| Music Addictions |
Jun 25 2008, 10:58 PM
Here you go:-
Lauryn Noel Hill (born May 25, 1975) is a Grammy Award-winning American singer, rapper, musician, songwriter, producer, and film actress. Early in her career, she established her reputation in the hip-hop world as the lone female member of The Fugees. On August 25, 1998 she launched her solo career with the release of the commercially successful and critically acclaimed album The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill, an album which helped to spur the neo-soul genre to a wider commercial platform. After a four year hiatus, she released MTV Unplugged No. 2.0; a live recording taped on July 21, 2001 at MTV Studios in Times Square. She has won eight Grammy Awards and is the mother of five children with Rohan Marley, the fourth son of reggae legend Bob Marley.
Lauryn Hill was born in South Orange, New Jersey. Hill was the second of two children born to high school English teacher Valerie Hill and computer programmer Mal Hill. As a child, Hill incessantly listened to her parents' Motown and 1960s soul records. Music was a central part of the Hill home. Mal Hill sang at weddings, Valerie played the piano, and Lauryn's older brother Melaney played the saxophone, guitar, drums, harmonica, violin, and piano.
Hill graduated from Columbia High School in Maplewood, New Jersey. Hill was an active student, cheerleader, and performer. She began her acting career at a young age. In 1988, 13-year old Hill appeared as an Amateur Night contestant on It's Showtime at the Apollo. Hill sang her own version of William "Smokey" Robinson's song "Who's Lovin' You?". A nervous Hill sung far away from the mic and was heckled at first; but persisted and finished her song to a standing applause, though she did not win.
Hill was childhood friends with actor Zach Braff and they both graduated from Columbia High School in 1993. Braff mentioned inviting Hill to his bar Mitzvah in 1988.
Hill appeared on the soap opera As the World Turns as Kira Johnson. In December 1993, she starred in Sister Act 2: Back in the Habit as Rita Louise Watson. In the film, she performed the songs "His Eye Is on the Sparrow" (a duet with Tanya Blount) and "Joyful, Joyful". It was in this role, as Rita, that she first came to national prominence, with Roger Ebert calling her "the girl with the big joyful voice". Although the Sister Act films were originally conceived as vehicles for comedian Whoopi Goldberg, the second installment won Hill equal notice.
Her other acting work includes the play Club XII with MC Lyte, and the motion pictures King of the Hill (as Arletta the Elevator Operator), Hav Plenty (1997), and Restaurant (1998). She appeared on the soundtrack to Conspiracy Theory in 1996 with "Can't Take My Eyes Off You" and on Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood in 2002 with the track "Selah".
Since 1996, Hill has been a in a relationship with Rohan Marley, son of the late reggae music icon Bob Marley. Though she refers to Marley as her husband, it has not been confirmed publicly that they are legally married. According to an October 2003 Rolling Stone article by Tourť, Marley never divorced his first wife Geraldine Khawly, whom the article stated he married in 1993 and had two children; daughter Eden Marley, and son Nicolas Marley. However, in the summer of 2005, Trace magazine interviewed Lauryn Hill and Rohan Marley; Marley said none of this was true and that many lies had been written about them.
Together they have four children: son Zion David Hill-Marley (August 3, 1997); daughter Selah Louise Marley (November 12, 1998); son Joshua Marley (January 2002) and son John Marley (summer 2003). As of October 2007, the couple were expecting their fifth child.
She has written a song about her eldest son, titled "To Zion", which can be found on her first solo effort, The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill. A song titled "Selah", is featured on the Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood soundtrack.[
Hill is noted as a humanitarian, and in 1996 she received an Essence Award for work which has included the 1996 founding of the Refugee Project, an outreach organization that supports a two-week overnight camp for at-risk youth, and for supporting well-building projects in Kenya and Uganda, as well as for staging a rap concert in Harlem to promote voter registration. In 1999 Hill received three awards at the 30th Annual NAACP Image Awards. In 1999 Ebony named her one of "100+ Most Influential Black Americans". She was named with Congressman Jesse Jackson, Jr. and others among the "10 For Tomorrow," in the EBONY 2000: Special Millennium Issue.
The Refugee Camp ("Fugees") formed after Prakazrel "Pras" Michel approached Hill in high school about joining a music group he was creating. Soon after, she met Pras' cousin and fellow HaÔtian immigrant, Wyclef Jean. At some point, Hill was given the nickname "L Boogie," as she began to convert her poetic writing into rap verses. Hill's singing gained worldwide acclaim with the Fugees' remake of "Killing Me Softly with His Song", accompanied by a sample from Rotary Connection's "Memory Band" (also sampled in A Tribe Called Quest's "Bonita Applebum").
