"Silly Ho" cover
|Promotional single by TLC from the album FanMail|
|Released||December 29, 1998|
"Silly Ho" is a song recorded by American R&B girl group TLC for their third studio album FanMail (1999). The song was written and produced by TLC's long-time collaborator Dallas Austin and was produced under his artificial intelligence alter ego pseudonym named Cyptron.
Instead of Lisa "Left Eye" Lopes's vocals being on the song due to a busy schedule, Vic-E, the then temporary voice-based fourth member for the group's FanMail era, makes an appearance on the rap verse and ad-libs.
It was sent to radio as a promotional single prior to the release of FanMail and managed to reach number twenty-one on the Billboard Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart. The song also peaked at number fifty-nine on the Hot 100.
It received mixed reviews from music critics, whom complimented the track itself but criticizing its misleading feminism lyrics.
It was also featured on several compilation albums.
"Silly Ho" is a R&B-techno song that built on a foundation of "annoying sonic" burrs and "cutesy chop-suey" synths. The song along with "I'm Good At Being Bad" were said to crank up the "raunch level" for the girls. Two authors Kerry Mallan and Sharyn Pearce analyzed its content in their book Youth Cultures: Texts, Images, and Identities:
"[The song] describes the narrator as a woman who has never relied on her partner to buy her what she wants. Indeed the narrator describes how she bought her own rings, so overturning the conventional associations of rings with romance. Such a position of autonomy is compared with the sexual obligation incurred by the "silly ho" who will do whatever is required by her new."
With the lyrics: ”I ain’t never been no silly bitch/ Waiting to get rich/ From a nigga bank account,” which David Browne from Entertainment Weekly points out they were talking about taking control of their own finances. However, Complex's Julianne Escobedo Shepherd said the track's message was one of total independence, "and not playing one's self out to sit at the feet of a dude." Jet agreed, the publication noticed the song's similar message to "No Scrubs", but more about "a kind of female who can't get her life together." Vic-E then raps "You know you can't get with this.../ Stuck on silly shit/ Boy you know you need to quit" before declaring "[she's] out" on the bridge of the song.
In a retrospective review by Complex's Julianne Escobedo Shepherd, she said Austin was doing his best Timbaland imitation of Aaliyah's "Are You That Somebody?" on the track. Billboard's writer Chuck Taylor also compared the twos, questioning the song is whether a throwaway track to stir interest before knowing if they have made any true progress.
Release and commercial performance
American musician Girl Talk took samples of the song for his mash-up track "All Eyes on Me" on the album Unstoppable (2004). In 2016, Canadian producer Jåmvvis covers the song with a new jazz-influenced, sax-heavy, bass driven redition.
Silly Ho/Hat 2 Da Back/Kick Yo Game (Super Bowl Blitz '14)
Formats and track listings
|US Billboard Hot 100||59|
|US Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs (Billboard)||21|
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- Lansky, Sam (June 25, 2013). "TLC Perform Hits Medley & Accept Legend Award At MTV International VMAs: Watch". Idolator. Hive Media. Retrieved December 4, 2016.
- "TLC — Silly Ho (Promotional US CD)". Discogs. Retrieved November 28, 2016.
- "TLC — Silly Ho (Promotional US 12" vinyl)". Discogs. Retrieved November 28, 2016.
- "TLC – Chart history" Billboard Hot 100 for TLC. Retrieved 2013-01-19.
- "TLC – Chart history" Billboard Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs for TLC. Retrieved 2013-01-19.