Lauryn Hill is not apologising for her concert tardiness, despite fan complaints.
The 48-year-old American rapper and singer-songwriter – who recently embarked on her tour in celebration of the 25th anniversary of her seminal 1998 album, The Miseducation Lauryn Hill – has built a reputation among concertgoers for starting her live shows late.
Her most recent Los Angeles show at the Kia Forum on Saturday (4 November) was no exception. Joined on stage by her four children and her mother, Valerie, Hill addressed her lateness.
“You’re saying, ‘She’s late, she’s late a lot.’ Yo, y’all lucky I make it on this stage every night!” she told the crowd.
Met with uproarious applause and cheers, Hill continued: “I don’t do it because they let me do it, I do it because I stand here in the name of God! God is the one who allows me to do it! Who surrounded me with family and community when there was no support, when the album sold so many records, and no one showed up and said, ‘Hey would you like to make another one?’
“So I went around the world and played the same album over and over... and over again. Because we are the survivors, and we are not only the survivors, we are the thrivers,” she said.
Lauryn Hill addresses her “lateness”
“Yo, y’all lucky I make it on this stage every night!” pic.twitter.com/ieulUzn8Bp
— mya. (@myabriabe) November 5, 2023
She praised her mother as her “rock”, “stability” and “foundation”, who was among the “strong women” who helped raise her children while she pursued her music career.
The Grammy-winning artist’s Los Angeles concert also saw the reunion of the Fugees, the hip-hop trio Hill formed with Wyclef Jean and Pras Michel in the early Nineties.
Michel is currently awaiting sentencing after being convicted on charges of conspiracy, witness tampering, and failing to register as an agent of China earlier this year.
Last week, Hill postponed her Fort Worth, Texas show, citing doctors orders. “As you may know, I’ve been doing my best to overcome a serious case of vocal strain/injury over the past week or so,” she wrote on Instagram.
“I found through the last couple of shows, pushing my voice, and maskin the injury with medication. This isn’t safe or sustainable,” she said.
“I woke up this morning hoping to have enough voice to get through tonight, but I can barely talk let alone sing or rap,” she added. “I need to heal and rest the voice in order to continue the tour. For these reasons, sadly, my doctors have advised me to postpone tonight’s show.”
Hill rose to prominence as the frontwoman of the Fugees. She later found success as a solo artist with the release of her 16-track debut record, The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill.