Singer Lauryn Hill comeback gets off to rocky start in London

Mon Sep 22, 2014 4:28pm EDT
 
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By Matilda Egere-Cooper

LONDON (Reuters) - Lauryn Hill's five shows in Britain this month were billed as a rare treat for fans of the elusive singer-songwriter, coming less than a year after she was released from U.S. federal prison where she served three months for tax evasion.

But a late start, angry tweets and poor reviews marred her first sell-out gig at the Brixton Academy in London.

The 39-year-old singer, famous for her 1998 album "The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill", arrived on stage with a five-piece band and three backing singers at 9:58 p.m. on Saturday.

The show, with tickets selling for 55 pounds ($90), had been advertised to start at 9 p.m., with doors opening at 7 p.m.

Management of the 4,900-seater venue took to Twitter a few minutes before her arrival to apologize to disgruntled fans, some of whom had started booing before her arrival.

"We apologize for the delay which is out of our control," read a statement on Twitter. "Lauryn Hill will be on stage very soon."

When she arrived, Hill spent 80 minutes performing a combination of re-worked hits from her debut album, the only solo studio album she has made, and delving into pop and rock territory.

Songs from "The Score", another award-winning album Hill recorded as part of the Fugees in 1996, were left largely untouched, along with a number of tracks from her 2002 MTV Unplugged 2.0 album.   Continued...

 
Singer Lauryn Hill performs during Amnesty International's "Bringing Human Rights Home" concert in the Brooklyn borough of New York February 5, 2014. REUTERS/Carlo Allegri