Lauryn Hill’s critically acclaimed debut album The Miseducation Of Lauryn Hill arrived two decades ago, but it’s still waves. Back in the day it gifted her a No. 1 single with “Doo Wop (That Thing).” It also took home the Grammy Award for Album Of The Year, making it the first hip-hop album to do so. In 2015, it was inducted into the National Registry by the Library Of Congress, which deemed it “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant.” Now it’s become the first album by a female rapper to earn a Diamond certification.
— RIAA (@RIAA) February 17, 2021
The Recording Industry Association Of America (RIAA) shared the news in a tweet on Tuesday that welcomed the singer to the “Diamond Club,” meaning that Hill’s debut album has officially sold 10 million or more copies. The Miseducation Of Lauryn Hill began its chart journey in the summer of 1998, selling 432,000 units right off the bat — a number that at the time broke the record for first-week sales by a female artist.
But it’s not been without controversy. Earlier this year, Hill spoke about the lack of credit she receives for the album in an email submitted for Rolling Stone’s 500 Greatest Albums podcast on Amazon Music. “I was called crazy,” she said. “Now, over a decade later, we hear this as part of the mainstream chorus. Ok, so chalk some of it up to leadership and how that works. I was clearly ahead, but you also have to acknowledge the blatant denial that went down with that. The public abuse and ostracizing while suppressing and copying what I had done, with still no real acknowledgment that all of that even happened, is a lot.”