Worldwide superstar, Wyclef Jean is back at it. The Haitian native and founding member of TheFugees is releasing his first studio album in seven years. Aptly named Carnival III: Road To Clefication, the album will be released this fall via HeadsMusic and features contributions from Afrojack, EmeliSandé, and multiplatinum DJ/recording artist Avicii. In fact, Avicii is responsible for Wyclef’s new album’s title. “It’s a nickname he gave to me,” Jean explains. “We were in Stockholm recording and he said, ‘We need some ‘Clefication.’ Now when I’m in the studio with other producers from his generation, they’ll say, ‘Yo we need some ‘Clefication’ on the vocal before I swag it up.’ It’s the human application of music.”
The latest single from the album, “Hendrix”, was released today via Complex and will be available tomorrow on all digital platforms. Speaking with Complex, Wyclef says about the track, “This speaks to the neighborhood I grew up in and how it didn’t look like much. The devil, or the streets, offered drugs and cartel and I chose music. Some homies chose the NBA, or we would see people like Shaq who are from Newark and see how they made it out the danger zone.”
Wyclef is known for his wealth of musical influences from jazz to classic rock to reggae. However, after The Score from TheFugees, he resisted pressure to duplicate that characteristic sound and instead launched himself as a producer and solo artist whose work drew from elements of pop, country, folk, disco, Latin, and electronic music. As a solo artist, Wyclef Jean has released six albums that have sold nearly nine million copies worldwide, including his 1997 debut TheCarnival and 2000’s TheEcleftic: 2 Sides II a Book.
As the man who penned WhitneyHouston’s “My Love is Your Love”, Shakira’s “Hips Don’t Lie” and countless others, Wyclef Jean’s reputation precedes him. After the Croix-des-Bouquets born musician announced his campaign for the presidency of his home country, Haiti in 2010 many assumed he had switched career paths. However, Wyclef says he has never stopped making music. “Every day when I wake up, I go into the studio and record,” he says. “There’s always a guitar and a piano nearby. I’m always writing, that’s my survival. I don’t go to a therapist. My therapy is when I pick up my guitar and sing.”
Though the latest single off Carnival III: Road To Clefication tackles significant social issues, you can still count on Wyclef to bring the party. “Do I have anything for the clubs? You’re talking to The Carnival Man! I’ve done the biggest dance records of all time! We plan to put them on the dance floor more so than ever.” With exciting collabs lined up for the future featuring huge names such as DJKhaled, our only question is can anything slow this producer and artist?
Check out the video for “My Girl” and the latest single “Hendrix”. Be sure to keep an eye out for Carnival III: Road To Clefication this fall.