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A Comprehensive Guide to Going to a Lauryn Hill Concert

I was gonna have this post be one word: “DON’T.” But I’m trying to change my peak petty ways in 2017. LMAOOO. No, I’m not. Lemme not even tell that lie.

Look, I love(d) Lauryn Hill and all her gifts but she is perpetually flagrant and people still hold out hope that the concert they happened to get tickets for will be the one where she transforms from the tardy caterpillar to the punctual butterfly.

That’s not how this works, though. I know this because *I* am a functioning latecomer. I can’t be on time for SHIT, the way my Nigerian DNA is set up. I’m like 15 minutes late to stuff (my BFF is reading this and saying “bullshit.” But whatever. She don’t know me when she does).

So it is a fact that our good sis Lauryn is often two hours late to her concert. TWO HOURS? Bruh. Commes des fackons. It’s like no one put it on her Google Calendar.

So for the fifty-eleventh time, fans who went to a Lauryn show are taking to social media to complain about how late she was showing up. Apparently, she didn’t take the stage in Pittsburgh til 2 hours after her publicized time. I was like “She was only 2 hours late? Shit, for her, that’s 3 hours early.”

And then I threw my head back and laughed, because there are still people in the world who expect Lauryn Noelle Hill to be on time. Join me and let’s laugh about this together.

Laugh gif

Bless people’s hearts. There are some true idealists in this world. We need them to balance us all out. We also need some of them to stop trying to fit a square peg in a circle. L-Boogie is a square, and the circle is the ability to do anything on time.


Being the humanitarian and teacher that I am, I want to help folks out. I want to keep one more person from being disappointed, by creating a guide to going to a Lauryn Hill concert. I am an expert at this topic, as I have gone to a total of ONE concert of hers, and it was in September 2016.

See what had happened was I got free tickets to her concert that she was having at the Ravinia in September. Me and bae and friends decided to make a picnic out of it, because why not? Lowkey, the way my petty is setup, I went so I could have a story to tell. I went to see HOW late she’d be, and to live-tweet it all. Which, I did. And our girl was two full hours late, taking the stage at 9:29pm, instead of 7:30pm.

I was really proud of her, as I was fully expecting to spend the night on that lawn waiting for her. Again, I am a saint, so I share my lessons with you:

A Comprehensive Guide to Going to a Lauryn Hill Concert

– Don’t spend money. Win a raffle, sweepstakes, game of Spades. Something. But don’t go shelling out your hard-earned money for a Lauryn Hill concert experience unless you don’t mind getting a full return on you investment. You will be ascend 5 levels of pissitivity, because you know what you can spend that $43.32 on? An all-you can eat buffet. Six Flags Great America. Some jeans from the GAP. Half a year of NetFlix. Something. Anything but tickets. Get them for the free.

So you get this free ticket. You must show up to the concert ready.

– Pack extra clothes. She might not get onstage for a couple of days and you wanna stay fresh. For the chance you’ll get to Instagram a picture of your faraway selfie of you and the stage and the tiny dot in the middle who you think is Lauryn. Plus, after three days of wearing the same thing, you might smell like unfulfilled potential. You need this change of clothes.

Also, in case you ever need ALPHET inspiration, all you need to do is look at Lauryn Hill’s stage clothes. You can put together at least 10 ensembles from casual to dressy with whatever she shows up wearing. Our girl is prone to rocking every piece in her wardrobe at once now. It’s really smart too because it means she packs light luggage. You will walk away from the concert inspired to pull out some clothes you forgot about.

Lauryn Hill concert

Lemme get this hat, Lauryn.

– Bring a tent. Because if you’re gonna go camping, this is an essential. It gets cool at night.

– Bring a lot of food. You gotta STAY ready so you won’t have to GET ready. Bring non-perishables and canned goods. Those won’t spoil, for the 40 days and 40 nights of waiting. This isn’t Oregon Trail and we don’t need anyone to die of dysentery awaiting Lauryn’s concert to begin.

– Sign up for webinars. Why waste time? You could bring your Rosetta Stones and DuoLingo and learn a new language as you wait. Take an eClass from your favorite online influencer on marketing. 5 days of sitting idly could be spend multitasking in this way.

