Of her four Rock the Bells Tour stops, Lauryn Hill hasn't had one show exactly like any of the others.
On Saturday in New York, she brought a host of celebs onstage — including Jay-Z and Beyoncé — and on Sunday, at the closer in Washington, D.C., Nas was her guest. The two performed Esco's classic "If I Ruled the World."
As for Hill's own classics from The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill and the Fugees' The Score, she constantly changed up the arrangements for the records. The legendary songstress said she needed to be free.
"There's been such a long period of time where I haven't been able to communicate where my mind is, where my consciousness is, where my ideas are," she told MTV News on Saturday. "I have to upgrade them a bit so that they're still exciting and fresh and they're new. There's something almost jazz-like the way I approach performances. I'm not sure if the audience really understands. We need, or at least I need, a certain amount of spontaneity, a certain amount of improvisation every show. I might have gotten spoiled from the Fugee days. We used to improvise a lot. It kept it so fresh and exciting. I need that. I need that improvisational, almost jazz-like improvisational dynamic when I'm onstage. It keeps it so exciting. It's that unknown, that literal X factor that makes every show something different — something unique and something I want to continue to do."
Hill said that's just where she is as an artist right now. "That's the type of mind that I have, the type of spirit I have," she said. "I need that new energy."
For the outing, Hill said it was incredible to find musicians who are fearless.
"This is an athletic discipline," she described. "You gotta be in shape to do it mentally, emotionally, spiritually, physically. But it's time. We're excited about what the future holds."