Wyclef Jean, Haitian-born rapper, musician, and actor is undoubtedly one of the most celebrated musicians who has ever lived. He has not only impacted his generation, but he has helped bridge the gaps within the Pan-African community, advocating for unity, integration, and collaboration, particularly in arts and entertainment.
Born October 17, 1969, in the peaceful town of Croix-des-Bouquets, Haiti, Wyclef’s fame soared after forming legendary hip-hop group The Fugees in the ’90s. Ranked among the 10 greatest hip-hop groups of all time by MTV, their second album “The Score” achieved tremendous commercial success all over the world, topping charts in the US, Canada, France, Germany, Australia, Sweden, and several other countries.
Since his early beginnings with The Fugees, Wyclef has amassed an impressive catalogue of hits such as “Gone till November”, “911,” and “Sweetest Girl.” He has gone on to produce award-winning hits for artists as Shakira, Carlos Santana, Whitney Houston, and countless more.
Being selected for this Pioneer Award is a beautiful thing. I never truly know what my impact on music really is because I never stop learning and I set new goals constantly. Thank you, Face2Face Africa for recognizing my journey and my constant quest to bring something impactful to the World, both through my music and through my life work- Wyclef Jean.
In 2014, Wyclef collaborated with Carlos Santana, Avicii, and Alexandre Pires to release their 2014 FIFA World Cup official anthem “Dar Um Jeito.” That same year, he partnered with Coca-Cola’s Red campaign to release his single “Divine Sorrow,” also featuring Avicii.
More recently, Wyclef has worked with DJ Xenia Ghali on her 2015 release “Get Dirty” and created his upcoming single “Rich Girl” with Pusha T. Signed to New York City-based independent label Heads Music, Wyclef is currently working on his 7th studio album “Carnival III,” which is due to drop later this year.
Altogether, Wyclef Jean has sold over 100 million albums and 20 million singles worldwide, with three Grammy Awards to his name.
Outside of the music industry, he runs the Wyclef Jean Foundation, a charitable organisation that has helped thousands by donating funds to orphanages, hospitals and medical clinics; providing meals; and offering other forms of assistance, especially to the downtrodden in Haiti.
In 2011, Haiti’s President Michel Martelly awarded Wyclef the National Order of Honour and Merit to the rank of Grand Officer for his dedication to the promotion of Haiti all over the world.
Wyclef will be honored at the 2016 FACE List Awards Gala on Saturday, July 9, at ESPACE Ballroom in New York. Click Here for Tickets.