Lauryn Hill's tendency to be tardy isn't new. She was late for her Bonnaroo 2014 set, and she's been late for approximately a bajillion concerts since The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill dropped in 1998. Fans continue to pack venues to see her and make her festival sets a priority, because her genius and the resounding impact of that album alone can't be denied, let alone her brilliant work with the Fugees.
The only difference between going to see a Lauryn Hill show in 2016 vs. going to see one in 2006? People can record video of the sound being cut, the crowd getting pissed and angry concertgoers confronting her about the half-hour set she delivered instead of the two-hour gig they were promised. And they can post it on the internet immediately afterwards.
That's what happened in the hours following Hill's performance in Atlanta last night, when Hill showed up two hours late, played for approximately 30 minutes, and got cut off by the venue's curfew in the middle of a song. Twelve hours after her mic fell silent, she's trending nationally on Twitter as fans come out of the woodwork to voice their outrage and roll their eyes at those who thought she'd actually play her agreed-upon set time.
One fan confronted her about it. In the clip below, Hill seems apologetic at first, saying that her driver got lost: "I can't control that." When the fan says that he heard her sound-checking around 4 p.m. and asks her why she didn't stay there, she responds with "Because that's not how I do it." There's no reason why Hill should hang around a venue for hours when she doesn't have to. There's also no reason for the driver to take an hours-long scenic tour of Atlanta on the way back to the venue, though, so either way, this isn't good.
Don't matter if she's late Miseducation of Lauryn Hill top 5 pic.twitter.com/ht3TOcoDLa— ITSBIZKIT (@itsbizkit) May 7, 2016
Here, you can see the sound and the lights get cut:
WELP! There's a strict curfew here. They cut Lauryn Hill's sound at 11 p.m. SHARP. pic.twitter.com/0EvGpKGuhO— Jewel Wicker (@jewelwickershow) May 7, 2016
And here, you can see the internet at large freak out over her trending, assuming the worst and then diving into the meme machine.
you come back from a Lauryn Hill show and your kids are dying of old age like in Interstellar— David D. (@DavidDTSS) May 7, 2016
I wrote a paper about Lauryn Hill in the 7th grade and got points off for turning it in half a day late. I should have gotten extra credit.— jonathan frandzone (@NotAllBhas) May 7, 2016
Me anytime I see Lauryn Hill slander on the TL like she didn't give us Miseducation or The Score https://t.co/naTrWG5NyD— Matthew A. Cherry (@MatthewACherry) May 7, 2016
Lauryn Hill trending for being late to a show? That's like the sun trending for rising— Vann R. Newkirk II (@fivefifths) May 7, 2016
Honestly, I've never been to a Lauryn Hill concert but in all fairness neither have most of the people who pay for tickets to her concerts.— Father Of Draggins (@rodimusprime) May 7, 2016
Lauryn Hill tickets = 2016 pet rock— FOST (@GeorgeFoster72) May 7, 2016