On this day in Hip Hop history, Tone Lōc released his debut album, Lōc-ed After Dark.
Tone Lōc is one of the OGs of West Coast rap. He came out in the late 80s with a sound unlike what was poppin’ at the time in LA. On this album, Tone Lōc was able to synchronize his regional style with the 80s rap sound that came fresh from New York. This sound gave Tone Lōc ridiculous (and unexpected) pop fame and Lōc-ed After Dark became the second rap album to top the Billboard pop charts.
Two of the singles from the project are household names in the Hip Hop community. Both “Wild Thing” and “Funky Cold Medina” made appearances in the Top 5 of the Billboard Hot 100. “Wild Thing” hit #2 and “Funky Cold Medina” hit #3. both singles also went platinum, with Wild Thing hitting the double platinum mark. The third single from the project, “I Got It Goin’ On,” did not receive as much commercial success as the other two but peaked at #18 on the Billboard Hip Hop/R&B chart.
At the 1989 Grammy’s this album earned Tone Lōc two nominations: one for Best Rap Solo Performance for “Funky Cold Medina” and Best New Artist.
Tone Lōc’s signature raspy deep voice was the key to his success. That coupled with this smooth lyrics and funky beats enabled him to reach the success that he did. His personality also helped him climb the industry ladder. As a result of this album’s success Tone Lōc was able to expand his reach and dabble into acting. He’s credited with a plethora of film appearances throughout the 90s, including Poetic Justice with Tupac Shakur and Janet Jackson, Fern Gully: The Last Rainforest, Bebe’s Kids, and Ace Ventura: Pet Detective with Jim Carrey. He even had his own cartoon called C-Bear and Jamal that ran for two years.
This #1 album was the starting point of one of the biggest stars in Hip Hop during the early 90s. Tone Lōc went on after Lōc-ed After Dark to have a successful career in entertainment. He released one more album in 1991 titled Cool Hand Lōc.