*Lisa “Left Eye” Lopes from the four-time Grammy-winning singing group “TLC” has been dead 18 years, but memories of her talents linger on.
Yet, if there’s one thing that stands out more than her brilliant singing career, it is the incident on June 9, 1994, when she set fire to NFL star Andre Rison’s mansion in Atlanta, burning it to the ground. At the time, the two were girlfriend and boyfriend.
While Left Eye mentioned the fire numerous times during interviews through the years, another piece of the puzzle was made public when Pepa, of the Grammy-winning hip hop duo, “Salt-N-Pepa,” revealed some interesting things about the fire, Left Eye, and Rison, in her 2008 autobiography, “Let’s Talk About Pep.”
Pepa, whose real name is Sandy Denton, wrote:
“It just seemed that all of my problems revolved around men – even when it wasn’t my fault. Even when I wasn’t directly involved. One example of this was in 1994. I ended up in one of those National Enquirer type of magazines under a headline: “Is Pepa a Home Wrecker?” Remember the night Lisa (Left Eye) Lopes burned down the house of Andre Rison (former Atlanta Falcons wide receiver)? Well, I was sort of in the middle of that.
“Andre and I never messed around. I’m innocent of that crime. I am so innocent. But I did know him and we were really cool. Salt-N-Pepa used to do a lot of NFL spots for Monday Night Football. And we would do some NFL parties. I met Andre at one of those parties and we hit it off. We went bowling and were bugging out and laughing. I would bump into him from time to time at different clubs. And that was it.
“He told me later how everything went down. Apparently, he had been talking about me to her. Telling her how cool I was. Brothers, you can’t do that. Your girl will immediately be suspicious. Now, maybe he did like me like that, but again, we never went there. One night, he and Lisa are watching TV and my video comes on, and he gets all excited and says something like “Pep, that’s my girl!”
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Pepa said the night of the fire, “Salt-N-Pepa” was in concert in Atlanta and got Left Eye and Rison backstage passes. Somehow, Left Eye assumed that Pepa and Rison had been together. As result, Left Eye lit up Rison’s mansion, burning it to the ground.
Wow. Who knew.