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Legendary singing group TLC has unexpectedly canceled their upcoming tour, sparking concern among fans who feared it was linked to T-Boz‘s health and her battle with sickle cell anemia. Now the duo has taken to social media to personally reassure their fan base, clarifying that the tour’s cancellation was a business decision and not indicative of any health crisis.
Fans were responding to a recent post on the group’s Instagram page.
Across a picture of both Chilli and T-Boz read the following: “To our incredible Australian and New Zealand fans, with heavy hearts, we regret to announce the cancellation of our upcoming tour.”
“Unforeseen circumstances have made it impossible to proceed, and we sincerely apologize for any disappointment. to our fans,” the note continued, adding, “Your support means everything, and we promise to make it up to you. We can’t wait to be back in your beautiful countries soon. Thank you for your understanding and love.”
TLC had initially planned to commence their tour, one that will celebrate the 1994 chart-topper “CrazySexyCool,” in March, with scheduled stops in the Australian cities of Adelaide, Sydney, Brisbane, and Perth. The renowned ’90s girl group En Vogue was also expected to accompany them on the tour, alongside hip-hop veteran Busta Rhymes.
Immediately, fans hopped in the comment section not only to express their disappointment but also their fears that something might have happened to the contralto lead.
“I am so sad! But more importantly, I hope everyone is ok,” a comment read. Others were more specific, saying, “I hope everything is ok with T-Boz,” while another asked, “Is Tionne ok?”
T-Boz, born Tionne Watkins, suffers from sickle cell disease, a heritable blood disorder that impacts red blood cells. She has been living with the disease since her diagnosis at 7 years old. In interviews over the span of her career, she has said she has to “worry about it every day,” and sometimes the pain is so much that she is “delirious.”
Her fans, who have been following her career since the 1990s, were concerned at news of the canceled tour. After gossip outlets got wind of the concerns, she and her group member chimed in.
First T-Boz, the lead singer and writer on “Unpretty,” said, “Thx but I’m JUST FINE!!! Great actually! Just bcuz I hv Sockle cell doesn’t mean I’m SICK all the time!!! My name was no where in that article! It was for business reasons ONLY!”
Then her partner Chilli wrote, “Tionne is not sick..she’s doing great! And we’re excited about our tour in Japan, March 16th.”
Despite the reassurance from the two members encouraging their fans to stay calm, there is a valid cause for concern. Complications from sickle cell pose a potential threat to the former LaFace singer’s life.
The singer shared a story in her memoir, “A Sick Life,” about her breastfeeding her daughter Chase in 2000.
“On the first night, the nurses told me I needed to breastfeed her. It seemed like the right thing to do. And they make you feel so guilty if you don’t pop your t—–s out for the baby immediately,” T-Boz wrote. “But sickle-cell patients need every drop of fluid they can get, and losing that much breast milk almost stopped my heart.”
“Eventually, my body shut down, and I fell into a coma,” she continued, adding, “I spent three days unconscious in the ICU.”
TLC is one of the best-selling female R&B groups. The group formed as a trio in Atlanta, GA in the 1990s along with late founding member, Lisa “Left Eye” Lopez. Lopez died in a car crash whileon vacation in Peru in 2002 just weeks before her 31st birthday.
T-Boz, Left Eye, & Chilli (TLC) pic.twitter.com/K5FP2rXaaF
— Huey K. Bridgeforth (@hkb73) January 16, 2024