Whatever Happened To The 'Thong Song' Guy?

Sisqó was an icon. Not only did he release one of the best butt anthems of all time, "Thong Song," but he taught a generation of middle schoolers about the birds and the bees (or at least helped them figure out that underwear didn't have to be emblazoned with days of the week). For all his success — like the Grammy award and his numerous No. 1 singles — he's often relegated to the territory of one-hit wonders when that's not at all the case.

At the heart of it, Sisqó is a true artist who puts deep thought into his work. Yes, even including his song about ladies' underwear which had a string arrangement inspired by Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov's "The Flight of the Bumblebee" and the Star Wars theme song. Sadly, he seemed to fall out of the spotlight shortly after penning his seminal hit and becoming a 22-year-old millionaire. Why? Sisqó never played the industry game. In an episode of Oprah: Where Are They Now? he admitted that having a Robin Hood approach to his success — hiring relatives and friends rather than seasoned professionals with connections — really hurt his career (via HuffPost).

Despite his setbacks, the dragon remains unleashed. The platinum-haired singer has taken his platinum hits and crafted a legacy that's still kicking today. Here's what he's been up to since his iconic single gave girls something to wear beneath their Juicy Couture velour sweatsuits.

He's still touring with Dru Hill

Sisqó didn't start out as a butt-worshiping pop star. Before he ever unleashed the dragon, he performed with an R&B group called Dru Hill. Dru Hill's success may have been overshadowed by Sisqó's solo career, but their hits went just as platinum as his iconic hairstyle. After signing to Island Records imprint University Records in the mid-1990s, the group regularly topped the pop charts with singles like "Never Make a Promise" and "In My Bed." Both became No. 1 hits on the U.S. R&B charts, and the latter was certified platinum.

"Thong Song" may have made Sisqó a millionaire at the age of 22, but Dru Hill's career long outlasted the solo project — even surviving some label drama. The band released their last album InDRUpendence Day in 2010, which didn't exactly fly off the shelves. But it wasn't fully the band's fault. Kedar Entertainment Group allegedly failed to pay out the $300,000 they planned to spend on marketing. According to TMZ, Sisqó and Dru Hill filed a lawsuit to get out of the contract after the label refused to pay a dime in royalties. Despite the album's drama, Dru Hill embarked on a massive 20-year anniversary tour in 2017. The tour continued adding dates through 2018, and the group played up the '90s angle, performing with acts like Mya and Ginuwine.

He released his final album in 2015

Sisqó's musical journey doubled as a quest to raise underwear awareness, and, when he finally found the perfect thong sticking out of a miniskirt that was so scandalous, he knew his mission was complete. The singer jokingly admitted that Halle Berry's perfect bottom at the 2000 MTV Movie Awards made him quit the biz.

"The one that stuck out to me the most was a long time ago, when Beyoncé and I hosted the MTV Movie Awards pre-show. Halle Berry had one peeking out of the back of her miniskirt. That's when I disappeared from music. I was done," he told InStyle (via Yahoo!). "I had seen all I needed to see!"

It is with sadness that Sisqó announced that the dragon actually flapped his thong-adored wing for the last time in 2015. Though it felt like the singer quit his solo act after 2001's Return of the Dragon failed to achieve the same success as his debut, he had one more go before hanging it up for good. Last Dragon, his final solo album, was met with pretty poor reviews (if only because nothing could possibly live up to "Thong Song"), and Rolling Stone basically labeled it as the musical equivalent of a shrug ("at least he's spending more time making records than swapping wives, for once"). Cold, but not totally wrong.

He finally explained that whole 'dumps like a truck' thing

"She has dumps like a truck, truck, truck" really did have guys going, "Wait, what?" Mostly because nobody knew what the heck it actually meant. The controversial lyric (that we all undoubtedly sang at the top of our lungs anyway) was arguably one of the most polarizing lines of '90s pop music. There was the camp that thought Sisqó was just celebrating a giant backside and the camp whose sixth-grade sense of humor inevitably gravitated towards poop (seriously, do you expect anything less for a song that taught pre-teens across America about sexy undies?). Worse yet, the platinum-haired singer let the general public spend 16 years marinating on the subject — long enough for us to graduate from college and have children — before finally throwing us a bone.

