Aside from last month’s headline-grabbing performance at the Vatican, where she attacked the Catholic church, Lauryn Hill hasn’t been in the spotlight much lately. But now the singer is making herself seen and heard again — for a price.
The Grammy-winning ex-Fugee is offering fans a glimpse into what she’s been up to through a new book, song and accompanying video performance being sold on her Web site. Hill is also using the site to hawk art prints and autographed posters for up to $500 a pop.
The book is actually a poem titled “The Middle Man,” and it’s listed as coming soon for $75 per copy. A displayed excerpt of the book says, “If everyone is a product of this society, who will say the things that need to be said, and do the things that need to be done, without compromise? Truth will never start out popular in a world more concerned with marketability than righteousness. It will initially suffer ridicule and even violence — yet ultimately it is undeniable. All of humanity is living in a dream world but suffering real consequences.”
Visitors to the site can also hear and see a performance of a new Hill song called “Social Drugs.” For $15, fans can watch a clip of Hill performing the track in her studio with a guitar.
The autographed posters feature photos that appear to be recent, including a mockup of Hill on the cover of a fictional magazine called Escape. One of the cover tag lines asks, “Is She Really Crazy?”
On December 13 Hill launched into a tirade about the Catholic church’s molestation scandal during a performance at the Vatican (see “Lauryn Hill Attacks Catholic Church at Vatican” ). Otherwise, since sweeping the Grammy Awards in 1999 with The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill, she’s only been heard from a handful of times. She made a few live performances in 2001 that featured her alone with an acoustic guitar, and that summer she taped a performance for “MTV Unplugged.”