Lauryn Hill’s ‘The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill’ Added to Library of Congress
Lauryn Hill's solo studio album, The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill, is regarded as one of the best projects of the last 20 years, regardless of genre. The hip-hop community isn't the only group of people who are fans of the effort, according to the Library of Congress' recent addition to its catalog.
Known as the oldest federal cultural institution in the U.S., the Library of Congress holds many works of art, including books, movies, paintings and everything in between. Now an album as cherished as The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill has been added to the permanent collection. This is a pretty big deal.
In order for an album to be included into the archive, a decade must have passed since its release and must include “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant,” according to a statement released by the Library of Congress. The institution explained why it felt that The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill was worthy of inclusion and what factors led to their decision.
“Lauryn Hill’s debut solo record, following the breakup of the Fugees, is a work of honesty in which Hill explores her feelings on topics that included the deep wonder of pregnancy, the pitfalls of modern relationships and the experience of the sacred. The album effortlessly fuses soul, rhythm and blues, rap and reggae. Hill’s vocal range, smooth clear highs and vibrato are stunning. The rapping is rhythmically compelling while always retaining, and frequently exploiting, the natural cadences of conversational speech. Standout guest performances include Carlos Santana’s soulful acoustic guitar solo on ‘Zion,’ and duets with Mary J. Blige and D’Angelo on ‘I Used to Love Him’ and ‘Nothing Even Matters,’ respectively.”
The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill was released in 1998 to much fanfare, debuting at No. 1 on the Billboard charts and selling over 422,000 units in its first week. The album was a critical and commercial success, garnering Hill five Grammys, including the Album of the Year award. The effort went on to sell over 10 million copies worldwide. Featuring hit singles like "Doo Wop (That Thing)," "Ex-Factor" and "Everything Is Everything," as well as timeless album cuts like "Lost Ones" and the D'Angelo collaboration "Nothing Even Matters," The Miseducation was one of the most celebrated in hip-hop history and remains respected as a true masterpiece.
Other notable albums that made the list include The Doors' self-titled album, Stand! by Sly and the Family Stone, A Wild and Crazy Guy by Steve Martin, Sesame Street: All-Time Platinum Favorites and OK Computer by Radiohead.
Now, if we could only sneak Public Enemy It Takes A Nation of Millions or N.W.A.'s Straight Outta Compton in, then we'll really be talking.
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