True Studio Stories: Wyclef Recalls Recording With The Fugees, Lauryn Hill, And The Making Of ‘The Carnival’


Over the years, Wyclef Jean has logged some serious studio time. Indeed, his stories are epic. ‘Clef looks back at the making of The Fugees’ classic The Score and his platinum 1997 solo debut The Carnival. This is history. —Keith Murphy


The Fugees/Lauryn Hill

“Obviously, no one was paying attention to the credits on the Fugees’ The Score. It was hard to see who was the mastermind behind it because of Lauryn [Hill] being at the forefront of the group. But I planned it that way in the studio. That’s exactly how you heard it because I wanted the Fugees to be a supergroup. I wanted to make sure the music was ringing around the world. My whole goal was to get the hell up out of the projects and get my mom out of there. I’m thinking, ‘Yo, we have to hit the world stage!’

When the Fugees found success with The Score, people would be like, ‘Is Lauryn going to be on this song…is she coming to the show?’ But at the end of the day, there’s talkers and doers and there’s facts and opinions. If somebody was a mastermind in a group why can’t they keep doing what they do over and over again? How come they can’t do it with other artists? That’s how you know who was the producer of the group. So I don’t have to tell you who that was. You can figure it out yourself.

Look at every artist I worked with, Lauryn worked with and Pras worked with and you will be able to say, ‘Okay, that guy was the producer, that girl was the soul and that other guy was handling a lot of the business.’ That’s why I credit the Fugees with being a supergroup. But a few years later when I released The Carnival I threw a curveball. And that was good because the success of that album helped everybody. It even helped Lauryn. Remember when I talked about being the mastermind? What happened after The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill? There wasn’t a CD produced like that from her again.”

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