Wyclef Jean’s debut solo album, Wyclef Jean Presents The Carnival, is one of many classic Hip Hop albums celebrating its 25th anniversary this year — and to commemorate the milestone, the Fugees legend is putting together a special performance.
In an Instagram video posted on Tuesday (June 28), Wyclef announced he’s throwing a concert at New Orleans’ Toulouse Theatre on July 3, where he’ll perform The Carnival in its entirety alongside “some amazing guests.”
For those unable to attend in person, the event will be live streamed on Amazon Music’s Twitch channel at 9 p.m. ET.
Released on June 24, 1997, The Carnival was met with both commercial success and critical acclaim. Blending different languages and diasporic genres (Hip Hop, reggae, disco, soul, kompa), the project peaked at No. 16 on the Billboard 200 while yielding three Grammy nominations, including a Best Rap Solo Performance nod for “Gone Till November.”
The album, which has since been certified double platinum, boasted appearances fellow Fugees members Lauryn Hill and Pras, as well as The Score collaborator John Forté, legendary Cuban singer Celia Cruz and New Orleans-based R&B/soul/funk group The Neville Brothers.
“Coming from The Score, that was pretty daring,” he said. “I didn’t feel pressure at all. I just knew that I wanted to paint a piece of art. I didn’t know how it would be received, though, but I knew it felt good and I just had a vision in my head. I was like, ‘Yo, I want to paint the world as one global melting pot of music.'”
“When I experienced the critical, commercial success of The Carnival, I definitely was surprised because, I mean, this album is in over four languages and it has rhythms all over the place — and this is long before we had streaming platforms where you can go from afrobeat to reggae to disco to kompa to folk songs,” he added.
“It’s a blueprint, you know? When I listen to Drake, I listen to like Kanye, I listen to Young Thug, some of my favorite artists, Kendrick Lamar, WizKid, Burna Boy, Michael Brun, I can always hear a piece of The Carnival, for sure.”