Come Back To The Five & Dime, Tone-Loc, Tone-Loc!


I'll be the first to admit that, back in the day, I may have been a little quick to dismiss Lōc-ed After Dark, the 1989 debut album by Los Angeles, California's very own Tone-Lōc. After all, it just seemed as if he wasn't there at all one day and he was everywhere the next as his debut single "Wild Thing" rocketed to #2 on the pop charts.

As a rapper, Tone-Loc was, by no means, of the rapid-fire variety, but what he may have lacked in speed and enunciation, he more than made up for with a laid-back confidence, as if to say, "Yo, what's the rush, let's just hang back and chill a bit."

Let us not also forget that Lōc-ed After Dark is also notable, if not downright historic, for being the first album to feature the production skills of The Dust Brothers, who would go on to cut a little record by the name of Paul's Boutique with the Beastie Boys later that same year.



Never mind that that record almost killed the Beastie Boys' career at the time, but has since come to be respected far and wide as one of the most groundbreaking hip-hop records ever made. As if the Dust Brothers' year wasn't already eventful enough, they also produced two tracks on Young MC's debut album, Stone Cold Rhymin'.

What makes Lōc-ed After Dark such a rich musical trip is the fact that it strictly adheres to the same musical template that made Run-DMC's King Of Rock such a landmark effort by sampling from mostly rock-based sources like Van Halen's "Jamie's Cryin", Foreigner's "Hot Blooded", and BTO's "You Ain't Seen Nothing Yet", among others.



Of course, just as responsible for his sudden rise to super-stardom was MTV's constant airplay of the "Wild Thing" video, which poked fun at Robert Palmer's "Addicted To Love" and was reportedly filmed for less than $500.

Second single "Funky Cold Medina" rose to #3 on the pop charts, ensuring that Lōc was no one-hit wonder, but that's where the gravy train ended.



While Lōc-ed After Dark had been a #1 hit, Lōc's massive fame would prove so fleeting that his follow up album two years later, Cool Hand Lōc, failed to even chart at all.

The rapper hasn't released any new music since, but will be seen this summer on the "I Love The 90's" tour with the likes of Salt N Pepa, Vanilla Ice, Coolio, Color Me Badd and others. Never mind that Lōc didn't actually have any hits in the '90s.




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