While promoting their hit WE TV reality series “SWV: Reunited,” LeLee told show host Bethenny Frankel that when SWV (made up of fellow singers Cheryl “Coko” Clemons and Tamara “Taj” George) broke up in the late 1990’s, she contemplated suicide.
“I was very depressed. I mean I got to the point where I was just going to end my life. It was that bad. If I couldn’t have, what I had before, if I couldn’t have SWV and be who I was, as the world knew me as, I wanted to die,” she revealed. “I really believe, I mean, I can’t self diagnose myself but something was d*mn wrong with me!”
Best known for hits like “Weak,” “I’m So Into You,” “Anything” and “Rain,” the platinum-selling trio broke up after releasing their third CD, “Release Some Tension” and a holiday album, “A Special Christmas” both in 1997.
The three singers were at odds professionally and personally, and Lyons begin missing performance dates. RCA Records requested that Coko and Taj replace her in the group, but they fought against it. Instead, Coko inked a solo deal with the label and released “Hot Coko” in 1999.
“I was at the Marriott Marquee on 42nd Street and umm, I was up to my last $150,” LeLee recalled. “I was like, ‘Damn, I can’t afford to be in here another night. So, I called my sister, one of my sisters and she didn’t answer the phone. I called my other sister. It was no conversation. This is how the spirit works. I’m telling you because, all she said was, ‘Just come home.’ And we just was crying. I went in that hotel, looked in the mirror and I just cried. I’m like, ‘What were you thinking?’ Had she not answered that phone, I probably wouldn’t be here today.”
SWV reunited back in 2005 after music manager/TV producer Phil Thornton encouraged the group to perform at a “Summer Jam” concert for the now defunct 100.1 The Beat in Los Angeles.
A few management changes and several high profile performances ultimately led to them landing a new recording contract with Mass Appeal Entertainment/eOne and a deal for their reality series with WE TV.
VIDEO: Watch Leanne “LeLee” Lyons Appearance on the “Bethenny Show” below.