life as a young 20 something woman. Until she comes out on the other side of what she is going through now, with piece of mind, it will be some time before we are blessed with another honest tale of her musical brilliance because it is still in the making.

  15. Bruce on said:

    didn’t know things has gone this bad, my adorable sis, L Hill. It pains to see how life turned out for for. Hey, Black Queen, you got verve – hit it and get right back to where you trailed off. We are waiting for you – the world is waiting for you.

  16. its just dissapointing the way she let herself go. she is hip hop royality. still love her for her musical ability.

  17. patron foxx on said:

    I still love her f%%% all da bull shyt

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