In 2016, Sisqó revealed that the line was not, in fact, about poop.

"That would mean I was some kind of fecal freak," he told the Huffington Post. "What I was really referring to was ― a dump truck when it backs up, it's like, 'beep, beep beep.' So, 'she had dumps like a dump truck' is, like, when girls do a booty dance move and they look back at their butt. She's like a dump truck back-back-backing it up."

Whatever you say, Sisqó.

He gave 'Thong Song' a makeover in 2017

"Thong Song" was an instant classic, and it will remain that way as long as people love butts. Basically, society could have advanced to the point where the Earth was destroyed and the rich are jet-setting back and forth to Mars, and we'd still be playing "Thong Song" in our spaceships. And Sisqó knew it was going to be a massive hit before it was even recorded.

"I was thinking about that when I made it," he told the Huffington Post. "That's why we use those classical strings in the beginning. Much like the Renaissance period of art and music ... that music and art is still appreciated today."

Sisqó may very well be a modern renaissance man, but recording technology changes so fast that it can make older songs sound a little dated — but not under Sisqó's watch. In 2017, he reimagined his iconic backside anthem as an EDM song so an entirely new generation of middle schoolers can awkwardly grind on the dance floor.

The remix is slick and devoid of campy arrangements, which seems to suit an era where pre-teens are YouTube beauty experts, never suffering through a phase of cakey, orange foundation and over-plucked eyebrows. Still, without the kitsch of the original, it doesn't really give that same warm and fuzzy feeling (like the one we get looking back on the army of butterfly clips that peppered our junior high yearbooks).

He never married, but he's been with his girlfriend for well over a decade

Sisqó's love life is an anomaly in the world of Hollywood. The singer met Elizabeth Pham in 2003, after he was arrested alongside his then-girlfriend Tera Thomas for allegedly firing shots at a parked car (via MTV News). Though both Thomas and Sisqó were charged with various degrees of assault and resisting arrest, it wasn't really a Bonnie and Clyde type situation. The pair split shortly after, and Sisqó fell into the arms of his good friend. The rest is history.

Pham and Sisqó never married, but they've remained solid for well over a decade (and Sisqó's seemed to cool it on the crime). In fact, Pham still gushes over the "Thong Song" singer.

"After 10 years together, Sisqo and I are still best friends," Pham admitted in a 2013 ABC blog post. "Our relationship is based on love and trust and when he's not working we spend every minute together. Although Sisqo and I are more in love now than the day we met, we're in no rush to tie the knot."

The pair have two children – a girl and a boy — and live a quiet life in Maple Grove, MN. Sisqó also has an adult daughter, Shaione Andrews, whom he fathered in high school and whom he cast in the infamous video for "Thong Song." 

When he went on 'Celebrity Wife Swap,' it was eerily familiar

In 2013, Sisqó finally made the transition into reality TV and starred in an episode of Celebrity Wife Swap. Somehow, it felt like it was only a matter of time. Though Sisqó wasn't married to Pham, they proceeded to slay their episode, which became the highest rated of the season. So, how did they hone in on their Wife Swap prowess? Well, Sisqó's been through it before.

In an interview with Rolling Stone, the early 2000s icon admitted that it all went down with the subject of his infamous butt-waving hit. Before he dated the subject of "Thong Song," he was dating a different woman while she dated another celeb. Ultimately, Sisqó and the unnamed celeb ended up inadvertently trading significant others.

"Before Celebrity Wife Swap, I was on Thot Swap," he joked.

Unfortunately, Sisqó never revealed the true identities of these mysterious celebs, but he claimed one of them is one of the "premier artists" in pop music. Perhaps he'll divulge the details in another 16 years.

He let us see that thong on Celebrity Big Brother

Sisqó's career as a reality star didn't stop at Celebrity Wife Swap. He joined the cast of Celebrity Big Brother for season 7. Though Big Brother is a reality TV staple with a reputation that rivals some original reality hits like Survivor and Real World, Sisqó put the icing on the cake by finally letting us see that thong.

In one episode, housemates competed for the title of "Hunk of the House." Sisqó, who allegedly consumes just 1,200 calories a day to maintain his sleek physique, wasn't going to let someone else win. Tossing caution to the wind and livin' la vida loca, he slipped on an itty, bitty bottom and took home the prize.

