Missy Elliott, Bobby Valentino, Chamillionaire and the surviving members of TLC headline the guest list on the posthumous Lisa "Left Eye" Lopes solo album, "Eye Legacy." The album was released today (Jan. 27) by Boston-based Mass Appeal Entertainment in conjunction with the Lopes family.
Comprised of 12 tracks and two bonus selections, "Eye Legacy" offers a mix of unreleased tracks as well as retooled songs from the former TLC member's 2001 limited edition international release "Supernova." Rounding out the package is a DVD featuring never-before-seen video footage from Left Eye's final days. The lead single is the previously unreleased "Let's Just Do It" with Elliott and TLC's Tionne "T-Boz" Watkins and Rozonda "Chilli" Thomas. Additional guests include former BET "106 & Park" host Free on "Spread Your Wings" and Lil Mama on "Block Party." Completely reproduced, both of these tracks initially appeared on "Supernova."
Left Eye, an original member of the Grammy Award-winning trio TLC, died in a car wreck in the Honduras in April 2002. Releasing first album "Ooooooohhh ... on the TLC Tip" in 1992, TLC added three more albums to its repertoire: "CrazySexyCool," "Fanmail" and "3D." Collectively, TLC albums have sold 15.5 million units in the U.S., according to Nielsen SoundScan.
Work on "Eye Legacy" commenced 18 months ago after the Lopes family bought the masters from Left Eye's former label, LaFace/Arista. During talks with producer (Backstreet Boys, Lauryn Hill) and Mass Appeal CEO Marcus "DL" Siskind, it was decided that several tracks would be revamped to include artist cameos. A portion of the album's sales will be donated to the Lisa Lopes Foundation (lisalopesfoundation.org ), dedicated to helping inner-city youth.
Says Siskind, "We wanted to take these masters and really make something everyone was comfortable with and that also fit what fans know and would want to hear from Lisa." Siskind served as the album's executive producer while members of Lopes' family-mother Wanda, sister Reigndrop (through Eye Reign Ent.) and brother Ron (via Free Spirit Entertainment)-participated as co-executive producers.
Reigndrop worked on three album tracks, including the rock-vibed "Neva Will Eye Eva." Recalls Reigndrop, "I do rock music and she [Lisa] wanted to do rock next. We were going to work together on that. While it's impossible for us to have done this album exactly the way she would, I think it's very close. She would be happy."
The Lopes family also plans to release a second posthumous album. "There are more masters," says Ron. "Some tracks that Lisa recorded need to be tracked down; it's like finding a needle in a haystack. But there is enough to do another album."
Full Track Listing for 'Eye Legacy':
1. "Spread Your Wings" feat. Free
2. "In the Life" feat. Bobby Valentino
4. "Let's Just Do It" feat. TLC and Missy Ellioitt
5. "Block Party" feat. Lil Mama
7. "Bounce" feat. Chamillionaire and Bone Crusher
8. "Let It Out" feat. Wanya Morris (of Boyz II Men)
9. "Through the Pain" feat. Ryan Toby and Claudette Ortiz (of City High)
11. "Neva Will Eye Eva" feat. Reigndrop Lopes
1. "Let's Just Do It" (remix) feat. TLC and Missy Elliott
2. "Crank It" feat. Reigndrop Lopes