Wyclef Jean, DJ Irie to perform at Nikki Fried inaugural ball


Three-time Grammy Award-winning artist Wyclef Jean will be helping Florida’s lone Democratic statewide official elected in 2018 celebrate next week’s inauguration.

Florida Politics has learned that Jean and DJ Irie, a philanthropic South Florida artist who hosts an annual benefit concert in Miami, will perform at Agriculture Commissioner-elect Nikki Fried’s inaugural ball.

The event, titled “Growing a Stronger Florida,” will take place 7:30 p.m. on Monday in Tallahassee at Florida State University’s Doak Campbell Stadium inside the University Center Club.

Attire is cocktail chic. Tickets run $125 per person. 

Jean is a hip-hop musician whose career kicked off with the legendary Fugees group. He has since pursued solo work and has featured on or worked alongside hits spanning decades.

Jean earned his first two Grammy Awards after the 1996 release of “The Score,” an album by the Fugees.

“The Score” was named Best Rap Album. One of the album’s hits, “Killing Me Softly with His Song,” won an R&B-related Grammy.

Irie, who will accompany Jean on stage, each year hosts Irie Weekend in Miami. Proceeds from the concert benefit the IRIE Foundation. According to its website, Irie Weekend “works to provide South Florida’s troubled youth with unique educational & cultural programming and scholarship opportunities.”

In an email sent earlier this week teasing a “celebrity performer,” Fried’s inaugural team said Democrats across the state “have something to celebrate.”

“It is the first time in over 20 years that we have elected a Democratic Commissioner of Agriculture and we don’t want you to miss out on the festivities,” wrote Ben Pollara and Jenni Shaffren, chairs of Fried’s inaugural committee.

Danny McAuliffe

Danny McAuliffe is a Tallahassee correspondent for Florida Politics. He is a graduate of Florida State University, where he served as the editor of the FSView & Florida Flambeau. He is a lifelong Floridian and indulges in swimming, hiking, running and memes when the news cycle permits. Reach him at [email protected]


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