accessAtlanta

City & State or ZIP Tonight, this weekend, May 5th...
City & State or ZIP
City & State or ZIP Tonight, this weekend, May 5th...
City & State or ZIP

Atlanta-based Bounce TV, Chilli of TLC, celebrates Don Cornelius Saturday

Chilli is hosting a Bounce TV celebration of Don Cornelius Saturday. CREDIT: Ben Evans, courtesy of Trea Day

Chilli is hosting a Bounce TV celebration of Don Cornelius Saturday. CREDIT: Ben Evans, courtesy of Trea Day

Bounce TV, the new Atlanta-based broadcast network targeting blacks, is holding a special seven-hour “Soul Train” marathon Saturday from 7 to 2 a.m. in honor of the late Don Cornelius, who was found dead Tuesday with a gunshot in his head.

Police have ruled it a suicide.

This sad ending to a legend’s life hasn’t dimmed people’s memories of him and the impact his show has had on blacks and society at large.

The network hired Atlanta’s Rozonda “Chilli” Thomas of TLC as the host, providing interesting facts and memories of Cornelius. Her segments, which will close and open each episode, were taped Thursday. Some of the acts you’ll see include Kool & the Gang, Gladys Knight & the Pips and En Vogue.

“I put a little of my Chilli sauce on it,” she said by phone today. “I did my best impression of Don Cornelius.  I can’t my voice that low but I tried!”

Chilli remembers growing up watching “Soul Train” every Saturday, eager to learn the dance moves and groove to the latest tunes. Her favorite dancer was Cheryl Song, the Asian American woman with the extra long hair.

“My hair was long but not that long,” she said. “I’d wrap a towel around my head and it would be down to my butt.”

And of course, she cherished the “Soul Train” line.

She was thrilled 20 years ago when TLC performed for the first time on the show. (She thinks it was “What About Your Friends.”) She recalled how tall Cornelius was. “I was so happy to see him in person,” she said. “It was surreal!”  She didn’t get a shot to dance on the “Soul Train” line, though.

In other Chilli news, she is working with others on a script for an upcoming VH1 biopic on the life and times of TLC.

Casting has not begun yet but she said neither she nor Tionne “T-Boz” Watkins will be playing themselves. “We’re executive producers, totally behind the scenes,” she said.  She plans to cast newcomers.

“The story will focus on the three of us,” she said, including the late Lisa “Left Eye” Lopes, who died in a car accident in 2002. We’re going to provide some intimate things we’ve never talked about before.” She expects the film will cover the time they got together as TLC to present day.

She is also waiting for scripts from VH1’s ‘Single Ladies.” She expects to be in a few episodes again. The first season, she played a fictional version of herself in three episodes as a friend of LisaRaye McCoy. (She felt creator Stacy Littlejohn captured her spirit well.) Production for season two has just begun here in Atlanta.

I also asked her about how T-Boz is doing since she filed for bankruptcy last fall. “She’s doing great,” Chilli said. “She’s in Los Angeles working on some different projects, including the movie.”

And after two seasons of VH1’s “What Chilli Wants,” Chilli said she remains a single woman. “One of these days,” she said, with a sigh, “a miracle will happen!”

Tyrese, the hot R&B star, recently asked her to be in his video with him for his song “Nothing On You.” It comes out Valentine’s Day. You can watch the trailer here.  She said he’s just a friend, though.

Join my Facebook fan page and Twitter.

By Rodney Ho, Radio & TV Talk

13 comments Add your comment

[...] more Atlanta-based Bounce TV, Chilli of TLC, celebrates Don Cornelius Saturday at Radio & TV Talk… Follow ATLboy on Facebook >> /* * * CONFIGURATION [...]

Rita Lawson's boy, Rollo.

February 3rd, 2012
5:06 pm

Soul Train in the ‘70 & very early ‘80 was the $hit! All these young huckabucks won’t know nothing about them days.

Karla

February 3rd, 2012
5:20 pm

@ Rollo: You betta preach!

Stacey

February 3rd, 2012
5:47 pm

I love Bounce Network but I can only get it the TV that doesn’t have cable. Between the old Soul Train episodes and the original Fat Albert cartoons, I feel like I’m eight years old again.

LOLwut

February 3rd, 2012
6:30 pm

He went from Soul Train to Hole(in the)Brain.

MY MY MY !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

February 3rd, 2012
6:59 pm

LOL wut — that was a low blow , soul train was very groovie !!!!!!!!!!

romeo

February 3rd, 2012
7:39 pm

You know looking back at Soul Train 43 years ago I was 12 years old. I could not wait until 12 pm every saturday. Man we would get around the tv and dance and look at the clothes the kids were wearing at 12 they looked grown to me at the time. When the Jackson 5 were on the robot wow man those were some great times and the man who brought the part Mr. Don Cornelius RIP brother.One more thing about suicide in the black community. Black people do kill them selves and it happens all the time . We are no stronger than any other group of people when it comes to this very sad way of dying. So please look out for one and other I have lost three people in my family to suicide including my only son. It has nothing to do with what is going on with a person on the out side it is what is on the inside what you can’t see that is killing them. Most of the time there are signs or they may tell you that they are going to do it. There is no one way for all but pay attention to your loved onesThank You

ronnye

February 3rd, 2012
7:58 pm

Is that a COMCAST channe? What channel is it? Thanks.

Rodney Ho

February 3rd, 2012
8:14 pm

On Comcast, Bounce is at channel 244 (WATL-2)

[...] TLC’s Rozonda “Chilli” Thomas is hosting a seven-hour Soul Train marathon, Saturday, 7 p.m. to 2 a.m. in honor of the late, great Don Cornelius, reports the Atlanta Journal Constitution. [...]

[...] TLC’s Rozonda “Chilli” Thomas is hosting a seven-hour Soul Train marathon, Saturday, 7 p.m. to 2 a.m. in honor of the late, great Don Cornelius, reports the Atlanta Journal Constitution. [...]

Dean Daughtery

February 4th, 2012
2:16 pm

greenpeace uk wiki…

[...]I’ve offered totally every thing to Ironman above the earlier 5 years[...]…

[...] The network hired Atlanta’s Rozonda “Chilli” Thomasof TLC as the host, providing interesting facts and memories of Cornelius. Her segments, which will close and open each episode, were taped Thursday. Some of the acts you’ll see include Kool & the Gang, Gladys Knight & the Pips and En Vogue. More… [...]