Hill Unveils New Songs At Marley Tribute
Lauryn Hill performed two new songs last night (Feb. 6) at a concert to celebrate Bob Marley's 60th birthday in Ethiopia. Hill, who is married to the late Marley's son Rohan, made an unannounced appeaLauryn Hill performed two new songs last night (Feb. 6) at a concert to celebrate Bob Marley's 60th birthday in Ethiopia. Hill, who is married to the late Marley's son Rohan, made an unannounced appearance accompanied only by an acoustic guitar to perform the previously unheard "Walk" and "Politician's Spirit," plus "War in the Mind," which first appeared on her 2002 "MTV Unplugged" album.
Her set came as part of the Africa Unite concert, which was staged in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa in front of an estimated non-paying audience of more than 300,000.
Also on the line-up were five of Marley's sons, Ziggy, Stephen, Damian, Julian and Kymani. After the concert, the Bob Marley Foundation announced that it intended to make Africa Unite an annual event to be held in a different African country each year, before returning to Ethiopia in 2015 for Marley's 70th birthday. The singer's widow, Rita Marley, and his 78-year-old mother, Cedilla Booker, also performed.
"It was a very sacramental and spiritual thing for me," Julian Marley said after the show. "Our father wants us to be in Ethiopia and he wants us to be here. It was overwhelming. I can't even begin to explain the joy and energy it has given us."
As for Hill, apart from "MTV Unplugged," she has been largely silent since 1998's Grammy-winning "The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill." "I learned a lot from this trip," she said in Addis Ababa last week. "It was purposeful. I only decided to perform at the last minute. I think I underestimated the need for black people to see other black people walking in confidence and truth."
She also indicated that her long-awaited new album would have a strong spiritual and political slant. It will likely include "Walk," which deals with the oppression of African people and contains the line "Every time I faced adversity it caused me to grow."