Thursday, December 19, 2002
Steamboat Springs Tone Loc was "just chillin'" this week before heading out to Colorado as part of his recent tour.
And when Tone says he's just chillin', that means he's doing "not a damn thing," he said by phone on Wednesday.
"I've been on the road a lot. I've been taking it easy. What can I say, just being lazy," he said.
His voice was raspy, low and smooth. It was the famous voice that set him apart from other rappers in the late '80s, making him the most popular selling black rap artist in his time.
His debut album, "Loc'ed After Dark," made it to No. 1, only the second rap album to do so in the United States, the first being the Beastie Boys' "License to Ill."
Tone's album featured the two huge 1990 hits, "Wild Thing" and "Funky Cold Medina," with "Wild Thing" going on to become America's second biggest-selling single of all time.
After his sophomore effort, "Cool Hand Loc," sold few albums, Tone went into acting, landing roles in several movies and television spots.
He still likes to do his thing with music, which prompts him to book shows, mainly smaller venues. He's been on the road for the past five years, mainly doing weekend gigs around the country.
"I do the small shows because we have fun," Tone said. "You're just more in touch with the crowd. It's like some old-school-type of stuff. It's more of a party-like atmosphere, rather than a big show or an arena."
Though Tone still writes new songs, and hopes to have a new album out by April, he knows what people want to hear when they go to his shows.
"You know you got to have some 'Wild Thing' and some 'Funky Cold Medina.' I got to bring that," he said.
Though Tone may be the epitome of old-school rap, he still remains a young 31 years old. His fame and success came when he was 19 and 20 years old.
"I was in my teens when I first came in," he said. "I was having fun."
A former L.A. gang member, Tone said he has left that part of his life behind him. He still lives in L.A.
"I like it. A lot of people choose to move out. I never really wanted to, to tell you the truth," he said.
Warm weather appeals to him, too, which relates to his only reservation about coming to Steamboat to play a show at Levelz Saturday night -- the cold.
"I know it's cold up there. I don't even have to ask," he said.
Tone won't be doing any skiing, but he's still looking forward to the show.
"I'm just coming to have some fun," he said.