Wyclef Says New Fugees Album "Definitely Going To Happen"

Many people are wondering when, or even if, the Fugees might head into the studio to begin work on the follow-up to the trio's 1996 breakthrough album, "The Score." Rumors have been circulated and denied about bad blood between Lauryn Hill, Wyclef Jean, and Pras, and all three members have been busy with various high-profile projects.

Wyclef is preparing his third annual Haitian Benefit Show in Miami for April 17; he just finished the score for the new Eddie Murphy-Martin Lawrence movie, "Life;" he's in the midst of doing a remix for Whitney Houston; and he even has plans for another solo album. Wyclef's plate may be full, but he contends that even the follow-up to his highly successful solo debut is on the backburner until the Fugees' next album is completed.

"(My next solo album) is definitely in my head, but like my heart is more like getting with the Fugees and doing like a Fugee album,"

he

told the MTV Radio Network on Wednesday. "I think if I do a Wyclef album right now it's going to be, like everything that I'm doing, more targeted towards (people saying) 'who's he talking about?'Š I think I need to do a Fugee album first. That's where my heart is at, getting back with the Fugees and just like coming up with that new millennium zone." [28.8 RealVideo]

Meanwhile, Clef's fellow Fugee, Pras, just made an appearance in an upcoming movie called "Mystery Men." In May, he will start work on "Ghetto Supastar," a film to be produced by Madonna and Guy Oseary. He also just released a book of the same name. And Lauryn Hill, who recently collected five Grammy Awards for her massively successful solo album "The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill," has a world tour booked at least until the fall.

Despite all that is going on with the Fugees individually, Wyclef told us that there is a tentative

time

frame for the recording of the new Fugees album.

"I think when Lauryn gets off her tour, word is everybody is supposed to meet up in a dark room or something and, like, work it out, you know what I'm saying. But, if it's going to happen, it's definitely going to happen in the new millennium." Wyclef also added jokingly, "Then if it ain't going to happen, I'm going to have to move on like Paul McCartney." [28.8 RealVideo]

So after all the solo projects and other experiences that Wyclef, Pras, and Lauryn have under their respective belts, what does 'Clef think the Fugees' third album might sound like?

"I think the next Fugee album has to go back to the formula, you know what I mean. The formula is just three people in the studio with (musician/producer) Jerry

Wonder just coming

up with the vibes... So it's no illusion. It's just going back in there, and the topic is already there. There's a lot to talk about, as you can see. Like people want to hear some stuff said on a record. I might just battle Lauryn Hill on one record, you know what I'm saying. Just give people what they want and clear up the bad air." [28.8 RealVideo]

According to a representative of Ruffhouse Records (the Fugees' label individually and collectively), the recording of the next Fugees LP could start as early as the fall, with a possible release in late spring/early summer 2000.