TLC’s T-Boz Says Lisa “Left Eye” Lopes Would’ve Been the “Kanye West Wife”

“TLC Forever” took about 2.5 years to create and about 30 years to percolate.

The new documentary that delves into the triumphs and tragedies of the trio that created nine Top 10 hits – was there a radio station in 1999 that didn’t spin ‘Unpretty’ and ‘No Scrubs’ on relentless rotation? – lands Saturday on A&E and Lifetime (8 p.m. ET/PT) with an affecting big hit.

Tionne “T-Boz” Watkins and Rozonda “Chilli” Thomas guide viewers through the group’s early days as loose-clothed stars whose new mix of hip-hop and pop helped solidify Atlanta’s position in as a music capital, their huge success with the albums “CrazySexyCool” and “FanMail” and the tragic death in 2002 of member Lisa “Left Eye” Lopes.

Between the headlines are reality checks on health, abortion, births, adoptions, restaurant affiliations, grueling tour rehearsals and everlasting friendship.

Watkins shared some thoughts on “TLC Forever” — which repeats at 5:30 p.m. (ET/PT) Sunday and airs on Lifetime — and why she and Thomas are “not leaving.”

TLC's Rozonda

TLC’s Rozonda

T-Boz talks about the severity of his health issues

The frank Watkins recalls at the beginning of the film that the doctors said that she would not live beyond 30 years. Born with sickle cell disease, her life has always involved the intervention of medicine and treatment. But the cellphone footage of her in a hospital room, five days before the 2021 launch of TLC’s Celebration of CrazySexyCool tour, is shocking.

Watkins, 53, said she decided to share the personal images – and talk more about her condition, as well as the benign brain tumor she had removed in 2010 – because she is “to a different place in my life.”

“Growing up over the years and realizing how many things I’ve triumphed on makes you start to reminisce, like, fuck, I’ve been through this And That ? “, she says. “I just thought I might as well tell people so they understand and hope it helps someone.”

TLC kicked off a summer tour with Shaggy, En Vogue and Sean Kingston on June 1 and Watkins says his regimen includes a massage therapist to make sure his blood is circulating properly, stretching, taking holistic vitamins and inhaling oxygen. before and after the show.

Joining her are her children, Chase, 22, and Chance, 7 – Chase created the Anela Beauty line and does TLC’s makeup for the tour – making life on the road more enjoyable.

“Just being able to have them with me is a blessing,” she says.

Even 30 years after their debut, TLC (Tionne

Even 30 years after their debut, TLC (Tionne

Why Lisa ‘Left Eye’ Lopes Would Be Kanye West’s ‘Wife’

Near the end of the two-hour documentary, Watkins sits down with Thomas and jokes that if Lopes, who was killed in a car crash in Honduras, were alive today, “she would be the Kanye West wife.” .

Indeed, vintage footage throughout the film shines a light on Lopes’ fierce personality and his direct commentary on everything from his desire to creatively stretch from TLC to his incendiary relationship with the former United States football player. Atlanta Falcons Andre Rison, whose mansion she burned down.

Watkins laughs fondly when asked to expand on his commentary on Kanye.

“I said that because Lisa was always saying things. If she had fingers on Twitter, she’d be all over the place and have something to say about everything and not care. She’d make all the shocking comments,” says Watkins: “And Kanye was the only comparison I could think of about what my sister would be like now.”

TLC’s Legacy Has Even More Chapters

Still recognized as the most successful American girl group in music history, TLC receives many accolades from its peers, including Questlove, Missy Elliott, Jermaine Dupri and Dave Grohl.

The Foo Fighters frontman is a friend TLC met overseas, but more importantly, he has a unique perspective on grief, having lost bandmates Kurt Cobain and Taylor Hawkins.

“He can totally sympathize with what we’re going through,” Watkins said.

But with this string of hits — “Waterfalls,” “Creep,” and “What About Your Friends” still conjure up good vibes — and steady live performances, TLC has more going for it, as Watkins and Thomas claim in the documentary.

A new album is unlikely — 2017’s self-funded “TLC” was tagged as their last — but Watkins says there’s always room for new TLC music, including a Broadway play about their history. being brewed.

She is typically resolute when she states, “Just know we’re not leaving.”

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This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: ‘TLC Forever’ Explores Career Triumph, T-Boz’s Illness, Lisa Lopes’ Death

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