Wyclef Jean

Album cover of 2000's The Ecleftic

Wyclef Jean (born October 17, 1972) is a Haitian-born rapper, producer and former member of the superstar hip hop trio The Fugees, known now for a series of high-profile hit singles.

Born in Croix-des-Bouquets, Haiti, Jean moved to Brooklyn when he was nine, then to New Jersey, where he began playing the guitar and studying jazz in high school. In 1987, Jean, his cousin Prakazrel Michel (Pras) and his classmate, Lauryn Hill, formed a group called the Tranzlator Crew before becoming The Fugees. Wyclef worked as a cabdriver.

The Fugees signed to Ruffhouse Records and released their debut, Blunted on Reality, but the album was panned and sold poorly. Their eclectic follow-up, The Score, however, sold over 17 million copies worldwide and turned the trio into international superstars. Jean soon announced plans to begin a solo career with 1997's Wyclef Jean Presents the Carnival Featuring the Refugee All-Stars (more typically called simply The Carnival). The album's guests included Hill and Pras along with Jean's siblings, the I Threes (back-up vocals for Bob Marley), Neville Brothers and Celia Cruz. The album was a major hit, as were two singles: "We Trying to Stay Alive" (adapted from The Bee Gees' "Stayin' Alive") and "Gone Til November" (recorded with the New York Philharmonic Orchestra).

Jean went on to work with artists including Santana, Tevin Campbell, Cypress Hill, Bounty Killer, Whitney Houston, Destiny's Child, Sublime, Simply Red, Mya, Sinéad O'Connor, Kimberly Scott, Mick Jagger, Canibus, The Black Eyed Peas and Eric Benét. The Fugees remained in limbo during this time, with the follow-up to The Score being continually postponed as all three members cultivated solo careers. Jean's second solo album was The Ecleftic: 2 Sides II a Book, recorded with guests Youssou N'Dour, Earth, Wind & Fire, Kenny Rogers, The Rock and Mary J. Blige. The critical reception was mixed, with many calling the album scattershot and too far-ranging to be cohesive.

Jean's third album, Masquerade, was released in 2002 and sold well, though critics frequently panned it.

His fourth album was The Preacher's Son, an album that Wyclef considered a continuation of his first album, Carnival.

In 2004, he released his fifth album, entitled Sak Pasé Presents: Welcome to Haiti (Creole 101) (released in the United States by Koch Records). A freewheeling album that is something of a return to his Caribbean roots, most of the songs on the album are in his native language of Haitian Creole or Kreyòl.

In 2005, Jean earned a Golden Globe for his track entitled "Million Voices" featured on the soundtrack to the film Hotel Rwanda.


Discography

  • 1997 Wyclef Jean Presents The Carnival Featuring the Refugee All-Stars
  • 2000 The Ecleftic: 2 Sides II a Book
  • 2002 Masquerade
  • 2003 The Preacher's Son
  • 2004 Sak Pasé Presents: Creole 101 (Welcome to Haiti)

Links

  • Official Website (http://www.wyclef.com)
  • Sak Pase Records Website (http://www.sakpaserecords.net)
  • J Records Website (http://www.jrecords.com)
  • Clef Records Website (http://www.clefrecords.com)

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. The word tympany is an old-fashioned one meaning, "swollen, inflated, puffed-up", etymologically related to timpani, or "kettle drum", but historically separate. In 2005, Jean earned a Golden Globe for his track entitled "Million Voices" featured on the soundtrack to the film Hotel Rwanda. The Broadway show, Five Guys Named Moe was devoted to Jordan's music. A freewheeling album that is something of a return to his Caribbean roots, most of the songs on the album are in his native language of Haitian Creole or Kreyòl. Jordan died in Los Angeles, California. In 2004, he released his fifth album, entitled Sak Pasé Presents: Welcome to Haiti (Creole 101) (released in the United States by Koch Records). After this, however, Jordan's popularity waned and he recorded only for a small following of enthusiasts.

His fourth album was The Preacher's Son, an album that Wyclef considered a continuation of his first album, Carnival. At Mercury Records, Jordan managed to update his sound and released more hits, including "Let the Good Times Roll" and "Salt Pork, West Virginia". Jean's third album, Masquerade, was released in 2002 and sold well, though critics frequently panned it. By the mid 1950s, Jordan's records were not selling as well as they used to and he began switching labels. The critical reception was mixed, with many calling the album scattershot and too far-ranging to be cohesive. One of Jordan's biggest fans was Chuck Berry, who modelled his musical approach on Jordan's, changing the text from black life to teenage life. Blige. Jordan's recordings celebrated African American urban life and were infused with good humor and energy that had a great influence on the development of rock and roll; his music was popular with both blacks and whites.