– Bring your electronics. You need all your phones, your iPads, your laptops. Bring your charger, your portable charger and mophie. Don’t be caught out here with that dreaded 1% battery, really regretting your life’s decisions. STAY. READY.

– Play Miseducation of Lauryn Hill while you wait for her to show up. Why? Because when she does take the stage, you ain’t gon hear your fave jams. You #minuswell listen to them to reminisce properly beforehand because what you will hear once she starts singing are chopped and screwed versions of these songs. So chopped and so screwed that you won’t even recognize some of them.

That thing doo wop Lauryn

I want Lauryn to win.

– Go with people you love. Because the entire point of going needs to be to spend quality time with friends and family. The concert just happens to be the background music. Also, y’all will have ample time to bond, create lifelong memories and possibly start a business. If I’m gonna be somewhere for a week, it needs to be with the ones I care about. I had a good time at our picnic, where Lauryn provided soundtrack for 15 minutes before we had to get up to catch the last train that was going back into the city. Good times.

Winter came on Game of Thrones faster than the time it takes Lauryn to get onstage at her concerts. But at this point, I don’t wanna hear anyone complain about Lauryn Hill in concert. Mother Maya Angelou said “when someone shows you who they are, believe them.” Lauryn has showed us who she is but folks don’t wanna believe her.

Lauryn Hill PReach

The last huge backlash she got about being late made her take to Facebook to write a tome of excuses. Talmbout her energy needs to be “aligned” with time. It is not her fault that she can’t align herself with punctuality.

But for real. We can only give  “Miseducation” passes for so long. It’s been 18 years since it came out. Kids born the year it was released are now in college. I’ll be rooting for Miss Hill, from afar, and not in live concerts. Maybe she gon do better. Or not.

To be honest, I blame Rohan Marley for all of this. Because: Island Peen can ruin lives. We gon sing a Redemption Song for our girl, Lauryn.

Have you bought my debut book I’M JUDGING YOU: The Do-Better Manual. Haven’t ordered it yet? Now’s your chance. You’ll love it. Amazon. Barnes & Nobles. iBooks. Audible (I narrated the audiobook myself). Kobo. Books-A-Million.

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  1. Maureen
    February 4, 2017 at 8:20 pm

    And errrrrrrybody wants to give me a ration of “grow up” because I’m 44 and love One Direction. But at least they show up on time and don’t try to turn “Steal My Girl” into an acoustic jam session with the wrong lyrics.

  2. L
    February 4, 2017 at 8:40 pm

    Mannn, I was at that same Ravinia concert. We were in the parking lot waiting for the shuttle bus when she started performing. I had such high hopes because they have a cut off time. Like even Lil Wayne shows up on time to his shows at the Midwest bank amphitheater because the show has to end by 11 pm. That did not phase Ms. Hill. Time stops for her and her alone.

    • kat
      February 6, 2017 at 5:03 pm

      “We were in the parking lot waiting for the shuttle bus when she started performing”
      I am officially dead*, funniest ish I have read ALL day!!!!

    • me3
      February 7, 2017 at 3:37 pm

      I’m cryinnnnngg!! LOL!

      I’ve seen her twice. Actually both before the lateness settled in. The first concert was awesome, back in her hey day. During the 2nd, she was in the building… I literally saw her walk in… but she was 45 minutes late to the stage. Never sang any known songs and was high as a kite 5 galaxies over. The concert was free so I couldn’t complain but I refused to see her again. That was literally in 2002.

  3. Jamila
    February 4, 2017 at 8:59 pm

    Girl!! I was at Ravinia too ..I had an attitude, and I almost jumped on the metra and left my husband there all by his lonesome …NEVER AGAIN!!!

  4. blackberry molasses
    February 4, 2017 at 10:21 pm

    my fave was when she headlined at Afropunk in 2015, her ass was 45 minutes late and she was on before her royal highness Grace Jones. she still tried to do her whole set and they straight cut her mic and lights. bless her heart, she tried to keep going and they yanked her off the stage. then Grace got on there on fucking time with dancers and costume changes hula hooping while doing slave to the rhythm. we were all like “Lauryn who?”

  5. Meriam Seboka
    February 5, 2017 at 2:47 am

    I don’t know why but I gave Lauryn two WHOLE chances to get her act right. Needless to say I left the second show 10 mins in. I just couldn’t do it. The chopped and screwed + the lateness was too murch. I tried though just because Miseducation was and always will be my shit. I’m good off Lauryn now though. So so good. I’ll just bump Miseducation and watch Sister Act 2 from afar.

