Appearance, History, Interview, Television

T-Boz Stars In Netflix Series ‘Hip-Hop Evolution’: “Atlanta Was The Twerk Capital!”

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Hip-Hop Evolution is a hit Canadian music documentary series that originally aired on HBO Canada in 2016, which has since spawned 3 seasons on Netflix, featuring in-depth interviews with a selection of some of hip-hop’s original artists, producers, DJs, and promoters.

A hot and sticky music scene is born in Atlanta as the infectious hooks of TLC and Kris Kross yield to the gritty originality of OutKast and Goodie Mob.

In it’s 3rd season, our very own Tionne “T-Boz” Watkins shares details of her humble beginnings of how she started out in the business and the major part she played in helping to shape Atlanta: ‘The Dirty South’, to become the pioneering force in music that it is today.

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T-Boz in Hip-Hop Evolution

Before the music scene was dominated with what we know today as ‘twerking’, T-Boz says it was originally known as something else. “We used to call it shake dancing before it was called twerking, and then that started the stripping thing in the strip capital”, T-Boz reminisces. “Atlanta was the shake dance capital”.

L.A. Reid and Babyface decided to uproot from Los Angeles and arrived in Atlanta in 1989 to launch their new label, LaFace Records. T-Boz was working in a hair salon at the time, when she learned that her friend, Marie Davis, used to do hair for Pebbles, who was married to L.A. Reid at the time.

download (2)_1.gif“I was like, ‘yo, you need to go and tell Pebbles that I’m the bomb, she need to holla at me'”, T-Boz recalls. “I didn’t really think that she would do it, but Pebbles called me at home that night. It was Chilli, me and Lisa. We were calling ourselves TLC. It wasn’t really girly, but it had a lot of hip-hop elements. Lisa, she came in as a little, feisty rapper, so that gave us that hip-hop element.”

 

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Pebbles with TLC

T-Boz was only interested in working with producers in Atlanta, her long-time friend, Dallas Austin, to be precise. “When we did get to L.A. Reid, he asked who we wanted to work with and I would only say Dallas Austin, he has to be our producer — and he got it”.

Despite the crossover appeal of TLC and Dallas Austin, a soulful team of producers were waiting to be discovered. Rico Wade, Ray Murray and Sleepy Brown aka Organized Noize, were good friends with T-Boz, who introduced the production trio to Pebbles.

Pebbles being interested in their talents led them to work with other LaFace Records artists, which in turn led to the discovery of Outkast, Goodie Mob and the Dungeon Family.

Organized Noize eventually crafted the most iconic TLC single in history, the legendary “Waterfalls“.

Catch the unmissable Hip-Hop Evolution series on Netflix now.
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Appearance, Interview, Music

Chilli and Tron Austin Talk ‘Captions’ Going Viral and His Favorite TLC Song

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Following that phenomenal video Chilli went viral with last month, dancing to her son, Tron Austin‘s latest single, “Captions“, the mother and son made an appearance on Good Day Atlanta to talk about everything from Tron’s expectations as a new artist to Chilli’s life on tour with TLC!

Music comes as second nature to Tron, with his dad being the super producer Dallas Austin, and of course his mom being a member of the super group TLC. Tron has been itching to get his creativity out in the world, and now that he has graduated from college, it’s the perfect time to make it happen.

“Ever since I got out of college it’s been so surreal for me”, Tron exclaims. “I need to get to that next level — I need to make a name for myself now, too. So, after I had my records done and I was able to bring it to my mom, and she even volunteered and said she wants to dance to my song, it makes me feel good because it feels like I’m really doing it”.

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Tron feels that having a mom that is a member of the biggest-selling girl group of all time has it’s advantages and disadvantages, as the stakes are super high now. “Some people would say it’s more pressure added because of that reason”, Tron admits. “I think all that stuff is true, but it’s all in good terms. It’s good pressure in the advantages. She can help guide me, and make sure my path is clear, too”.

Chilli co-signs Tron, announcing how proud she is of her son and although she didn’t want him to be in the music industry, as she knows how hard it can be, but he is passionate about his craft so she is fully supportive of him. “He has what it takes, and he’s very humble! We don’t play those games!”, Chilli laughs.

