Tony! Toni! Toné!: The Soul Trio Bringing Oakland Funk to the Stage Again

For the first time in a quarter century, Tony! Toni! Toné! -- the Oakland-born funk-soul trio of brothers D'wayne Wiggins and Raphael Saadiq, plus their cousin Timothy Riley -- are doing it again. Join us as we delve into the roots of their iconic sound, the making of their chart-topping hits, and their lasting impact on R&B and hip-hop.

The Roots of Oakland Funk

Explore the origins of Tony! Toni! Toné!'s unique sound rooted in the vibrant music scene of Oakland.

The roots of Tony! Toni! Toné!'s soulful funk sound can be traced back to the vibrant music scene of Oakland. In the late 1960s, Oakland became a hub for African American musicians who fused rock, soul, blues, and gospel into a distinctive style. Acts like The Chambers Brothers and Sly and The Family Stone paved the way for the emergence of Oakland funk.

With influences ranging from James Brown's groundbreaking rhythms to the psychedelic rock-soul fusion of Sly and The Family Stone, Tony! Toni! Toné! developed their own bohemian, Afro-centric spin on R&B. Their music, infused with percussion loops and multi-layered production, created a unique musical imprint that would define the 1990s and beyond.

The Making of 'Feels Good'

Discover the story behind Tony! Toni! Toné!'s iconic hit 'Feels Good' and how it became a dance-friendly anthem.

Released in 1990, 'Feels Good' remains one of Tony! Toni! Toné!'s most beloved and dance-friendly songs. The track was born out of an homage to Sly and The Family Stone's 'If You Want Me To Stay,' blending eighth and sixteenth notes on the bass with a breakbeat sampled from Lyn Collins' 'Think' and James Brown's 'Funky President'.

The song took shape organically in the studio, with D'Wayne Wiggins bringing in a group of people holding balloons, adding a festive atmosphere to the recording. The track's infectious energy and catchy hooks captured the essence of the moment and continue to resonate with audiences today.

R&B and Hip-Hop Inspirations

Explore the fusion of R&B and hip-hop influences in Tony! Toni! Toné!'s music and their collaborations with iconic artists.

Tony! Toni! Toné! found inspiration in both the R&B ballads of their predecessors and the booming hip-hop culture of the early 1990s. Their love ballads, such as 'It Never Rains (In Southern California)' and 'Anniversary,' drew from the soulful sound of acts like Al Green and Earth, Wind and Fire.

At the same time, their music incorporated the gritty edge of hip-hop, with influences from artists like A Tribe Called Quest and Ice Cube. This fusion of R&B and hip-hop elements gave Tony! Toni! Toné!'s music a modern twist while staying true to their love ballad roots.

Tony! Toni! Toné!'s 'Romantic' Legacy

Experience the timeless appeal of Tony! Toni! Toné!'s romantic love ballads and their ability to create emotional connections through music.

One of the defining aspects of Tony! Toni! Toné!'s music is their ability to create a romantic and soulful atmosphere through their love ballads. Songs like '(Lay Your Head on My) Pillow' and 'Thinking Of You' have a timeless appeal that continues to resonate with audiences.

These songs have the power to transport listeners to a place of emotional connection and intimacy. Tony! Toni! Toné!'s lush musical style, combined with their heartfelt lyrics, creates an uplifting experience where couples can slow dance and create spiritual connections.


Tony! Toni! Toné! has made a triumphant return to the stage after 25 years, bringing their iconic Oakland funk sound to audiences nationwide. Their music, rooted in the vibrant music scene of Oakland, has left an indelible mark on R&B and hip-hop. From their dance-friendly hits like 'Feels Good' to their romantic love ballads, Tony! Toni! Toné! continues to create an emotional connection with listeners.

As we celebrate their legacy and the impact they have had on the music industry, it's clear that Tony! Toni! Toné! remains a timeless and influential force in soul music. Their unique blend of funk, R&B, and hip-hop continues to inspire artists today, making them a true icon of the genre.

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