This is a photo of an empty stage and a lonely DJ at the Lauryn Hill concert last night. She was originally scheduled to go on at 8 p.m. She didn’t grace us with her presence until 12:05 a.m.
She came out in a crazy black suit with a crooked shiny red shirt. Her opening song, Forever Loving Jah, was a raspy garbled mess. Sound was bad from the system and from her throat. She flailed her arms around like a dying pigeon. She took so many liberties with her songs that they weren’t the hits I remembered and loved; they were wild interpretations of them. I would’ve seen a better show at a tiny R&B cover bar on the Lower East Side.
At 11 p.m., the DJ desperately tried to rev up a hostile crowd that shouted for Lauryn. Then six or so little kids, some of them presumably Lauryn’s, emerged from the curtains to dance backstage. At 11:30 p.m., we saw a baby, no more than 11 months old, join the crew. Boy, I would hate to be that nanny.
Her appearance at The Wellmont, a stone’s throw from her hometown in South Orange, thankfully marked the end of her 17-date tour.
By 12:40 a.m., I gave up on Lauryn. I could only justify the $65 ticket price because I had an extra long time to catch up with good friends. But in the end, I was too fed up to enjoy the show. I left along with lots of disgruntled people. Lauryn could doo wop that thing by herself.
Here’s what the Twittosphere thought: