4. TLC “No Scrubs”
Released: Spring 1999
Oh, yes! It had to be “No Scrubs.” When I first heard this song…Well, first off I was just so happy to have TLC back after 4 years. I’ve always said that an artist has to come back strong with that first single off of a new project after they’ve been away for awhile. And the promotional single, “Silly Ho,” just didn’t do it for me. It sounded like a wannabe Missy song.
So, I was weary of the first official single. But this, just sounded like something else. Today it just sounds like “No Scrubs.” But, when I first heard it. I knew it was TLC, but it was like I hadn’t heard them before. Chilli hadn’t ever been in the front really. And the harmonies were just bananas to me. And the beat was so infectiously sweet that I…I don’t know…I was going to say got tooth decay, but that’s just corny. It was just anthemic and the video was first class with all the extras. And what made it extra extra special was Left Eye’s call-outs all over it, which is signature TLC, and her rap, of course. (I don’t understand why this wasn’t the version on the album from the gitty-up. Why wouldn’t the record company want all 3 girls on the album version? It’s obviously better by far.)
I remember thinking that one reason TLC was so popular was because they had a nice balance of masculine and feminine (though all 3 got sexier and more womanly as they “grew up”). Chilli was the most girly. Left Eye was the most tomboyish. And, T-Boz was right in the middle with a nice balance of both. There was something for everyone; something for every taste.