To call TLC’s “Waterfall” video iconic is almost underselling it. This award-winning video owned MTV back when that was a thing worthy of note and did it while addressing social issues like violence and HIV-awareness. The video stayed true to concept, used some CGI and showed our favorite girl group of the time in amazing fashion.
This video is so synonymous with the group that if you say TLC to somebody that is old enough to remember them in their heyday, they can probably visualize T-Boz, Left Eye and Chili with easy standing on top of the water.
Plus, the video featured Bokeem Woodbine, Shyheim and Ella Joyce (of Roc fame) well before she ever decided to sign on to be in Tyler Perry’s Temptation: Confessions of a Marriage Counselor.
Ultimately there’s something about a video done right that resonates. It suck because of the song and how the video looked and the stories it told, which in 1995 were relevant in ways that hadn’t been presented similarly by artists of the pop caliber. Some videos are iconic because they’re funny, some because they take the culture and art to new places. Others are iconic because they get the video so right that they become undeniably sticky for the culture. That last part is what TLC’s “Waterfalls” video was and is. Some videos are just good and for that reason last forever.
RIP, Lisa “Left Eye” Lopes.