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A Conversation With Chris Reid

Chris Reid, aka Kid from Kid 'n Play, sat down with Giddy's Marisa Sullivan to discuss getting older and what his life looks like today. In this candid interview, Reid also recalls his parents' history—how his white mother began dating his Black father in the 1960s, resulting in her family disowning her. Reid says it was those early hardships that, in part, helped mold his late mother into the strong woman she was. That inner strength is a quality he has always admired—one shared by the other important women in his life.

These days, Reid says he sees that same strength reflected in his girlfriend and talks about how the two deal with conflict—and their resolve to never fight publicly. Reid also stays in close contact with some important ex-partners as well: the mothers of his children. He admits that his children's mothers are the hands-on, day-to-day parents, but says he does his part to support them when they need it.

Reid, 57, also recounts the changes he has experienced as he gets older. As far as Reid is concerned, "Sleep is the new sex." These differences aren't isolated to Reid, however. He highlights the difference between his peers when they were at the height of their fame in the '90s and when they reunited for the "I Love The 90's Tour."

The "House Party" actor also revealed his hit movie will get a reboot next summer and be produced by LeBron James' SpringHill Co.

Transcript

Marisa Sullivan (MS):

I’m Marisa Sullivan and I’m here with Chris Reid, aka Kid, from Kid n’ Play. I want to talk about your upbringing. So when did your dad come here? Your dad is from Jamaica and your mom’s from… Are they still alive?

Chris Reid (CR):

No. No no no.

MS:

And your mother was white. From where?

CR:

Yeah. My moms was a really cool white chick from the Bronx. Her parents were Irish. They were old school. Like no Black people, or that kind of shit. So when she started dating my dad, they disowned her. But she was like boom—she kept on pushing. But my dad was Jamaican. He came to the United States in 1948. First guy from the family off the island. He went to Howard University. He was one of the great Jamaican explorers. Him and my moms got together in the ‘60s in New York.

MS:

So what did your parents, with these different backgrounds… Did they talk to you about sex or respecting women? Did your dad respect your mother? Tell me what you grew up witnessing with relationships.

CR:

I was really fortunate. After my mom passed I went to live with my dad.

MS:

So they were divorced? Separated?

CR:

Oh they were never—

MS:

Oh they were never. Got it, OK. Which is fine.

CR:

This is hip hop, baby.

MS:

This is real life in any genre, baby!

CR:

My daddy was a player and my moms was too smart not to try to get with him. It was what it was.

MS:

And what did you learn from that? How did their relationship affect you?

CR:

You just kind of know what you know. I lived with my mom. She was really dominant. It felt like every other weekend pop do come get me.

MS:

So you like strong women?

CR:

That's all I knew. That’s all I’ve ever been around. That’s all that I’ve ever dated. That’s all I’ve known. I’m not one of those dudes that want to run it. I’m attracted to women that run it. Because I’ve gotta be me, you know what I’m saying?

MS:

When was your first sexual experience?

CR:

Where I'm from, my neighborhood in Queens, cats was jumpin off really early. Thirteen, 14. I wasn’t like that. But I lied. I lied. I was like 15, 16.

MS:

Oh and you told people you had had sex?

CR:

Yes. Yeah, I lied.

MS:

You felt the pressure to fit in. 'Cause they're early bloomers. And it was scary probably.

CR:

In my neighborhood and with the guys that I hung with, they really had did it. And I was like, "Yeah I did it." You know the whole thing, "Yeah, I got a girl, she just ain’t from around here." I was 17.

MS:

This is such a great point that you're bringing up. This happens. I’m sure this has happened since the beginning of time.

CR:

You know what they call it? They call it fake it till you make it. Now it's funny. I was lying the whole time.

MS:

So who was the first girl who actually struck you then? When did you first fall in love?

CR:

Oh, girl. So many times. Where do I start?

MS:

I know, same. I'm such a lover.

CR:

Every time. When you're young, you don't know. Every new thing is an adventure that rises or falls. Oh, you got your heart broke, you can't make it back. Next week you got new light. You know what I'm saying? That part was cool. The ups and downs will drive you crazy but that's what being young is about. We were young and we were resilient. I went through many more heartbreaks after that. You don't know when you're gonna bounce back. You've got cats that have been down for 30 years.

