On the 24th February 1999, Lauryn Hill became the first female artist to win 5 Grammy awardsin one night. Her album, The Miseducation Of Lauryn Hill, raised the bar for all the hip hop female acts to come and is still regarded as a quintessential listening in modern soul Music.

In some way she was the Frank Ocean of the 90's: an undisputed talent unwilling to compromise and worth of all the waiting from fans. Unlike with Ocean though, who recently delivered the awesome Blonde "only" 4 years after the celebrated Channel Orange, the wait for Lauryn Hill's new album has now stretched beyond the impressive 17 years mark.

The musicafter "Miseducation"

An MTV Unplugged album and DVD of brand new material released in May 2002 only served as a reminder that things weren't going well in the emotional world of the still prodigious but often too-self-indulgent L-Boogie (her tag name while in the Fugees). Rumours of a new studio album called Miss Hill have been circulating ever since. Apparently, that's how she requests to be addressed by other people in her presence.

News of Hill failing to confirm offers for roles in movies such as Matrix Reloaded and Charlie's Angelsover the years (down to production times conflicting with her personal schedules), reinforced the feeling among fans that any new projectwouldn't wrap up anytime soon.

After the scandal and embarrassment surrounding her imprisonment for tax evasion in 2014, Lauryn Hillsigned a new contract to Sony musicand was expectedto release the much anticipated new effort in 2015, or so. What really came off of that so far is a couple of hard-rapping cuts randomly leaked on the web and, most notably, her solid contribution with 6 covers to the Nina Simone's tribute album.

Themusic in the vaults

Currently the "Doo-Whoop" hitmaker is touring around the world, playing the old cuts from "Miseducation" as well as hits from her period with the Fugees. The fact she plays them in almost unrecognisable versions is something that her fans complained about in depth on the social networks, but this doesn't even seem to have reached her ear at all.

Lauryn Hill nowadays lives in a bubble she created for herself: one where she is a mix between Bob Marley and a Che Guevara of music; where people are happy to suffer 3 hours of lateness at a concert and will not pay attention to the Gossip, always compelled to remember she once made a masterpiece of an album. Yet, it seems one costly bubble to live in and she is forced to keep performing to maintain it. Will the touring be enough to sustain her forever on the heels of her almost legendary status or will she need new material at some point to keep filling the arenas and not ending being relegated to some small nostalgic club? Too many times the return was announced, too many times it was withdrawn for mysterious reasons.

Whether she's touring, dealing with the justice, having another child or heavily studying the bible; it's never been the right moment to focus on the follow up to "Miseducation".

The musicthat will (not?) come

Not all seems to be lost, though. According to her long time partner Rohan Marley "she writes music in the bathroom, on toilet paper, on the wall. She writes it in the mirror if the mirror smokes up. She writes constantly. This woman does not sleep”.

More recently in October 2015, producer Phil Nicolo revealed that a new album was “closer than ever to finishing”.Ten months later, rather unsurprisingly and in typical Lauryn Hill's fashion, we're still waiting for an update.