‘I Didn’t Want to Give It to Them’: Music Producer Dallas Austin Says Break-up with TLC’s Chilli Is the Reason He Denied Them This Hit Record

Keeping up with celebrity relationships can be more dizzying than watching a spinning dreidel. Things only become more confusing as exes become the new flame of industry colleagues.

The latter is something with which GRAMMY Award-winning producer Dallas Austin has experience.

Dallas Austin says he and long-time friend Kim Porter dated when they were in high school. (Photo: @dallasaustins/Instagram)

“Yeah, this industry is small. It’s like a high school when you get in it,” said Austin of how common it is to share exes with colleagues.

The mega producer has shared a common ex with well-established acts such as Diddy and Usher.

“Starting with me and Kim Porter being in high school. I’ve known Kim since kindergarten,” revealed Austin before sharing the film “Drumline” is loosely based on their relationship. The duo was inseparable throughout their lives and relationships until Porter’s passing in 2019.

“Kim was my girlfriend, then she’s Puff’s girlfriend. Now all of us gotta deal with each other because we’re in the same business,” said Austin during an interview on “Established with Angela Yee.”

Dallas Austin, Chilli, their son, Tron, and Lenny Kravitz pose for a photo after the rock star’s performance in September 2018. (Photo: @dallasaustins/Instagram)

Austin also dated TLC’s Rozonda “Chilli” Thomas. The former couple didn’t last, but they successfully co-parent son Tron, but not without a few hiccups along the way.

When Chilli moved on with heartthrob Usher, Austin found it challenging to give TLC his hit song “Cool,” which ultimately went to singer Gwen Stefani.

“I didn’t want to give them that song because the song was about me and Rozonda saying ‘Hey now that you’re dating Usher, that’s good, me and him was cool, everybody done had their fights and everything else, but now I moved on, you moved on, now we’re cool,” he explained.

He continued, “We had just broke up…I wanted to kill everybody because, honestly, I was friends with Usher too. By the time I call and said ‘hey let’s be together in Miami’ she was like ‘nah, nah, nah that’s a wrap. I’m done.’ “

The record “Cool” went on to peak at #4 on the Billboard Top 40. And from his heartbreak, Austin penned songs for Pink and Blu Cantrell’s hit record “Hit Em Up Style” and wrote “Drumline.”