Steve Erkle was on TV like six times daily, and Lauren Hill was the Cat’s Meow and the Heir Apparent to Music royalty, but now that it’s year 2010, you may be asking yourself where are some of those people? What happened? We all know that both television and radio has changed in the past ten-fifteen years. New stars have rose while other celebrities have fallen off or moved to another planet seems like. What happened to these people? Do you remember some of your 1990s artists and early childhood stars?
1990s Ghost Artists
5. Lauryn Hill
You all remember Lauryn Hill. She established her reputation in the hip hop world as a member of the Fugees. The Refugee Camp, formed by Prakazrel “Pras” Michel approached Hill in high school about joining his music group. Later, she met his cousin Wyclef Jean that would eventually lead to a compicated relationship between the two. In 1998, she launched her solo career with the album, “The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill.” The album gave Hill five Grammy Awards. But where is she now? According to USA Today in 2005, she said that if she makes music now, it will only be to provide information to her children. January 23, 2010, Hill performed at Raggamuffin in Rotorua, New Zealand which is a music festival that celebrates reggae music. Does a world with Fergie and the Black Eyed Peas need a Lauren Hill or The Fugees? Probably not.
Artis Leon Ivey, Jr. aka “Coolio,” is a rapper who rose to fame in 1994 with his debut single “Fantastic Voyage,” and in 1995 with the hit single, “Gangsta’s Paradise.” The hit single appeared on the soundtrack for the film, “Dangerous Minds.” His first album, “It Takes a Thief,” reached the top 10 of the pop charts and #8 on the Billboard Hot 200. His second album, “Gangsta’s Paradise,” went quadruple platinum. It was his most successful album. But where is he now? According to gadling.com, March 2009, the former Grammy Award winning artist was held at a Los Angelos airport for possession of crack cocaine. Do we miss him in a world where Snoop Dog Reins supreme . . .nah.
The first group featured Terrell Phillips, Eric Williams, Mark Middleton, Levi Little, and Joseph Stonestreet. Their first released single was in 1993 to the movie, “CB4,” starring Chris Rock, titled, “Baby Be Mine.” Their first album, “Blackstreet,” was a success due to singles, “Booti Call,” “Before I Let You Go.” But in 1996, their album, “Another Level,” was a breakthrough success due to the hit single, “No Diggity,” with Dr. Dre which became a #1 hit on the Billboard Hot 100 in November 1996 and won the 1998 Grammy Award for Best R&B Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocals. But where are they now? The group now consists of Teddy Riley, Chauncey Hannibal, Dave Hollister, and Sherman “J-Stylz” Tisdale. The last major performance the group took place in was the New Jack Reunion Tour in 1996, a concert that featured members of the 90s music genre. The world simply didn’t need another boy band, and especially not one with any more depth than a guilty pleasure . . .and when the rumors of New Edition reunions swirled Black Street really became . . .unexciting. The world’s a better place with them, but sadly no one is paying attention.
2. Vanilla Ice
Robert Matthew Van Winkle aka Vanilla Ice is a rapper who released his debut album, “Hooked,” in 1989. His first hip hop single to hit the top Billboard charts was, “Ice Ice Baby.” His best selling album that released in 1990,”To the Extreme,” became the fastest selling album of all time, peaking at #1 on the Billboard 200. The album spent 16 weeks on the charts and sold 11 million copies. But what goes up, comes back down and soon his audience began to see him as a novelty act and his career began to decline. So where is Mr. Vanilla Ice? Well January 2010, he performed with Jedward singing, “Under Pressure,” and, “Ice Ice Baby,” at the National Television Awards in South East London. Could this performance be his debut comeback? Not likely. Van Winkle is actually far more intelligent and talented that he gets credit for, but he has a destructive personality and is difficult to work with. Although some stars appear to be “Loose Cannons” for marketing purposes, the reality is no body wants to invest in “chance.” Clean it Up Up baby and there might finally be something there bro. Word to your mother.
1. Tevin Campbell
The R&B singer hit the charts when he debuted his first single, “Tomorrow (A Better You, A Better Me),” which reached #1 on the Billboard Hot R&B/Hip hop singles in 1990. It was the lead single from Quincy Jones’ LP, “Back on the Block,” which won the Grammy Award for Album of the Year in 1991. Campbell’s first solo, “Round and Round,” was charted at #3 on R&B charts in November 1991 and #13 on the Billboard Hot 100 in April 1991. His second album, “I’m Ready,” released in October 1991, was #1 R&B hit and #9 pop single, “Can We Talk,” in December 1993. But where is Mr. Campbell now? In 2009, Campbell made an appearance at the 2009 BET Awards to pay a tribute to the O’Jays with Trey Songs, Tyrese, and Johnny Gill.
Early Childhood Stars
5. Cameron Finley
Some of you may remember this kid. He appeared in his first movie, “A Perfect World,” in 1993 directed by Clint Eastwood, and his second movie, “What’s Eating Gilbert Grape,” in 1993 starring Johnny Depp and Leonardo DiCaprio. He also was featured in, “Hope Floats,” in 1998 that starred Sandra Bullock. “Leave it to Beaver,” in 1997 played the main role in this movie as Beaver. Where is this young man now? According to the internet movie database, Finley graduated from Moorpark High School in 2005 and planned to attend Moorpark College as a Molecular Biology major. He currently is not acting.
4. Mason Gamble
Everybody’s knows this kid! Gamble starred in the movie, “Dennis the Menace,” in 1993 as Dennis Mitchell. We all loved that movie! Gamble later appeared in other shows such as, “ER (1997),” “Close to Home (2005),” and “CSI Miami (2006).” But where is this kid now? In 2008, Gamble played the lead role as Michael Murphy in the movie, “Golf in the Kingdom,” based from Michael Murphy’s classic novel, “Golf in the Kingdom.”
3. Tahj Mowry
TGIF!! What a way to relax on fridays back in the day as we watched many sitcoms on television. One of those sitcoms featured the young Tahj Mowry in, “Smart Guy.” He became best known from the role he played as T.J. Henderson. The TV series ran on Warner Brothers for three seasons from April 2, 1997 to May 16, 1999. He also played Teddy on the sitcom, “Full House.” But since those shows, what is he doing now? According to mahalo.com, in 2003, he left Hollywood to play football at Savannah State University and also University of Wyoming. He last was known to attend Pepperdine University in Malibu.
2. Jaleel White
“Did I do that?” You remember the famous “oops” phrase Steve Urkel always said in the sitcom show, “Family Matters,” a show about a middle-class African American family living in Chicago. Jaleel White played the role of Steve Urkel and Stefan Urquelle. Another one of your TGIF’s sitcoms that had you falling to the floor with laughs. But where is Mr. White now? In September 2009, White guest starred on the USA Network series Psych, as a college singing buddy of the character Gus.
1. Macaulay Culkin
The two crooks in the movie, “Home Alone,” could never catch this kid! He was too smooth for them. Macaulay Culkin played Kevin McCallister in Home Alone and Home Alone 2: Lost in New York. He was considered to be the most successful child actor since Shirley Temple. He was ranked #2 by Entertainment Television (E) and VH1 in their list of “50 Greatest Child Stars,” and, “100 Greatest Kid-Stars.” But where is he now? On August 17, 2009, Culkin made a surprising appearance on WWE Raw during a match between Hornswoggle and Chavo Guerrero. Is the actor’s next move to become a wrestler?