Lauryn Hill’s got a perfectly good explanation as to why she concealed her earnings for the government for awhile.
Well she thinks it’s a good excuse, anyway. The "Lost Ones" singer opened up about her recent legal troubles in a recent statement on her Tumblr, where she revealed that she never intended to keep her income a secret from the feds forever. However, she felt it was necessary to be quiet about her earnings as she detached herself from mainstream society.
"For the past several years, I have remained what others would consider underground," she wrote. "I did this in order to build a community of people, like-minded in their desire for freedom and the right to pursue their goals and lives without being manipulated and controlled by a media protected military industrial complex with a completely different agenda."
The need to set herself apart came after years of being mistreated as an artist. She also wanted to protect her family from any lifestyle that would not allow them to live freely in the way of which she approved.
"I kept my life relatively simple, even after huge successes, but it became increasingly obvious that certain indulgences and privileges were expected to come at the expense of my free soul, free mind, and therefore my health and integrity," Lauryn explained. "So I left a more mainstream and public life, in order to wean both myself, and my family, away from a lifestyle that required distortion and compromise as a means for maintaining it."
Part of this effort meant that Lauren was distancing herself from people that she felt could not be trusted as she broke free of the structured commercialization of art. Authorities believe that Lauryn earned a total of about $1.6 million from 2005 to 2007, which she didn’t report initially.
"Obviously, the danger I faced was not accepted as reasonable grounds for deferring my tax payments, as authorities, who despite being told all of this, still chose to pursue action against me, as opposed to finding an alternative solution," she said in the statement.
Lauryn also pointed out that she has paid her taxes every year since 2007 in order to make up for her previous non-payment.
"My intention has always been to get this situation rectified. When I was working consistently without being affected by the interferences mentioned above, I filed and paid my taxes," she continued. "This only stopped when it was necessary to withdraw from society, in order to guarantee the safety and well-being of myself and my family."
This rundown of Lauryn’s reasoning was folded into a larger explanation of why she’s been so sporadic about her music.
People have been waiting years for a new Lauryn Hill album, but the former Fugee feels as though her ability to create has been stifled by music industry system that, in her opinion, is all about what’s new and hot.
"I Love making art, I Love making music, these are as natural and necessary for me almost as breathing or talking," she said. "To be denied the right to pursue it according to my ability, as well as be properly acknowledged and compensated for it, in an attempt to control, is manipulation directed at my most basic rights! These forms of expression, along with others, effectively comprise my free speech!"
Lauryn added, "Defending, preserving, and protecting these rights are critically important, especially in a paradigm where veiled racism, sexism, ageism, nepotism, and deliberate economic control are still blatant realities!!!"
The "Doo Wop" singer also pointed out that her actions were in no way meant to shun her adoring fans. She makes no apologies, however, for doing what she felt was necessary to protect her family.
"I did not deliberately abandon my fans, nor did I deliberately abandon any responsibilities" Lauryn stated, "but I did however put my safety, health and freedom and the freedom, safety and health of my family first over all other material concerns! I also embraced my right to resist a system intentionally opposing my right to whole and integral survival."
To read more of Lauryn’s explanation, click here.