Wyclef Jean Drops Priceless Gems On The 20th Anniversary Of The Fugees' 'The Score'
In 1996, the music industry remained under the lyrical spell of three artists from the East Coast who sought to change the way we consume music globally. The Fugees dropped their final joint album, The Score, to critical-acclaim, which boasted the replay-worthy singles like "Ready Or Not," "Killing Me Softly," and "Fu-Gee-La."
In an interview with VIBE, Wyclef Jean spoke on the classic project, and said it would still have the same impact if it were released today as it did 20 years ago.
"I just think it's like a good book, like if The Alchemist were to come out now, or it came out then," he said. "So you have what’s called music, right? And then beyond music you have a feeling, right? So albums that last are the things that make you feel something. Stevie Wonder, it doesn’t matter the era, it makes us feel something; Marvin Gaye — The Fugees makes us feel something. It doesn’t matter the era, because it’s all just music."
Here, Wyclef lists four revealing facts about one of Hip-Hop's most revered albums, giving fans an intimate look at how the project came to be:
1) The Fugees Were More Focused On Starting A Movement Rather Than Creating Music
"When we went in to do The Score it wasn’t like to do music. We were in the neighborhood and we wanted to create a movement. And I wanted the movement to any kid that felt like they wanted a sense of belonging — anybody, we wanted to create a CD for you. Similar like Pink Floyd's The Wall, it don’t matter what era. Two thousand years from now The Score is still going to be The Score."
2) "Killing Me Softly" & "Ready Or Not" Came As A Surprise To Wyclef Jean When They Became Singles
"Killing Me Softly” we didn’t think that wasn’t going to be no single. We more thought like “Fu-Gee-La.” We didn’t even think like “Ready Or Not." So don’t let the people that are creating music, the actual musicians that are geniuses in creating the art, don’t have us pick the singles, we are terrible. We just know how to create this body of work."
3) The Score Was Created With Little To No Equipment
"I don’t think people pay attention; the idea that the fact that the entire CD was created in the hood. It was created actually with no equipment. There was a lot of emotion going on. I think when Lauryn did the vocals to “Ready Or Not" I don’t think we were having a good day that day. I think she was crying a little bit. And that is the tape I ended up keeping, and using vocally. We're in a Brooklyn basement so imagine I’m cooking a beat, and a rat is just passing by your feet."
4) Akon Was Actually On The Remix To "Fu-Gee-La"
"Yeah, Akon was on the remix to "Fu-Gee-La." So I had to build a basement, man so many people passed through my basement — half of the industry, but this was before we blew up. Akon, I saw so much potential in him. When I was doing "Fu-Gee-La," I was like, 'Yo, we have to put on this kid. He is ill.’ When you hear "Fu-Gee-La" the Reggae version, you’re going to hear somebody say, ‘Call Mister Martin, tell him to build a coffin.’ It sounds like me, but it’s Akon. It’s like little Akon."