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Easily one of the most important personalities in hip-hop music, Wyclef Jean was born in Haiti and moved to the US at the age of 10. He first entered the spotlight in 1993 with the release of the Fugees debut album, Blunted On Reality. The group's name was inspired by the plight of refugees from Haiti and other members included rapper/actress Lauryn Hill, and Clefs cousin Prakazrel Pras Michel. 1996's The Score was a huge success selling over 6 million copies and earning 2 Grammy Awards for Best R&B Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocal (Killing Me Softly) and Best Rap Album.
In 1997 Wyclef released his first solo album, The Carnival, which went platinum with help from steady radio-play and massive MTV rotation for the single Gone Til No-vember. During his acceptance speech for the MTV Music Video Award for Best R&B Video, Wyclef negatively spoke about the movie How Stella Got Her Groove Back (for which he a contributed a song on the soundtrack): "I was saddened and offended to see my country (Haiti) used as a brunt of an AIDS joke in the movie... AIDS is a crisis and not a... comedy."
His second CD Ecleftic: 2 Sides II a Book went gold.
He has also produced hits for other artists including Whitney Houston's smash hit My Love and Carlos Santana's Maria Maria. His production company, Fugee Camp, features upcoming new artists such as his brother and sister who perform as Melky Sedeck. An enigmatic performer, Wyclef plays several instruments on stage while rapping in English, Creole, Spanish and even Japanese. His foundation, The Wyclef Jean Foundation, promotes musical education among kids.
In an interview with Kompa Magazine, when asked if he considered himself to be more Haitian or American, he replied "I'm 100% Haitian. I'm proud to be Haitian. I still have my Haitian passport. I represent Haiti in everything that I do. Every head in the industry knows that I'm Haitian. They know what I'm about. I was Haitian first. Haiti till I die!"