It’s hard to refute the indelible mark that ’90s R&B girl group TLC left behind. In fact, numbers prove the trio to be one of the best-selling girl groups of all time. This year, surviving members Tionne “T-Boz” Watkins and Rozonda “Chilli” Thomas will celebrate TLC’s 20th anniversary while simultaneously remembering the tragic loss of their bandmate Lisa “Left Eye” Lopes, who passed away 10 years ago today in a car crash in Honduras.
To add to TLC’s 20th anniversary celebration, VH1 is preparing to go into production for a scripted biopic on the group. T-Boz and Chilli recently spoke with ESSENCE.com about the tragic loss of Left Eye, who they want to play them in their biopic, and a 20th anniversary TLC tour.
ESSENCE.com: Today marks 10 years since we lost Lisa “Left Eye” Lopes in a tragic car accident. What do you remember about that day?
T-BOZ: She died a day before my birthday. I remember everything. I was with security in my Porsche and I said to them, “I feel like I’m going to get in a wreck and I want to go home.” The driver said: “Well, that’s on the other side of town.” I didn’t care; I wanted to go home. I just felt something was going to happen to me, but it wasn’t me — it was Lisa.
I was sitting in a rocking chair in my daughter’s room after putting her down when I got a call from Chilli. She was screaming. I had just gotten out the hospital from fighting sickle cell so I had to be careful about getting upset. Everybody was trying to keep me calm.
I remember staying up all night and Patti Labelle and Missy Elliot calling me. Whitney Houston was at Lisa’s funeral. She sat behind me and rubbed my shoulders for two hours, while telling me, “It’s going to be okay, it’s going to be all right.” Right before that, I remember Lisa played a trick where she went missing and nobody knew where she was. This was the one time I wish she was joking and doing one of her stunts, but she wasn’t…
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