In my musical collection, there is no greater album than “The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill.” From her classic breakout hits like “Doo Wop (That Thing)” and (the song that never fails to bring me to tears) “Ex-Factor,” to the soulful tracks like “When it Hurts so Bad,” the album is one of the few that I can play in its entirety without having to skip a beat. It’s safe to say Hill is one of my favorite singers of all time and her talent is something that is out of this world.
I wasn’t the only one who thought the album was one of the most soulful and greatest. It won her multiple awards, including five Grammys. Legions of fans praised the artist for creating possibly the greatest neo-soul album of all time. We all, myself included, thought we would get some amazing material from her in years to come… but we wrong.
After the “Miseducation” album, she released an acoustic album for MTV’s Unplugged series, which had some pretty emotional songs, but nothing that came close to “Miseducation,” even though her track, “Peace of Mind,” was groundbreaking.
After that, she popped out six kids with Rohan Marley, son of Bob Marley, and kind of lost her marbles. She was allegedly quoted as saying that she would rather have her kids starve than have white people listen to her music, and at concerts she showed up looking ridiculous, giving horrible performances and preaching crazy things that made fans of the old Lauryn Hill run out of her shows.
The latest nutty remarks, from her single “Neurotic Society (Compulsory Mix),” are where she makes statements that for the first time really broke my heart. Her anti-gay lyrics blame drag queens and “girl men” for the negativity in our society.
I will admit that as a Latina I wasn’t as offended, although I thought it was a disgusting remark, by her racist comments and still attended various concerts over the years, despite mixed reviews on the sometimes not always there Hill. But the anti-gay comments really just put her in a Lindsay Lohan and Amanda Bynes category for me.
No matter how brilliant this woman is and how much I admire her work, I can’t support any of her current music as long as it blames the LGBT community for why society is flailing.
I will continue to play the 90’s music from Hill that made me fall in love with hip-hop and shaped how I see love, a poetic and passionate thing I can relate to with dope beats and smooth lyrics. But she has gone off the deep end, and if this scandal of being punished for not paying taxes won’t pull her back to sanity, I hope that some kind of mental breakthrough will.