The Fugees' first album, Blunted on Reality, featured the songs "Boof Baf", "Nappy Heads" and "Vocab". "Nappy Heads" peaked at #49 on the U.S. Hot 100. The album sold over 2 million copies worldwide. Blunted on Reality was followed by The Score, a multi-platinum, Grammy-winning album that established two of the three Fugees as international rap stars. Singles from The Score include "Ready or Not", "Fu-Gee-La", "No Woman, No Cry", and "Killing Me Softly" (written by Lori Lieberman and made famous by Roberta Flack).
The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill (1998)
In 1998, Hill released The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill, a commercially successful album that was also one of the most critically acclaimed releases ever. The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill sold over 423,000 copies in its first week and topped the Billboard R&B Album chart for 6 weeks. The first single off the album was "Lost Ones" (US #27) followed by "Doo Wop (That Thing)", which debuted at number one in the United States in the summer of 1998, along with singles "Ex-factor" (US #21) and "Everything Is Everything" (US #35, and " To Zion". In 1999's Grammy Awards, Hill was nominated ten times and won Album of the Year (beating Madonna's critically acclaimed album Ray of Light), Best New Artist, Best Female R&B Vocal Performance, Best R&B Song, Best R&B Album, setting new records for women in the industry.
Soon after the album became a global success, Hill and her recording company were sued by Vada Nobles, Rasheem Pugh, Johari Newton and Tejumold Newton, known as New Ark Entertainment, who claimed to have been denied full credit and compensation for their assistance on the album. Initially, Hill fought back and denied what they claimed was production input. But the matter was settled, and they received an undisclosed amount of money and were given credit for drum programming and a small amount of production work.
Despite Hill's intentional departure from the media and celebrity, she continued to create commercially and critically successful music. Her song "Mystery of Iniquity" was nominated for a Grammy without promotion or radio airplay and used as an interpolation by hip-hop mega-producer Kanye West for his single "All Falls Down" (eventually recorded by Syleena Johnson).
In the months and years after the release of her debut album, Hill became increasingly disaffected with the music industry. In the February 2006 issue of Essence magazine, Hill described this time in her life:
For two or three years I was away from all social interaction. It was a very introspective time because I had to confront my fears and master every demonic thought about inferiority, about insecurity or the fear of being black, young and gifted in this western culture. It took a considerable amount of courage, faith and risk to gain the confidence to be myself. I had to deal with folks who werenít happy about that. I was a young woman with an evolved mind who was not afraid of her beauty or her sexuality. For some people thatís uncomfortable. They didnít understand how female and strong work together. Or young and wise. Or Black and divine.
During this time, Hill stopped doing interviews, watching television and listening to music. She explored other methods of expressing herself, including creating and writing an extensive amount of music, poetry, screenplays, and clothing designs. Hill said:
I had to fight for an identity that doesnít fit in one of their boxes. Iím a whole woman. And when I canít be whole, I have a problem. By the end I was like, Iíve got to get out of here.
Short-lived return of the Fugees (2004-2007)
The Fugees performed on September 18, 2004 at Dave Chappelle's Block Party in the Bedford-Stuyvesant neighborhood of Brooklyn, New York City. They headlined a bill that included a star-studded cast of hip hop celebrities. The concert featured Hill's nearly a cappella rendition of "Killing Me Softly". The block party was recorded and directed by Michel Gondry and released on March 3, 2006, to movie theaters.
The Fugees also appeared at BET's 2005 Music Awards on June 28, 2005, where they opened the show with a 12-minute set.
One track, "Take It Easy", was leaked online and therefore was released as an internet single on September 27, 2005. It peaked at #40 on the Billboard R&B Chart. The song was not without critics, as The Village Voice wrote, "Turns out that a Fugees reunion wasn't really what anyone was waiting for; we just wanted Lauryn to start rapping again."
The Fugees embarked on a European tour from November 30, 2005 through December 20, 2005. The group played in Austria, Slovakia, Sweden, Finland, Norway, Germany, Belgium, Italy, France, England, Ireland and Switzerland.
On February 6, 2006, the Fugees did a special "Reunion Concert" in Hollywood, that was offered as a live webcast on the Verizon Wireless website. The Fugees were featured in numerous Verizon Wireless VCast advertisements in magazines and on TV around that same time. A new song titled "Foxy" was made available on VCast and a third new song was leaked, unofficially titled "Wannabe", which uses the same hook as the Michael Jackson song "I Wanna Be Where You Are".
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