Jean's second solo album was The Ecleftic: 2 Sides II a Book, recorded with guests Youssou N'Dour, Earth, Wind & Fire, Kenny Rogers, The Rock and Mary J. His biggest hit was "Caldonia", with its energetic punchline, banged out by the whole band, "Caldonia! Caldonia! What makes your big head so hard?" After Jordan's success with it, the song was also recorded by Woody Herman in a famous modern arrangement, including a unison chorus by five trumpets. The Fugees remained in limbo during this time, with the follow-up to The Score being continually postponed as all three members cultivated solo careers. In the 1940s, Jordan released dozens of hit songs including "Saturday Night Fish Fry" (one of many contenders for the title of "First rock and roll record"), "Blue Light Boogie", "Ain't Nobody Here but Us Chickens", "Is You Is or Is You Ain't My Baby?", "Ain't That Just Like a Woman", and the multi-million seller "Choo Choo Ch'Boogie". Jean went on to work with artists including Santana, Tevin Campbell, Cypress Hill, Bounty Killer, Whitney Houston, Destiny's Child, Sublime, Simply Red, Mya, Sinéad O'Connor, Kimberly Scott, Mick Jagger, Canibus, The Black Eyed Peas and Eric Benét. The band's sound was similar to that of Fats Waller and his rhythm, but louder, with more pronounced rhythm, and that touch of the Caribbean sound commonly called "the Spanish tinge". The album was a major hit, as were two singles: "We Trying to Stay Alive" (adapted from The Bee Gees' "Stayin' Alive") and "Gone Til November" (recorded with the New York Philharmonic Orchestra). Jordan played alto sax and sang.

The album's guests included Hill and Pras along with Jean's siblings, the I Threes (back-up vocals for Bob Marley), Neville Brothers and Celia Cruz. Though this was recorded with The Elks Rendezvous Band, Jordan would go on to play with His Tympany Five, which eventually included Bill Jennings and Carl Hogan on guitar, Wild Bill Davis and Bill Doggett on piano, Chris Columbus on drums and Dallas Bartley on bass. Jean soon announced plans to begin a solo career with 1997's Wyclef Jean Presents the Carnival Featuring the Refugee All-Stars (more typically called simply The Carnival). In 1932, Jordan began performing with Chick Webb and Clarence Williams, recording "Honey in the Bee Ball" for Decca Records in 1938. Their eclectic follow-up, The Score, however, sold over 17 million copies worldwide and turned the trio into international superstars. Alto saxophone became his main instrument-- although Jordan became even better known as a vocalist with his ebullient personality. The Fugees signed to Ruffhouse Records and released their debut, Blunted on Reality, but the album was panned and sold poorly. Jordan started out on clarinet, and also played piano professionally early in his career.

In 1987, Jean, his cousin Prakazrel Michel (Pras) and his classmate, Lauryn Hill, formed a group called the Tranzlator Crew before becoming The Fugees. Wyclef worked as a cabdriver. Louis Jordan was born in Brinkley, Arkansas; his father was a local music teacher and bandleader. Born in Croix-des-Bouquets, Haiti, Jean moved to Brooklyn when he was nine, then to New Jersey, where he began playing the guitar and studying jazz in high school. Louis Jordan (July 8, 1908 - February 4, 1975) was an African-American jazz and rhythm & blues musician, and one of the few such to sell well to mainstream audiences in the post swing music era. Wyclef Jean (born October 17, 1972) is a Haitian-born rapper, producer and former member of the superstar hip hop trio The Fugees, known now for a series of high-profile hit singles. Download sample of "Caldonia". Clef Records Website (http://www.clefrecords.com).

J Records Website (http://www.jrecords.com). Sak Pase Records Website (http://www.sakpaserecords.net). Official Website (http://www.wyclef.com). 2004 Sak Pasé Presents: Creole 101 (Welcome to Haiti).

2003 The Preacher's Son. 2002 Masquerade. 2000 The Ecleftic: 2 Sides II a Book. 1997 Wyclef Jean Presents The Carnival Featuring the Refugee All-Stars.

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