Tron opens up about how close he his to his mom, and gives Chilli props for being able to perfectly balance being a parent and a friend at the same time. “Obviously the respect is always there, it’s not like she was just my friend”, Tron says. “But at the same time I think my mom has managed a good balance between being a great parent and know how to be a good friend to your child from a young age and now that I’m an adult, it’s still the same type of way”.

Tron explains that he would like his music to reflect his originality and his love for all of the genres that he grew up with. “My sound is more like pop, mixed with hip-hop and R&B, because I sing too”, Tron says. “I try and do as much as possible and fuse things together, because the more you fuse things together, the more ears that you can please”.

Chilli gushes about the recent TLC ‘Whole Lotta Hitstour that wrapped last month across North America with rappers Nelly and Flo Rida. “We did the tour with Live Nation. It was amazing. We’ve always been on tour, but some tours are a lot more fun than others, and this was one of them, for sure”, Chilli admits.

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Chilli remains humble and gives all of the praises of her success to God, after 27 years in the business and still loving what she does. “We’re always so thankful and we’re still hungry for it”, Chilli says. “I’m 48 and I can’t tell the difference, energy-wise, from when I was 21!”.

Tron reveals that his favorite TLC song is actually a song that doesn’t feature his mom on the lead vocals. “She’s gonna give me heat for it, but “Creep” is my favorite”, Tron laughs. “It’s the melody — I started out as a drummer and a producer too, and a lot of the sounds and the instruments that are incorporated kinda resonated, so it’s always been — and “No Scrubs“, obviously”, Tron adds with a smile.

Tron Austin’s smash hit single, “Captions“, is available on all digital formats right now! 
Appearance, Lifestyle, Relationships, Television

‘Girls Cruise’ Episode 6: Trinidad Traditions, Loneliness and Proposals

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The ladies finally step foot down in Trinidad and love is in the air, as one of the crew members has a crush on Lil’ Kim. Meanwhile on episode 6, while competing for the number one spot, Tiffany decides to plot out a huge surprise for Kim that’s sure to raise a few eyebrows!

Following the last episode when the group broke barriers and bonded even closer in Tobago’s Nylon Pool, they are determined to step further in to their true selves, and live it up in Trinidad on the first day of carnival!

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Tiffany takes a call from her fiancè Adam and discuss a surprise they have in store for Kim. Tiffany states that she has been brainstorming the best way to ask Kim to be a big part of her wedding.

Pretty Vee works on a video blog discussing her past, recovering from the bullying she experienced in high school. Vena wants to open up about her struggles with depression and anxiety, in the hopes that it can help somebody else cope in the future.

Upon their arrival in Trinidad, and with 12 hours to go before the carnival begins, Rome, who is acting as their tour guide in his home town, decides that the girls must take part in the traditional limbo!

Rome introduces the crew to try some local street food. “We’re gonna have Doubles”, Rome tells the girls. Explaining what they were eating, he says “This is actually an Indian recipe that was brought here. They would fry flour and then add chick peas with curry and then probably add some vegetables.” It’s the number one street food in Trinidad and Tobago.

Rome announces that the group will need to be ready at 3am in the morning to take part in some traditional pre-carnival activities. Chilli smells something sweet in the air and heads over to get some natural sweets with the group. “Seeing Rome in his element is amazing”, Chilli says. “He’s like the president here in Trinidad”.

After trying some coconut jelly, Tobias casually escorts Kim away from the group to show her some jewellery and have some time alone with her, looking at the local shops. Kim stops for some of the locals to take photos with them. Kim admits that despite the fame, she often goes home feeling lonely as she doesn’t know who she can trust, so she’s grateful for this trip with her friends.

Tiffany confides in Char about the way she wants to propose Kim the offer of being her maid of honor for her wedding. “Instead of maid of honor or bridesmaid, I wanna ask her to be the Queen of honor, that is her nickname, but it will be so much fun”, Tiffany states. “I think it will be memorable to do it on this trip. I just need your help to plan it with me”.

Kim knocks on Chilli’s door, 8 hours before carnival, for some girl talk. Chilli let’s Kim know that she can see that Tobias the chef has a crush on her. Despite him being physically attractive, Kim makes it known she isn’t interested in him in that way. “Gotta have the whole package”, Kim insists.

