BY MELISSA RUGGIERI
You could call TLC’s Kickstarter campaign to record their final album a success.
A very, very big success.
Their final tally of $430,255 is nearly three times the amount of the group’s original goal of $150,000 when the fund was established Jan. 19. They hit the $150k mark within days of announcing their plans to record one more album.
At the close of the campaign, TLC’s Tionne “T-Boz” Watkins and Rozonda “Chilli” Thomas thanked fans on the site not only for the financial contributions, but for the meaning behind them: “The amount doesn’t matter but the fact that you donated means the world to us.”
In a recent interview with the AJC, Atlanta native Chilli reiterated that point, noting that while higher profile donations from stars including Katy Perry and TLC’s upcoming tour mates New Kids on the Block helped publicize their mission, she was touched by the significance of every contribution.
“I love the fact that my niece who is young and working pledged $35. More so than the amount that she pledged says so much to me. It says so much more than dollar signs,” Chilli said.
The contributions came from a total of 4,201 backers who will receive rewards ranging from handwritten lists of favorite TLC songs to signed CDs to meet and greets with the ladies before a show on their tour with NKOTB and Nelly.
While the duo is still in the planning stages for the album, they have earmarked the money for recording expenses, including working with top-notch producers (longtime collaborator Dallas Austin is on board).
With more than 65 million records sold worldwide, TLC is ranked as the best-selling American female group of all time. In their ‘90s prime, T-Boz and Chilli – along with Lisa “Left Eye” Lopes, who died in a car accident in Honduras in 2002 – ruled the charts with a string of R&B/pop crossover hits including “No Scrubs,” “Unpretty,” “Waterfalls” and “Creep.”
The “Main Event” tour with NKOTB and Nelly hits Philips Arena on June 6.