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Carnival, Vol. 2: Memoirs of an Immigrant [Deluxe Edition]
     

Carnival, Vol. 2: Memoirs of an Immigrant [Deluxe Edition]

by Wyclef Jean
 

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Ten years after his 1997 solo debut, The Carnival, former Fugee, "Hips Don't Lie" producer, and globetrotting activist Wyclef Jean presents the sequel, subtitled Memoirs of an Immigrant and meaning it. There's a star-studded guest list, but Carnival, Vol. 2 is composed from Wyclef's personal experience and filled with his

Overview

Ten years after his 1997 solo debut, The Carnival, former Fugee, "Hips Don't Lie" producer, and globetrotting activist Wyclef Jean presents the sequel, subtitled Memoirs of an Immigrant and meaning it. There's a star-studded guest list, but Carnival, Vol. 2 is composed from Wyclef's personal experience and filled with his commentary on 2007's immigration crisis. He even works his own green-card story into "Selena," a lighthearted love letter to the Mexican American diva that shamelessly quotes her "Bidi Bidi Bum Bum" over a light reggae beat before it morphs into a screaming loud carnival number. Many of the songs here shift genres with fascinating ease, like when the epic "Touch Your Button Carnival Jam" goes from a Black Eyed Peas-styled pop number to an intense soca workout. Then there's "Riot," a duet featuring System of a Down's Serj Tankian and dancehall dread Sizzla that utilizes a tense rock rhythm before exiting on a wet reggae beat. If it all sounds overwhelming, it's held together by Wyclef's well-crafted arrangements, and if Serj and Sizzla sound like an odd combination, try Sizzla and Minister Louis Farrakhan on violin for "Welcome to the East." Chamillionaire gets a Bollywood orchestra as a backing band, T.I.'s track is almost a hippie number, and Paul Simon croons over an R&B beat during "Fast Car," not the Tracy Chapman one but a song just as poignant. While this skillful mixing and matching of the A-list makes quite a first impression, it's the songwriting that sticks as Wyclef has upped his game. The deadbeat dad story "What About the Baby" is a convincing exchange between Wyclef and Mary J. Blige because of all the honesty written into it, and lines like "I got love for Miami all day/But if my Cubans get to stay/Why you turn my Haitians away?" add edge and weight to an album that's otherwise slick and immaculately polished. To make sure the immigration issue is always nearby, Wyclef quietly and at regular intervals references "shelter," "helping hands," and other words of refuge and protection. It's done so masterfully that it makes the couple "I'm gonna grab my guitar!" moments worth ignoring, which are the only times Wyclef's ego seems to be muscling into the mix. Otherwise, Carnival, Vol. 2 strives to give the immigration problem a face, turning those thousands of marchers seen on the news into a thousand personal stories of struggle and hope. It does so while pulsating with life and displaying an unabashed love of music that's rich, daring, and delightful. [Carnival, Vol. 2 was also made available in a Deluxe Edition featuring an enhanced bonus CD with five new audio tracks and three videos.]

Product Details

Release Date:
12/04/2007
Label:
Sony
UPC:
0886971569629
catalogNumber:
715696

Tracks

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Wyclef Jean   Primary Artist,Guitar
Andy Grassi   Guitar
Jerry "Wonda" Duplessis   Bass
Norah Jones   Wurlitzer
Joe Tomino   Percussion
J. Thomas   Keyboards
Lamont "Logic" Coleman   Percussion
LaTavia Parker   Background Vocals
Rubin Kodheli   Cello
Aadesh Shrivastava   Vocals
Keith "Lil Wonda" Duplessis   Keyboards
Mike "Nyte" DeSalvo   Horn
David Brozer   Guitar
Horacio Jiménez   Vocals
Anthony Leggett   Background Vocals
Arden "Keyz" Altino   Keyboards

Technical Credits

Rich Nice   Producer
Keith Lancaster   Composer
Robbie Shakespeare   Composer
Andy Grassi   Engineer
Erwin Gorostiza   Art Direction
Wyclef Jean   Composer,Producer,Executive Producer
Dennis Coles   Composer
Robert Diggs   Composer
Jerry "Wonda" Duplessis   Composer,Producer,Executive Producer
will.i.am   Producer,Engineer
Julian Vasquez   Engineer
David Banner   Producer
T.I.   Executive Producer
Norah Jones   Composer
Chris Feldmann   Art Direction
Lamont "Logic" Coleman   Composer,Producer
Guy Manoukian   Producer
Roberto Martino   Composer
Doug Rotwitt   Engineer
Jimmy "Henchmen" Rosemond   Executive Producer
Aadesh Shrivastava   String Arrangements
Keith "Lil Wonda" Duplessis   Producer
Mike "Nyte" DeSalvo   Engineer
Devon Golder   Composer
Elliot Carter   Engineer
Lee Alexander   Composer

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