This is Lauryn Hill in Newark today arriving at court for her tax evasion trial. The federal government says she owes $1.5 million after not filing tax returns for several years. Here’s her explanation about why she didn’t bother paying taxes:
"Over-commercialization and its resulting restrictions and limitations can be very damaging and distorting to the inherent nature of the individual. I did not deliberately abandon my fans, nor did I deliberately abandon any responsibilities, but I did however put my safety, health and freedom and the freedom, safety and health of my family first over all other material concerns! I also embraced my right to resist a system intentionally opposing my right to whole and integral survival.
My intention has always been to get this situation rectified. When I was working consistently without being affected by the interferences mentioned above, I filed and paid my taxes," she wrote. "This only stopped when it was necessary to withdraw from society, in order to guarantee the safety and well-being of myself and my family."
I just want to point out that Lauryn wasn’t living in a cave during her time away from the taxes. I’m also pretty sure that she showered and used a modern toilet and was not involved in a car accident from driving around on unpaved roads with no street signs. She’s full of sh-t.
I love her.
BECAUSE she is nuts. Like straight up crazy. I wish sometimes she could hold her crazy together more effectively to perform and record but I guess that’s the point - on the occasions when her sh-t is right, it can be brilliant. Quite literally:
"I’ll be Nina Simone and defecating on your microphone."
Nina was an artist of another time and therefore of all time. I wonder if Lauryn too belongs to another era. (She should totally pay her taxes though.)
PS. If you are unfamiliar with Nina Simone’s music, please, iTunes RIGHT NOW. I promise you, it will be a discovery.