ATLANTA — Listening to TLC's T-Boz and Chilli talk about "Girl Talk," the first single from 3D was almost like hearing an in-and-out duet. One woman would drop a line and the other would immediately come in, either adding on to, or finishing, her partner's thought.
"We've had so many first singles [lined up for 3D]," Chilli recalled.
"About four of them," T-Boz clarified. "The day before the single came out, it got changed."
"Yeah, it was gonna be 'Quickie,' then it was 'Girl Talk,' " Chilli said. "In a way it's kinda good, because that meant they had a hard time choosing."
"['Girl Talk' is] controversial, and it's talking about the thing that we as TLC like to talk about so much," T-Boz explained before her musical co-defendant interjected.
"Boys, boys, boys," Chilli said, smiling. "[It's about] all the stereotypes of men, with the big hands and big feet. Just because you have big hands and big feet does not mean you have big thaaangs."
"And just because you have a big thing does not mean you know how to work it," T-Boz lamented. "Some people always say they have big things and they don't. And just like how men talk about women — 'I had her, I had her' — we talk about you, too. So don't think if you didn't come up to bat that we won't go, 'Girl, he was ter-ree-bull!"
"Ter-ree-blay," Chilli added, laughing.
On "Girl Talk," which late groupmember Left Eye also appears on, the trio address being disappointed by their jive-talking lovers. "Put in work, 'cause if you don't, that girl just gonna go spreading the word.../ Girls talk about the booty too."
In the video for "Girl Talk," which was directed by Dave Meyers in Atlanta last week (see "TLC Ready To Shoot First Video From 3D"), females from all over the world are chatting amongst themselves about guys who are no good in the bedroom.
"We represent for the ladies, period," Chilli affirmed. "We can't tell everything [about the video], we don't want to give everything away, because there's something real special at the end. We have clothes that say 'Left Eye' and her picture is going around and down the side of jogging pants. The dancers have a [painted] black mark under their eyes."
"It was hard to come up with [ideas] because she isn't here," T-Boz added. "That's reality. It's not easy to come up with how to incorporate her, especially when she has a whole rap in the song."
"What we didn't want to do is [make] your typical video [where] you see old clips," Chilli said. "Sometimes, stuff like that fits certain songs, but to show old clips of Lisa didn't fit 'Girl Talk.' What you'll get from the video is no matter where you go [and whatever language you speak], women will talk about men."
Although the clip was shot entirely in Hotlanta, the video features scenes that are supposed to take place in an African rain forest and in a metropolitan area in Japan. T-Boz and Chilli said it's going to be the fun first offering we're accustomed to seeing from TLC, rather than a tribute ballad to Left Eye, who was killed in an auto accident in April, as some may have expected (see "TLC Album Preview: 3D Tributes Left Eye With Sass, Spunk, Silence").
"We never came out like that, so why would we do it now?" T-Boz said. "We're still TLC, though. And the spirit, she's still here. Don't change it. If it's not broke, don't fix it."
3D is due November 12.
Catch much more from our interview with TLC when the MTV News special "TLC: Life In 3D" premieres on November 11.
For complete coverage on the Lisa "Left Eye" Lopes tragedy, see Remembering Left Eye: The Lisa Lopes Reports.
— Shaheem Reid, with additional reporting by SuChin Pak