Lauryn Hill’s Open Letter

Lauryn Hill Writes A Letter Explaining Her Sony Deal & More

Check out Lauryn Hill’s letter:

“It has been repor­ted that I signed a new record deal, and that I did this to pay taxes. Yes, I have recently entered into an agree­ment with Sony World­wide Enter­tain­ment, to launch a new label, on which my new music will be released. And yes, I am work­ing on new music.

I’ve remained silent, after an extens­ive heal­ing pro­cess. This has been a 10+ year battle, for a long time played out behind closed doors, but now in front of the pub­lic eye. This is an old con­flict between art and com­merce… free minds, and minds that are per­haps overly tethered to struc­ture. This is about inequity, and the res­ult­ing dis­en­fran­chise­ment caused by it. I’ve been fight­ing for exist­en­tial and eco­nom­ic free­dom, which means the free­dom to cre­ate and live without someone threat­en­ing, con­trolling, and/or manip­u­lat­ing the art and the artist, by tying the purse strings.

It took years for me to get out of the ‘para­sit­ic’ dynam­ic of my youth, and into a deal that bet­ter reflects my true con­tri­bu­tion as an artist, and (pur­portedly) gives me the con­trol neces­sary to cre­ate a paradigm suit­able for my needs. I have been work­ing towards this for a long time, not just because of my cur­rent leg­al situ­ation, but because I am an artist, I love to cre­ate, and I need the prop­er plat­form to do so.

The nature of my new busi­ness ven­ture, as well as the dol­lar amount repor­ted, was inac­cur­ate, only a por­tion of the over­all deal. Keep in mind, my past record­ings have sold over 50,000,000 units world­wide, earn­ing the label a tre­mend­ous amount of money (a frac­tion of which actu­ally came to me).

Only a com­pletely com­plic­ated set of traps, manip­u­la­tions, and inequit­able busi­ness arrange­ments could put someone who has accom­plished the things that I have, fin­an­cially in need of any­thing. I am one artist who finds value in openly dis­cuss­ing the dynam­ics with­in this industry that force artists to com­prom­ise or dis­tort them­selves and what they do, rather than allow­ing them to make the music that people need. There are volumes that could (and will) be said.”


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Rishma Dhaliwal

Rishma Dhaliwal

Edit­or / PR Con­sult­ant at No Bounds
Rishma Dhali­w­al has extens­ive exper­i­ence study­ing and work­ing in the music and media industry. Hav­ing writ­ten a thes­is on how Hip Hop acts as a social move­ment, she has spent years research­ing and con­nect­ing with artists who use the art form as a tool for bring­ing a voice to the voice­less. Cur­rently work­ing in TV, Rishma brings her PR and media know­ledge to I am Hip Hop and oth­er pro­jects by No Bounds.

About Rishma Dhaliwal

Rishma Dhaliwal
Rishma Dhaliwal has extensive experience studying and working in the music and media industry. Having written a thesis on how Hip Hop acts as a social movement, she has spent years researching and connecting with artists who use the art form as a tool for bringing a voice to the voiceless. Currently working in TV, Rishma brings her PR and media knowledge to I am Hip Hop and other projects by No Bounds.

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