MS:

But all of a sudden you're touring. You've got NSYNC, Backstreet Boys, we've got you guys, TLC, Salt-N-Pepa. There’s a huge resurgence of all these '90s bands. It’s awesome.

CR:

Yeah exactly, 30 years later. On the I Love the 90's show, everybody gets along. We're all glad we're alive. "Oh my god, Tone, Coolio, you're alive!" One night Tone was on the stage and he had a shortness of breath. And I swear to god they had an oxygen tank on the side of the stage. In the '90s I never saw that, but when we're on the I Love the 90's show...

MS:

Yeah, you guys are all in your 50s and 60s.

CR:

Yeah, they got an oxygen tank right there. They got an EMT.

MS:

Does that give you anxiety seeing these people ready?

CR:

He's like, "I'm looking at you Young MC!"

MS:

Oh my god. They're giving away canes backstage.

CR:

If anybody falters, they falter now.

MS:

I know you do have a girlfriend. Are you a sweetheart? Do you do romantic things? What’s a typical date night that you like to do?

CR:

Sleep is the new sex.

MS:

OK, 57-year-old.

CR:

Exactly. Remember back in the days? It was always the guy wants to smash smash smash. And the girl was like, "Can't we just cuddle?"

MS:

Yeah and now it’s a role reversal.

CR:

Fast forward to today. The girl, she wanna smash, and I'm like, "Can we just cuddle?"

MS:

Do you think that’s the age or do you think that’s the shift in roles these days? The power.

CR:

It's both.

MS:

I know you said you liked strong women. What else can we learn about you in a relationship?

CR:

Ask anybody.

MS:

You're a chill lover.

CR:

I wasn't perfect. But I'm the nicest guy in the world.

MS:

Yeah, I've never seen you get pissed off. Do you ever get pissed off?

CR:

Absolutely. Absolutely, you just ain't going to see it.

MS:

OK.

CR:

I'm old school like that. I'm a time-and-place kind of cat. When I'm fighting with my lady—and we beefing or whatever like that—we're not going to be beefing out in public. We're going to shut it down.

MS:

OK, that's some good advice. Because nobody likes to see a fighting couple in public. It's horrible.

CR:

How corny is that? It’s so fucking corny.

MS:

It’s worse than corny. But how do you bounce back from those types of moments?

CR:

You've gotta be honest with yourself.

MS:

Do you take a timeout? Because I think the best thing to do is separate, because I am a combative mofo. So I need to separate.

CR:

Yeah, and those are the type of women I fuck with. So they heat is going to come. So what I've learned is you can't really postpone it. I mean, look—I'm not saying there's not dark days. You might have some dark days, but then guess what? You just look in the mirror one day and you're like, "Yo man, I'm the same person. I'm the same person that got me here. I'm the same person that created this persona and this thing that everybody knows. All I've got to do is figure out what we're going to do right now."

MS:

As a parent, growing up, how hands on were you? Did you ever have talks about relationships and girls? What did you pass on from [your father] Calvin to them?

CR:

No. That wasn't my job.

MS:

That wasn't your thing. So you left that up to baby mamas.

CR:

Yeah, my kids' moms were the day-to-day.

MS:

But what did they come to you for? What kind of advice? Business?

CR:

No, a lot of times they'd be like, "Yo, this is what's going on. This is my point of view. This is my thing. And I need you to back me up on this." Ninety-nine times out of a hundred, I'm like "Yeah, OK, whatever." If I've got to be the bad guy, that's fine. But that's the parents having that understanding. We were so lucky, between both families. We had so many relatives. It took a village. I ain't going to sit up here and beat my chest talking about, "My kids came out right because of me." It was a collective.

MS:

Just like you and Play.

CR:

It was a collective. Yeah, exactly.

MS:

Complimentary. Yin and Yang.

CR:

There are so many reasons why things happen. Everything went the way it was supposed to be, you know?

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