  6. February 5, 2017 at 4:38 pm

    This is hilarious. I’m considering her Valentine’s Day show in Atlanta. Good to know the concert will be more like a weekend getaway for myself and my boyfriend. I’ll plan for the trip accordingly ????.

  7. T
    February 5, 2017 at 5:39 pm

    Lol. I got free tickets from her manager about 4 years ago and she was indeed 2 hours late with her whole wardrobe on singing remixed versions of all her songs. I will at least give her credit for being consistent. Lol

  8. ucity88
    February 5, 2017 at 7:28 pm

    We need to pray hard and constant for Lauryn, y’all…Bill Cosby is the one that fvcked her up for realz…

  9. William
    February 6, 2017 at 1:56 am

    It shows such disrespect to an audience when a performer consistently turns up late on stage.
    It is such bad manners too, as well as being undisciplined and unreliable.

  10. Crystal
    February 6, 2017 at 6:48 am

    Why don’t they just tell Lauryn that the concert starts at 6 if it really starts at 8? This should be an accepted ruse at this point, that the concert promoters, venues, audience, etc.–basically everybody but L Boogie–is in on. (This is the same advice I give my friends when they want me to show up somewhere on time. If I have to get there at 7, tell me I need to be there by 6:30. Works like a charm.)

    • ucity88
      February 6, 2017 at 10:53 am

      We do that in my family with my numerous notoriously CPT cousins…

    • phillygirl
      February 6, 2017 at 11:22 am

      Or like any other job, tell her if she doesn’t arrive on time her pay will be docked. Can’t you put that in her contract? Performance must begin within 30 minutes of it’s posted start time. For every 30 minutes late thereafter, a 25% reduction in pay will be executed. At 2 hours, you will officially be performing for free. Show up late at your own risk, Miss L Boogie.

  11. angrynerdgirl
    February 7, 2017 at 10:36 am

    If you can think of Lauryn Hill as a drag queen, it all works out. If I’m going to a drag show that says it starts at 9 pm, I know that stage will be empty until at least 11 pm. The opening act will probably come on around 11, and my girl will be there at 1 am for her ten minute set before taking a 45 minute break to change costumes.

    In the meantime, bring plenty of booze and plenty of friends, and prepare to have a ridiculously fun evening.

  12. ReddRoanoke
    February 7, 2017 at 11:52 am

    Very sad because concert tickets are NOT CHEAP and she seems to have disregard and excuse for it instead of being humble. She counts on hardcore fans that will put up with her nonsense. Its not like she has anything new on deck so venues will stop asking her to perform when they get tired of refunds and complaints and her hardcore fans will realize she gives zero F*&Ks and so will they eventually. AND isn’t she in finacial doodie with the IR$ and have 6 chilluns to support? Now, if the tickets were cheap (like under $50) and it were a summer time open air concert (like the Jackie Robinson Jazz Fest) where I could socialize with my peeps on a blanket/ lawn chair and move around at my lezz-yure (misspelled on purpose), that’s different. Otherwise, I will call on Felicia Patron Saint of Farewells and keep my $$ in my pocket.

  13. AG
    February 7, 2017 at 12:56 pm

    I swear, I was crying off that guy’s tweet that day. Hilarious.

    I love how the wait went from hours to days as you beefed up the preparation list! HAHAHA

  14. February 8, 2017 at 2:08 pm

    i feel like someday were going to get new music for lauryn ill be patiently waiting

  15. February 10, 2017 at 10:09 pm

    This post delights me.

    I saw Lauren for the first time this summer at First Ave in Minneapolis. I had heard the stories about her being late, and we arrived around 12am (two hours after the show “started”). Of course I didn’t expect her to be on before midnight and was delighted when she took the stage. Most shows don’t feature their star act until later anyway.

    Maybe I just got lucky or Jesus loves me because she played a bunch of old jams and I got to meet her afterward (a twist of fate: all because I had to wait for two of the women I attend the show with to finish a cigarette). She was delightful and incredibly kind.

  16. Ruffin
    February 13, 2017 at 3:15 pm

    I’ll buy tickets to a Prince concert before L-Boogie sees my dollars.