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The Fugees’ Wyclef Reflects on 20th Anniversary of The Score


Credit: Ruffhouse/ColumbiaIt’s hard to believe that two decades have passed since hip-hop trio The Fugees released The Score, their second and final studio album together before disbanding in 1997. To celebrate the 20th anniversary of the album, which arrived on February 13, 1996, group member Wyclef Jean tells ABC Radio why he’s still proud of the ground-breaking album he created alongside Lauryn Hill and rapper/producer Pras Michel.

“Definitely, I mean it’s like listening to Pink Floyd‘s The Wall, like back and forth, you know, Carnival, same way, the album The Carnival,” he says referring to his 1997 debut album. “Like it don’t matter what time period we in, it’s all good stuff,” Wyclef adds of their project, which won Best Rap Album at the 1997 Grammy Awards.

The rapper believes there’s no denying that the younger generation  still appreciates the group’s legacy. Wyclef revealed what it’s like having a teenager share with him that they grew up with his music.

“It’s surreal, for me, it’s insane, because when a 16-year old kid walks up to me and they’re like, ‘Wyclef! What’s up, man listen to this, ‘Now that I escape sleep walk awake!’ And I’m like, ‘Come on man, you had to be like one when that [“Ready Or Not”] came out,'” Wyclef says with a laugh. “Or it’s funny those that don’t even know The Score and when they see me, they’re like, ‘Hey, that’s the mister ‘Hips Don’t Lie’ man!'” he says referring to his 2005 song with Shakira. “So it’s cool man, I love it all.”

Wyclef adds that fans are constantly wanting to know if there will be another project or even new music in the future.

“They don’t ask every day, just every other day, you know, and I think it’s really cool,” he says before sharing that Bono once referred to the group as the “hip-hop Beatles.” Wyclef recalls that “when the Fugees was [forming], the idea in the back of our head was I always wanted to be a band, so I was like, ‘No, we have to be like a hip-hop band, we gotta play, we gotta sing.’ Because the thing about it, when we was like singing, rapping, playing instruments, when everyone was going one side and we was on the other side.”

The hit maker concludes that he likes the idea of a reunion. “I watch great rock bands come together and kill it, so I don’t see why The Fugees can’t do that one day.”

The Score spawned their Grammy Award-winning single “Killing Me Softly” and “Ready or Not” as well as a reinterpretation of “No Woman No Cry” by Bob Marley & the Wailers.

The multi-platinum selling album also included contributions from Rah Digga, Young Zee and Pacewon as well as production from Jerry Duplessis, Salaam Remi, John Forté, Diamond D, and Shawn King.

In related news, Tinashe, SZA, and DeJ Loaf have created an a cappella remake of “Killing Me Softly With His Song,” a classic made famous by Roberta Flack and then again by Lauryn Hill.

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