One of music’s most elusive acts may just have had their final encore, at least for the immediate future.
At the annual Roots Picnic in Philadelphia on June 3, headliner Lauryn Hill surprised attendees, not by showing up (although sometimes it’s a draw), but by bringing in the other members of the Fugees. Wyclef Jean and Pras Michel.
The latter was recently convicted of conspiracy and acting as an unregistered agent of a foreign government and faces up to 20 years in prison.
Taylor Hill/Getty Images for Live Nation Urban The Fugees, lr, Pras Michel, Lauryn Hill and Wyclef Jean
The legendary trio closed Hill’s set with six songs including the classics “How Many Mics”, “Ready or Not”, “Killing Me Softly” and, in the finale, “Fu-Gee-La”.
The Fugees had reunited for the first time in 16 years at a show in New York in 2021 and had planned a real reunion tour celebrating the 25th anniversary of their 1996 album. The score. They ultimately had to cancel the tour, citing complications from the COVID-19 pandemic.
The chances now of seeing Hill, Jean and Michel back on stage don’t seem so great with Michel’s very serious legal issues looming.
The rapper has been accused of funneling fugitive Malaysian businessman Jho Low’s money through straw donors to Barack Obama’s campaign in 2012, trying to prevent an investigation into the Low’s money laundering scam and trying to persuade the United States to extradite a Chinese dissident.
Michel’s high-profile case included testimony from literal star witness Leonardo DiCaprio, with Low having financed Hollywood films, including DiCaprio’s the wolf of Wall Street.
While Michel proclaims his innocence, Low has been on the run for several years. The date of Michel’s sentencing has not yet been set.