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Apple Music named its top 10 albums of all time and it focused entirely on popular music. While some older records showed up on the list, the top spot was taken by Lauryn Hill’s The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill. Hill herself reacted to this ranking.

Lauryn Hill wouldn’t have made Apple Music’s top 10 albums without ‘sacrifice’

In 2024, Apple Music named The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill the greatest album ever. It beat out several other classics. The rest of the top 10 were, in ascending order, Beyoncé’s Lemonade, Nirvana’s Nevermind, Amy Winehouse’s Back to Black, Kendrick Lamar’s Good Kid, M.A.A.D City, Stevie Wonder’s Songs in the Key of Life, Frank Ocean’s Blonde, Prince and the Revolution’s Purple Rain, The Beatles’ Abbey Road, and Michael Jackson’s Thriller. Though some critics may take issue with the fact that the list is dominated by recent albums, it’s undeniable that each of these choices are incredible and influential.

Hill reacted to The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill receiving so much praise. “This is my award, but it’s a rich, deep narrative, and involves so many people, and so much sacrifice, and so much time, and so much collective love,” the former Fugees singer said. While Hill was a major creative force behind the record, she didn’t create it alone. The Roots’ James Poyser and future Kanye West producer Che Pop helped craft The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill.

Critics reacted to the album making Apple Music’s top 10 albums

Singer Maggie Rogers discussed the magic behind the record. “Lauryn brought everybody with her on this record,” Rogers said. “She brought her community. She brought her friends and her family. You’re in the kitchen; you’re in the living room with her. You hear people; you hear the voices talking. It’s so open and so expansive and so direct. To have an artist like Lauryn Hill be the No. 1, that means a lot.”

Radio host Zane Lowe discussed his feelings regarding The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill. “This album doesn’t just resonate with the people who were around when it came out and who hold it dear,” he opined. “It has not dated, not even a fraction. In fact, it feels more fresh and more relevant the more you listen to it. There are a lot of young artists hearing it, and it’s becoming part of their artistic DNA. It’s inspiring and influencing them. It’s timeless.”


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How ‘The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill’ inspired Lizzo

Is The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill, in fact, influential? Well, it inspired one of the biggest breakout stars of the 2010s: Lizzo. During a 2018 interview with Billboard, the “Truth Hurts” star said “Doo Wop (That Thing)” from The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill inspired her to become both a rapper and a singer. Prior to hearing that tune, Lizzo didn’t think being a singer and a rapper at the same time was possible. 

With that in mind, it’s easy to see The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill as the template for other artists who rapped and sang, including Drake, Kanye West, and Nicki Minaj. The legacy of the record is huge and its critical standing has only grown over time.

Whether you consider The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill the best album ever or not, its brilliance is undeniable.