"I was at a crossroads. I had to think to myself: If I don't do this, I'm going to be that black guy that's like, 'Oh, hell no!' I was determined to win," he told Rolling Stone. "And as far as the women were concerned, I got the greatest a** on the planet."

According to Sisqó, he looked so good in his thong that judges thought he stuffed the front.

He may or may not have a love child

Sisqo may be happily unmarried to Elizabeth Pham, living a low-key lifestyle, but there was once some baby mama drama. In 2009, 25-year-old Swiss resident Jamila Farid claimed that the singer knocked her up while touring Europe in 1999. She was just 14 years old at the time. According to The Daily Mail, she snuck into a nightclub called the El Cubanito, where Sisqó, reportedly 31 years old at the time, allegedly lured her back to his hotel room. The paper reports that Sisqó allegedly never mentioned using a condom to the young girl, who didn't reveal her actual age to the singer.

"'I couldn't believe it was happening to me," she told The Daily Mail. "[Dru Hill] were a huge band at the time and I loved the 'Thong Song.'"

According to Farid, she finally got the chance to confront Sisqó about her child when she saw him at another Dru Hill show. He allegedly invited her up to his room again, which she declined without mentioning her son. Since then, Sisqó has allegedly refused numerous DNA tests, which caused the Swiss government to rule that he's the child's actual father. Farid claimed she's not after his money and just wants her child to know his father (via Digital Spy). However, child support services are claiming Sisqó's on the hook for over $137,000 in child support back-payments. 

Sisqó has long denied Farid's claims.

His imposter conned New York Fashion Week in 2017

In a bizarre move that could only happen in the age of the Internet, Sisqó got totally punk'd at fashion week in 2017. Apparently, while the singer was busy enjoying the finer things in life (playing a gig in the Meatpacking District), a pretty convincing imposter was was livin' la vida loca by charming his way into exclusive fashion week parties and sitting front row. Yes, Sisqó is so iconic that he's still worth a front row seat in 2017.

According to Page Six, Sham Sisqó donned a Versace suit with the singer's infamous platinum 'do and faked his way into the front row of shows by Philipp Plein and Vivienne Tam. He even attended Kanye West's presentation.

Eventually, the real Sisqó's crew connected the dots when Sham Sisqó tried to board a private jet to the Caribbean. His passport revealed his real name, Gavin Barnes. The con artist told Page Six that he was furious — but not for the reasons you'd think. "I never said I was Sisqó. People thought I was him, and that wasn't cool," he said.

Sisqó's manager Jeff Allen had a good laugh, however, asking the gossip rag what Barnes' manager looked like.

He recorded a duet with Marie Osmond

She's a little bit country, he's a little bit ... well, Sisqó. In the collaboration to end all weird collaborations, Sisqó teamed up with '70s icon Marie Osmond for a country duet on her 2016 album Music Is Medicine. This was a bizarre departure for Osmond, who rose to fame with her 1979 variety series Donny & Marie. Who better to fill Donny's shoes than a singer famous for being the authority on G-string underwear? 

In an interview with Billboard, Osmond revealed that the Sisqó spot came about last minute. She was recording a feel-good song with a rap that gave nods to Prince, Judy Garland, and Alabama. Her engineer told her Sisqó was next door, and they figured they'd just ask him to lay something down. The worst he could say was no.

"He heard it, said let's do it, and we did it. It was so cool, and to have him on the song made it come alive," she said. "He came over and nailed it in less than an hour. That's a true artist."

Yes, his hair is still platinum blond

Sisqó isn't Sisqó without his signature platinum blond hair, which perfectly matched his all-white get-up in the "Thong Song" music video. If there's any question that matters about what his life is like after finding massive fame, it's "Is his hair still blond?" You bet it is.

Though Sisqó may have left the all-white outfit in the past alongside Von Dutch trucker hats, he has never given up his signature 'do. In fact, he claims that it was the product of witnessing the sheer beauty of a G-string for the first time.

In an interview with InStyle (via Yahoo!), the artist joked that his hair was stripped white the moment he laid his eyes on a thong.

"It was one of the most glorious things I've ever seen in my life ... I think that was when my hair turned blond," he said. "It was like in The Ten Commandments, when Moses went to go see the burning bush and came back down and his head was silver."