When Energies Don’t Align: The Problem With Lauryn Hill’s Apology
I was in fifth grade when The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill came out. The album was destined to be in my life. The first copy was gifted to me. And then when I left it, trying to play DJ at my school dance, one of my mother’s friends was gracious enough to buy me another copy. And I’m thankful for that because The Miseducation literally ministered to me, long after elementary school.
Sadly, that was one of the last times I was so deeply affected by Ms. Hill’s work. Whether her priorities shifted after the births of her children or the slow end of her relationship with Rohan, things changed drastically. And while my soul will always be grateful to Ms. Hill for The Miseducation, Lauryn and her message are different now. And that was cool. People change. And unlike so many other people, I wasn’t personally offended by the transformation.
When she started cancelling or showing up hours late for concerts, only to perform strange renditions of the songs we loved, I wasn’t particularly bothered because I knew better than to spend my money to see a woman who was different, whose music was different.
I could only assume that Ms. Hill was showing up late for so many concerts because, as Kanye said, her heart is not in it anymore. And that explanation was fine for me. It made sense.
But this weekend, after a fan confronted Ms. Hill for showing up 3 hours late for a concert and only performing for 30 mins, she provided another one.
Though showing up late for shows had become Hill’s modus operandi, this time she felt the need to apologize for her tardiness.
While there were quite a few people who seemed to understand the explanation about energies and even accepted the apology, most people did not.
Including the most-liked comment on the post from Jeffrey Jay Johnson,
With much respect to your explanation…I will continue to support you by requesting and playing your music from time to time but more importantly how do I get my money back for the tickets I paid for…..because the energy that poetically flows through my bank account would like to be refreshed and refilled.
I completely understand not having the energy to fulfill an obligation. Most of the things I commit to, I ultimately end up not wanting to do when the time comes. But she is the one booking these dates. I would suspect that she’s doing so months in advance. So there is plenty of time to get your energy aligned.
Furthermore, her decision to prioritize her energy over that of her fans, those who chose to spend their hard earned money on her concert tickets is insulting. I wonder did she consider what their energy would be like after standing for three hours, only to hear a 30 minute performance. And these people had it easy. Another person commented on that same Facebook post saying that they waited for Ms. Hill at New York’s famous Blue Note club, outside…in February. Freezing temperatures. And then when they finally got inside, she didn’t even say hello to the crowd, let alone apologize for being so late and making them so miserable in the process.
Then there’s the level of privilege and disconnection about this type of behavior that particularly rubs me the wrong way. If any one of us consistently showed up to our jobs 3-4 hours late, with no prior notice, those jobs would quickly choose to stop supporting us.
I’m not exactly sure of Ms. Hill’s current situation with the IRS or her financial standing, now that she’s paid them, but I’m sure her decision to take all of these performances has something to do with all of that.
Honestly, if I were a fan who was still buying tickets to see her, I would much rather an honest explanation about financial obligations and not really wanting to perform for audiences as often as she does. That makes more sense. That sounds far more plausible. And it’s less insulting to her fans and their intelligence than something about energies not aligning for the past five years.