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Chilli then speaks about Rome’s attempts to hit on her, along with a convincing Caribbean accent. “I really like him as a friend. He’s so cool and he’s cute, but I would totally never date him”, Chilli confesses. “He would drive me crazy! Because it’s like I say I don’t drink. [Mimics Rome] ‘Come on Chilli! One drink! One drink! Get you out of your comfort zone!’ I don’t drink, why would I have one drink with you?”

Chilli touches on why she is comfortable with being alone. “There are a lot of people that are so afraid of being alone, that they have got to have somebody there. But I feel like having the wrong person there is the worst type of loneliness”, Chilli admits. “With me being alone by choice, I feel like this is a very healthy place — and I love my healthy! But I love when people are true to their feelings”.

Pretty Vee states that she was inspired to be open after hanging out with Mya, who opened up to her about her own insecurities. Mya states that she understands Vena’s comedy comes from a place of pain, and that she is happy her friend is starting to open up more. “If you live your life trying to please everybody else, you’ll drive yourself crazy”, Mya advises.

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Mya is starting to question if she is a workaholic and whether she should start to give relationships a chance, after admitting she last had a date 8 years ago. ” I had to think for a minute. What do I want?”, Mya ponders. “I’m so protective of keeping my peace, I haven’t let anybody in yet. When you love yourself so much and fill yourself with the proper kind of love so you don’t search for it in somebody else”.

Chef Tobias surprises Kim in her room with a specially prepared hazelnut meringue and a little catch up. Kim is impressed that he addressed her by her middle name, Denise. “I would say Lil’ Kim is a little bit more reserved than Kimberley Denise Jones. But if you party with me you’re gonna get all sides — and if you piss me off you’ll get Kimmy Blanco!”.

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B. Simone and Pretty Vee talk during a meal together, as they get the message from Char about Tiffany’s plan to ask Kim to be her Queen of honor. Chilli later helps to get the ceremony prepared, laying out candles with the help of Rome, who admits he never used to be very romantic.

Chilli tells Rome about her concerns about the revealing traditional outfits she may be expected to wear at the carnival. “I’m a little nervous to see the outfit because those outfits are just skimpy! They look good. Beautiful, actually. But I can’t have my little booty out”, she says. Rome questions if she never wore risque outfits over the years onstage.

“You’ve never seen TLC in concert, clearly!”, Chilli replies. “We don’t dress like that. We’re very covered from the waist down. We show a little something at the top but that’s about it. That’s just our style. We’re like prissy tomboys”.

Rome reassures her that she will have nothing to worry about, as they will ensure she has something to cover up if she doesn’t want to show too much. “They say carnival kinda makes people act devilish — a HOT ratchet mess! I don’t do those things”, Chilli adds. “But we’ll see!”.

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Kim receives a special message delivered by Jamie to her bedroom. “Dear Kim, thank you for all that you do. Meet me at the top of the bell at the boat”, the message reads. Kim heads up and is greeted by Tiffany on her knees to propose to Kim. Kim excitedly accepts her Queen of honor proposal and they hug each other. The team then get together to celebrate.

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Don’t miss day one of the carnival when the girls really get turnt up! The next instalment of ‘Girls Cruise’ will air on September 2 on VH1 at 9/8c.

Episode 6

Appearance, Interview, Tribute

‘2 The Left’: Kerisse Hutchinson and Left Eye’s Sister on Her Tribute Play to Lisa

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Actress Kerisse Hutchinson alongside the sister of the late Lisa ‘Left Eye’ Lopes stopped by Good Day Atlanta to discuss the play “2 The Left: A Tribute to the Life of Lisa ‘Left Eye’ Lopes.

It premiered in Atlanta at the Synchronicity Theatre for a two-week, limited-engagement showcase.

The production ran from Aug. 1 to Aug. 11 and is an inspiring music-filled multimedia production written and performed by Kerisse Hutchinson.

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The play chronicles the life and spiritual journey of Atlanta rap icon Lisa “Left Eye” Lopes, showing the challenges she encountered as she embarked on a journey to find her artistic voice and spiritual purpose.

We hope that the play will be re-run again for those who missed it the first time round.

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