Artist of the Week

Hip-Hop is a mans world filled with video vixens and bubbly Champaign, but in the 90’s one female group broke through into the spot light with a blend of pop, Hip-Hop, R&B, and attitude. The Group was TLC, and no, that doesn’t stand for Tender Loving Care but T-Boz, Left Eye and Chilli, also known as Tionne Watkins Lisa Lopes and Rozonda Thomas. The group from Atlanta hit it big with their single, “Baby, Baby, Baby,” off their first album, “On the TLC tip”. Their funky young sound made them rocket up the charts with two top hits off their debut album. TLC also got some attention by promoting safe sex when Lisa “left eye” Lopes wore a condom over her left eye. TLC’s musical life was like a lifetime channel movie of the week, filled with inner struggles among band mates, trips to rehab and Lisa burning down former Kansas City Chief wide receiver and former boyfriend, Andre Rison’s multimillion dollar home; all this before the group’s second album even came out. “CrazySexyCool,” came out and blew the band into the stratosphere, with songs like “Creep,” “Waterfalls,” and “Digg’in on You.” The album was polished and more grown up than their previous release with comments on monogamy and the HIV epidemic. “Waterfalls”, one of the group’s, biggest successes is a chilling tale about the bad choices we sometimes make in life and how they affect other people or even have a negative effect on ourselves. With chilling verses like:”Little precious has a natural obsession for temptation but he just can’t see she gives him loving that his body can’t handle but all he can say is baby it’s good to me one day he goes and takes a glimpse in the mirror but he doesn’t recognize his own face his health is fading and he doesn’t know why three letters took him to his final resting place ya’ll don’t hear me.”Not many people at this time had the balls to come out with a song like this talking about why it was important to practice safe sex. Though it took them a while, because of troubles with the band, to come out with their third album they didn’t lose their fans. One of the gems on this album for me is “Un-pretty,” which is a song about the stress girls are under to look pretty and be that “magazine girl.” The song talks about the pressures put on them from boyfriends and even other girls themselves. The lyric that really hits home with me as a woman “You can buy your hair if it won’t grow you can fix your nose if he says so…” Because every woman has felt, at some point, that maybe if I change myself he will want me more or he will stay with me. TLC are in my opinion the breakthrough R&B and Hip-Hop girl group, that appealed to a wide audience and also drew attention to some very important topics involving safe sex and body image.