Carnival III: The Fall and Rise of a Refugee

Carnival III: The Fall and Rise of a Refugee

Carnival III: The Fall and Rise of a Refugee

Carnival III: The Fall and Rise of a Refugee


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Wyclef Jean's solo discography has been dizzying following the first volume of The Carnival. A series of label and distribution changes, stopgap EPs and stray singles, abrupt conceptual shifts, and announcements trailed by delays and title changes didn't make his moves easy to follow. A multitude of collaborative juxtapositions that seemed random rather than shrewd, and appeared on releases with lengthy titles containing colons and Roman and Arabic numerals, added to the confusion. Another factor was the alternation between prolific and dry periods -- three albums in three years, and then, as Jean juggled various political and charitable causes, and was entangled in a few legal and public relations messes, the next three albums were spread across 13 years. In one significant sense, Carnival III: The Fall and Rise of a Refugee arrived right on time -- ten years after after the sequel, which followed the original by the same amount of time. It's a standard Wyclef Jean release, lively and positive, concerned with the upliftment of the everyday person, blending cross-continental sounds with a broad mix of well over a dozen guests -- this time involving the likes of Emeli Sandé, LunchMoney Lewis, and the Knocks, along with several relative newcomers. As with the first two Carnival releases, this isn't all fun and games. Odds-bucking prosperity, dream fulfillment, and mere survival remain themes for Jean. In the sonically murky if lyrically hopeful opener, "Slums," he plainly states "Statistically, I ain't even supposed to be here," while the part-acoustic ballad, part-regal anthem "Warrior" offers encouragement to the bullied and misunderstood. There are several upbeat grooves and romantic numbers, such as the frothy and escapist "What Happened to Love," the boisterous "Fela Kuti," and the Celia Cruz-sampling "Trapicabana" (indeed a fusion of booming/snaking trap production and vintage salsa rhythms). Carnival III isn't quite as thrilling as the 1997 and 2007 volumes. Now that the pop world has finally caught up with Jean's wild synthesis, it's certainly less novel in approach, but its high spirit nonetheless provides some lasting value.

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Product Details

Release Date: 09/15/2017
Label: Sony Legacy
UPC: 0889854605827
catalogNumber: 546058
Rank: 119158


  1. Slums
  2. Turn Me Good
  3. Borrowed Time
  4. Fela Kuti
  5. Warrior
  6. Shotta Boys
  7. Double Dutch
  8. What Happened to Love
  9. Carry On
  10. Concrete Rose
  11. Trapicabana
  12. Thank God for the Culture

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Wyclef Jean   Primary Artist,Bass,Guitar,Piano,Keyboards,Soloist
Louie Rankin   Guest Appearance
Leon Lacey   Organ,Piano,Keyboards
Lucas Bakker   Guitar
Jazzy Amra   Vocals

Technical Credits

Julian Priester   Composer
David Davis   Engineer
Fela Kuti   Composer
Emilio Estefan   Composer
Teddy Riley   Composer
Wyclef Jean   Composer,Producer,Executive Producer
Anthony Ellis   Production Director
Madeline Nelson   Composer,Executive Producer
Supah Mario   Producer
Leon Lacey   Producer,Horn Arrangements,Strings Orchestrator
Ross Clark   Composer
Jacob Kasher   Composer
Knocks   Producer
Emeli Sandé   Composer
Anjeanette Chirino   Composer
Chris "Flict" Aparri   Composer,Producer,Engineer
Sidney Swift   Composer,Producer
James Patterson   Composer
Alberto Vaccarino   Producer,Engineer
Alex Goodwin   Composer
Ben Ruttner   Composer
Phillip Fender   Composer,Engineer
Michael Onufrak   Composer,Producer
Branden "Wavie Boi" Washington   Producer,Engineer,Additional Production
Ally Burnstein   Art Direction

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