My World Of Flops: Miseducation case file #76: Lauryn Hill’s MTV Unplugged No. 2.0
My World Of Flops is Nathan Rabin’s survey of books, television shows, musical releases, or other forms of entertainment that were financial flops, critical failures, or lack a substantial cult following.
When Kanye West recently used the ranting-at-the-audience portion of his show to praise Donald Trump, criticize Beyoncé, and brood darkly about his relationship with Jay Z, he seemed to be channeling Lauryn Hill. In her career-killing MTV Unplugged No. 2.0 performance, Hill used the power that comes with having released one of the biggest debuts of all time to hold the studio audience hostage. She spoke, and spoke, and then spoke some more about the emotional turmoil she was experiencing and the spiritual epiphanies that ensued.
For both West and Hill, this was no mere stage banter. They set out to break through the barrier between performer and audience and communicate with the public on an unrehearsed …