We don’t expect to see a full reunion of The Fugees anytime soon (as you may recall, the trio’s 2007 attempt to re-form fizzled), but we were excited to hear about, and disappointed to have missed, the re-teaming of two of the three members on Saturday at the New York City date of the Rock the Bells festival mini-tour. Lauryn Hill was the main-stage headliner, slated to perform The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill start-to-finish (though she only played ten of the album’s thirteen songs?the first nine and then “Everything Is Everything”).
Then Pras took the stage. If this was a planned surprise, it went off perfectly: no one knew beforehand that Pras would be making an appearance. Sowmya Krishnamurthy‘s Village Voice review suggests it may have been genuinely impromptu: “‘This is how Fugees do it. They just show up!’ Hill proclaimed, clearly not thrilled.” She and Pras have had their differences over the years, but under the circumstances, what could Hill do but oblige his request and perform “Ready Or Not” and “Killing Me Softly”? Hill may not have been thrilled, but everyone else on Governor’s Island seemed to be.
If Lauryn Hill‘s most recent public behavior (remember this amazing interview?) left you worrying about her mental stability, you aren’t alone: Lauryn’s former Fugee cohort Wyclef Jean tells Rolling Stone that he thinks the diva could use some counseling. Bellows Clef:
“I felt sorry for her, because I think she needs psychiatric help. I felt like she’s bipolar. You can’t get angry with someone who’s sick…So I even called her mom, and I stressed to her, ‘Yo, you need to get her psychiatric help.’ But I think they all fear her to death. She wasn’t always like this – but if someone has the ego and you keep feeding the ego, it’s going to turn monstrous.“
While the third Fugee in the equation, Pras, has never been shy about telling the press exactly what he thinks is wrong with Lauryn, Wyclef has been at least slightly more discrete. Perhaps he’s finally given up on the dream of the Fugees reunion. Maybe he’s really concerned for his former bandmate. Or it could be that he’s just really desperate for attention, what with his new album sitting on shelves, and all. [New York Post]
The Fugees‘ reunion finally has been put out of its misery. The regrouping of hip-hop’s one-time most-loved collective has been sputtering with infrequent appearances and half-hearted promises of a new record since Lauryn Hill, Wyclef Jean and Praskicked it off during the filming of Dave Chappelle‘s Block Party in September 2004. Pras has gone on record to officially slay the slow-moving and temperamental beast that the Fugees have become:
“We went in the studio and recorded a couple records that were incredible. But, to put it nicely, it’s dead. Me and Clef, we on the same page, but Lauryn is in her zone, and I’m fed up with that s***. Here she is, blessed with a gift, with the opportunity to rock and give and she’s running on some bulls***? I’m a fan of Lauryn’s but I can’t respect that.” [Billboard.com]
You might win some, but hip-hop just lost a big one.