Anyone who grew up in the 80s would have heard of Tone Loc. He had two major hits I can think of, one of which was Funky Cold Medina. If you haven’t heard of either Tone Loc or Funky Cold Medina, then you’ve lived a sheltered life and I pity you.
So I was listening to (okay I was enthusiastically singing along with) Funky Cold Medina on my way to work when it suddenly occurred to me that perhaps I’ve been wrong about this beverage of mystical abilities all along.
I’d always thought it was some magical drink he was giving out that made all the girls want him (and a quick Google search later proved I wasn’t the only one), but now I’m thinking it was something he drank that made him more attractive. Much less creepy than drugging his potential one-night stands.
Bear with me here as we step through the lyrics and the music video for the answers. Regular visitors may notice this isn’t the kind of thing I normally post, but when one is hit with an epiphany of this magnitude one must share it with the world.
Cold coolin’ at a bar, and I’m lookin for some action
But like Mick Jagger said, I can’t get no satisfaction
The girls are all around, but none of them wanna get with me
My threads are fresh and I’m lookin def, yo, what’s up with L-o-c?
So poor old Tone is sitting at the bar, unable to get any girls to even notice him. He’s unsure of the reason, because after a quick self-evaluation he finds that his threads are fresh and he’s looking def, so is completely baffled by the situation.
The girls is all jockin at the other end of the bar
Havin drinks with some no-name chump, when they know that I’m the star
So I got up and strolled over to the other side of the cantina
I asked the guy, “Why you so fly?” he said, “Funky Cold Medina”
Aha, so then he notices some loser at the other end of the bar hogging all the action. What’s Tone to do but to ask what the fellows secret is. You’ll notice that Tone asks “Why you so fly?” and not “Why are the girls unable to stop throwing themselves at you like you’ve drugged them?” which admittedly would have been difficult to rap.
Also, at this point in the video clip none of the girls are attempting to drink it. Rather they’re holding the glass and waving it about, as if bringing the “no-name chump” additional drinks. Obviously he needs to continually drink Funky Cold Medina to combat his chumpness.
After a quick break away to the chorus, we return to the narrative.
This brother told me a secret on how to get more chicks
Put a little Medina in your glass, and the girls’ll come real quick
It’s better than any alcohol or aphrodisiac
A couple of sips of this love potion, and she’ll be on your lap
So the secret is to put Funky Cold Medina in your glass, not the girls glass, and the girls will flock to you. So perhaps this “love potion” is more akin to a pheromone booster than some kind of creepy date-rape potion?
So I gave some to my dog when he began to beg
Then he licked his bowl and he looked at me and did the wild thing on my leg
Obviously not convinced, he decides a little animal testing is in order. He pours a measure for his dog who then humps his leg. Now from this ambiguous statement we’re left to infer that because the dog drank the Funky Cold Medina, he immediately had to hump Tone’s leg. Another way of looking at this is two separate incidents.
- One: Tone gave the dog some FCM.
- Two: The dog humped his leg.
There’s nothing here that implies that one action specifically led to the other. He could have just owned a horny dog.
He used to scratch and bite me, before he was much much meaner
Now his dog is getting laid more frequently, I’ve no doubt he’s a much friendlier dog.
But now all the poodles run to my house for the Funky Cold Medina
So “all the poodles run to my house for the Funky Cold Medina“… or perhaps the dog that drank it and is now irresistible to other dogs? Which would seem more likely than Tone’s dog telling the neighbourhood dogs about the Funky Cold Medina and the apparently causal leg sexy time.
You know what I’m sayin?
I got every dog in my neighborhood breakin down my door
I got Spuds McKenzie
Alex from Stroh’s
They won’t leave my dog alone with that Medina, pal
Again, we only know his dog drank the Funky Cold Medina. True, he’s got male dogs chasing after his male dog, but we can put this down to the fact that a dogs biology is likely different to our own. So moving on to Verse 3.
I went up to this girl, she said, “Hi, my name is Sheena”
I thought she’d be good to go with a little Funky Cold Medina
She said, “I’d like a drink,” I said, “Ehm – ok, I’ll go get it”
Then a couple sips she cold licked her lips, and I knew that she was with it
By this point “Sheena” is the only “woman” we’ve seen go to drink the Funky Cold Medina during the clip. The others so far have only held it and waved it around in the proximity of no-name chumps. Of course, because of what happens next it all makes sense if Funky Cold Medina is only supposed to be drunk by a man.
So I took her to my crib, and everything went well as planned
But when she got undressed, it was a big old mess, Sheena was a man
Presumably “Sheena” had also tried giving Funky Cold Medina to a dog and received similar results to Tone, but has not concluded that dog biology is different to humans. Therefore he gladly accepted the Funky Cold Medina from Tone on the assumption it’d make Tone unable to resist his charms later on.
So I threw him out, I don’t fool around with no Oscar Meyer wiener
You must be sure that the girl is pure for the Funky Cold Medina
Tone here basically verifies to us that it only works on ladies.
You know, ain’t no plans with a man
This is the 80s, and I’m down with the ladies, ya know?
Brushing past the fact he’s only “down with the ladies” because it’s the 80s (perhaps Sheena would have had better luck in the 90s?), we’ll move on to Verse 4.
Back in the saddle, lookin for a little affection
I took a shot as a contestant on “The Love Connection”
The audience voted, and you know they picked a winner
I took my date to the Hilton for Medina and some dinner
Note that he doesn’t specifically say that he’s giving the Funky Cold Medina to the lucky lady, only that he’ll be buying it during dinner or at some point during the night.
She had a few drinks, I’m thinkin soon what I’ll be gettin
Again, he doesn’t specifically say what drinks she had. Perhaps, and I think most likely by now, it was just standard booze? So between the booze and with Tone drinking the Funky Cold Medina he figures he’s in like Flynn.
Instead she started talkin ’bout plans for our wedding
I said, “Wait, slow down, love, not so fast says, I’ll be seein’ ya”
That’s why I found you don’t play around with the Funky Cold Medina
So the Funky Cold Medina worked too well and poor Tone freaks out. He bails on the date and apparently learns the valuable lesson of not mucking about with Funky Cold Medina. Perhaps on a future date he won’t drink it so liberally.
Ya know what I’m sayin
That Medina’s a monster, y’all
Or perhaps he’ll lay off it all together.
It’s worth mentioning as the author of this post that I’ve gone through two cassettes and one CD copy of Loc-ed After Dark in my life, so this blog is written with the upmost love and respect. 🙂
Update March 14th 2017
This post is now Tone Loc approved 🙂 Check out his response from Twitter below. Excuse me while I take a moment to fanboy quietly in the corner.