Some of you may not know this, but I’m a HUGE Sister Act 2: Back In The Habit fan. Yes, the sequel to Whoopi Goldberg’s nun-in-hiding film is a killer urban tale of her return to the nun squad, this time to teach in a troubled San Francisco high school. One of its students is Lauryn Hill. And back in ‘93, she was pure, raw talent. Watching her is like watching a unicorn run over a rainbow – it’s a magical moment in pop history when she wasn’t popping out babies and hating white people. Anyway, there’s this:
So you could imagine a little bit of the sentimentality I carry with the song. Watching Hill sing it in SA2 is one of the most inspiring moments of the film, and hell, of the ’90s. However, Active Child has the voice of an angel and his unique blend of modern dance beats, spare electronic production and his ghostly, Godly voice always yields breathtaking results. This one’s no exception (you just gotta click on that SoundCloud link, ya heard?). Dropped yesterday, the Philadelphia Boys Choir & Chorale alum hits the nail on the head in this three-minute meditation perfect for your 2013 serenity.
Religious or not, the song’s a classic that’s been done by pop singers throughout time. It’s just as exciting to hear it come from Philly’s own Pat Grossi.
Tomorrow night’s a night that should be fascinating. We got pretty excited when Nas and Lauryn Hill announced a tag-team night at the Electric Factory last month. Naturally, it was with a tiny lil’ scoche of suspiciousness. Ms. Hill doesn’t have the best reputation these days: lateness, crazy talk, erratic performances, etc. It’s not really true for Nas mostly because he doesn’t have a track record of crazy. But together, they gave us “If I Ruled The World.”
And remember how Lauryn Hill, once upon a time, was a bright-burning talent back in the day? She made Sister Act 2: Back In The Habit one of the best damn heartwarming-nun-based-urban-music-success-story sleeper of the ’90s. Watching her sing “His Eye Is On The Sparrow” is a moment that makes us so confused: she’s friggen’ bursting with talent and looks so earnestly modest, versatile and gifted. And yet. What happened to her? That Unplugged record? Eesh. Even seeing her sing live now, it’s a little bit of a mind-eff. You want to bow before the queen of the Fugees (Fact: The Score is flawless, actually, so’s The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill) and worship at the shrine of SA2, but then she doesn’t even sing songs the way she wrote them. Seems like it happens more than we’d care to admit: singers who’ve been singing the same catalogue for years and sing all around the lyrics with ooohs and ahhhs, weird note-runs and lots of, ya know, ‘feeling it.’ Let’s hope that doesn’t happen tomorrow night.
If we get taken back to the ’90s tomorrow it’ll be like a gift from the days of MTV-playing-music-videos all day. Get a ticket, pronto.