Robert Glasper Claims Lauryn Hill Stole Music for ‘The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill’
Jazz musician and producer Robert Glasper aggressively dissed Lauryn Hill during an interview Monday (Aug. 13) on The Madd Hatta Morning Show on 97.9 in Houston. At various points in his ten-minute rant, the pianist claimed Hill steals music, disrespects her bands and doesn't know how to tune a guitar.
Glasper's comments came in response to a question about managing egotistical personalities as a producer. He went out of his way to name Hill and criticized her treatment of him during rehearsals for a gig in 2008. The pianist said the Fugee alumna frequently changed arrangements, demanded she be addressed as "Ms. Hill" and never looked at directly in the eye, and threatened to cut the band's payment in half. He eventually explained his frustration stems from his belief that Hill "stole" credit for her Grammy-winning 1998 album The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill.
"You've already stolen all of my friends' music. Miseducation was made by great musicians and producers that I know personally," Glasper said. "You got a big hand off of music you didn't even write."
Hill wrote and recorded her debut solo album, which she's currently touring in honor of its 20th anniversary, with the help of four musicians collectively known as New Ark (a name she coined), who later sued, claiming they weren't properly credited for their writing and production work. The suit settled out of court in 2001 for a reported $5 million. Hill, New Ark members and other musicians recounted Miseducation's collaborative process with Rolling Stone in 2008.
Glasper's version of the story is less complicated. "Those songs were written by other people and they did not get their credit," he said. "She likes to take credit so she can become this super person. If you're a super person, and you're that talented, do it. You feel me? She couldn't tune her guitar in rehearsal."
The producer, one-third of the group August Greene with Common and Bilal, also accused Hill of "[liking] to fire bands" and asking him to audition for her in 2006. Glasper said he refused to audition because he was "already a signed artist" and told Hill to "listen to my album."
At one point, he compared his experience with Hill to his more positive experiences with three men: Stevie Wonder, Quincy Jones and Herbie Hancock. "Lauryn Hill should be able to be cool," he said. "You haven't done enough to be the way you are. You just have not. The one thing you did that was great, you didn't do."
The full interview is below. Glasper's comments about Hill begins around the 27:00 mark.
See 60 Hip-Hop Albums Turning 20 in 2018