Lauryn Hill

By: Pati Carlos 2016

LIFE BRIEF

Lauryn Hill was born on May 26, 1975 in South Orange, New Jersey. She was raised by her parents, Mal and Valerie Hill, along with her older brother, Malaney. They lived in a house in a suburban neighborhood in South Orange. Her parents always made sure Hill and her brother had what they needed. They put education first and valued music, which would soon impact Lauryn's life. Hill was very family oriented and appreciated all they did for her.

Lauryn now has 6 children, 5 from Rohan Marley. Rohan and Lauryn dated for 10 years, they never ended up getting married but split up.

BACKGROUND SYMBOLISM

The background symbolizes the people in the city that Lauryn Hill would see when she looked out her window as a young girl. "I remeber looking out this window when the sun used to shine on those buildings... I know they were full of wild people, kids stickin' each other up" (Greene 14).

They also represent the millions of people who listen and love her music. Hill was and still is a very popular artist with many admirers and fans.

3 Facts

Lauryn Hill joined a musical group at 13 years old, called Tranzlator Crew, who soon renamed themselves The Fugees. Lauren was the singer along with Prakazrel Michel and Wyclef Jean as the rappers. Hill loved being a part of the group and was starting to experience how it felt to be a singer "Her dreams of becoming a performer were slowly becoming a reality" (Greene 24).


She also juggled her school work, music, and other responsibilities and still remained her humble self. She was a part of many clubs and groups at school "She was the founder of the school's gospel choir, head cheerleader, and a member of the Martin Luther King Jr. Association" (Greene 29).



Even though Lauryn lived in a nice suburban neighborhood, from her house, she could see the projects, just a few blocks from where she lived. Lauryn wasn't frightened of the projects, she wanted to interact with the kids there. She would often visit and hang out with them "She would ride her bicycle to the tough neighborhood and play with the kids who lived there" (Greene 14).

Accomplishments

After she parted ways from the Fugees, Hill was the first female to receive five Grammy awards ever. She sang and produced her own album and it was a complete success "Her accomplishments on that one evening established a new record for the most awards won by any female artist in the history of the Grammys" (Greene 10). Lauryn also got Soul Train Awards, American Music Awards, Billboard Music Awards, and many others. Her album was named Album of the Year as well.

Struggle

The Fugees were getting ready to go on tour, her career was booming, and she got found out a surprise. She was pregnant. Deciding the keep the baby, Hill continued to perform and go on tour, hiding the pregnancy with big and loose clothing. She started getting frustrated with all the press asking who the father was. She was unmarried and dating Rohan Marley, the father, but the press didn't know "Trying desperately to keep Rohan's identity and their relationship a secret, Lauryn refused to name the father" (Greene 45). Hill felt it was none of their business. Besides the difficulty with her personal life, her professional life was a success at this point.

Mentors

Lauryn had many mentors in her life, but the most important ones were definitely her family. No matter what she wanted to do, her parents and brother supported it. Her parents were very into music, and they passed that down to Lauryn, which shaped her life greatly "At the time I didn't know it would have such an impact on Lauryn. But I always felt she would somehow, someway be involved in music" (Greene 17).

Besides the music her parents were into, they were with Lauryn through everything no matter what, even when she decided to do acting.

Hobbies and Interests

She found an interest in acting. She tried out for school musicals that led her to more opportunities. At 15, an acting agent found her from seeing a play she was in and she got a small part on the soap opera, As the World Turns. She worked 12 hours a day on set and had an on set tutor to help her with her studies. Lauryn did very well with the show and was even offered to continue with it, but her parents refused because they wanted her to focus on her studies "Lauryn's hard work on the soap paid off. The producers wanted to renew her contract for another year. Mal and Valerie believed Lauryn's education came first and said no " (Greene 30).

Awards

Hill received many awards throughout her career. In 1996, she got the MTV Award for R&B Video of the Year. She also got 5 Grammy awards just from her one album that she sang and produced herself. Lauryn was named & awarded Best Female R&B Vocal Performance and got the Outstanding New Female Artist in 1998. She received plenty more rewards as well, including "World Music Awards for Best R&B Female Artist, and Best Rap Female Artist" (Greene 62).
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Lauryn Hill with her Grammy Awards

Symbol

The old records that her mother used to listen to served as a symbol to Lauryn. She discovered them in the basement, as a young girl and started listening to them, she loved them. They were very important to her "There was something sacred about those old records, they meant a lot to me, they kind of had a lot to do with the soundtrack of my life" (Green 16).

Lauryn reminisces how those records did more than just sound nice to her ears, they symbolized how music impacted her life so much, and how it lead her to success.

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Friend Or Foe?

I definitely think I would be friends with Lauryn Hill. She is very inspiring to me and I think we would get along well. She's a humble person and is very down to earth. She is not mean or selfish, she is a truly a good woman. Not only is she extremely intelligent, but she's also wise and I could ask her for advice and for essential life quotes.

Most Like

Lauryn Hill reminds me of my sister, Carissa. They both take on multiple responsibilities at once and always accomplish them. They never quit and always try their best. Although my sister doesn't make music like Lauryn, she is in clubs at school, gets good grades, and stays humble through it all, just like Lauryn used to. My sister plays waterpolo and excels at it. She always is on the grind and is working hard just as Hill would do. She is also quite wise, like Lauryn Hill.

Egotist or Altruist

Hill is an altruist in so many ways. She constantly put others first. She was very family oriented and loved them dearly. Her humbleness was known by everyone around her and was loved my many. When she was 15, her parents let her have a birthday party, but said to only invite close friends. To their surprise, 250 people showed up, they were all friends of Hill.

With her music, she wanted to send out positivityand happy vibes for the listeners. She felt there wasn't enough of that in the world and her goal was to give out love. She influenced many people and always thought about others and how she could improve the world.

Selfies

Choice 1

I admire Lauryn's choice in how she expressed herself in her music. She never wanted to give out negativity and wanted her music to affect people who thought violence was acceptable. She wanted the music to have an impact on them, and possibly change them to become a better person "It's become popular to be stupid, to be violent, to be unintelligent, and that's bad" (Greene 38). She sent out positivity only and told her fans "expect posivity" when creating her album.

Choice 2

The Fugees named them selves "The Fugees" because Praz and Clef were refugees from Haiti and came to America when they were young. In 1997, the group even performed a benefit concert in Haiti for the people.

The Fugees had a wide variety of music, hip hop, reggae & included Haitian rhythms. Some people loved it, others disliked it, but if you ain't got no, you ain't poppin'!