From his days as one of the world's most famous rappers to his reemergence as a genre-spanning rocker, Vanilla Ice has remained a consummate showman. The iconic flattop haircut and American flag warm-up suit of his "Ice Ice Baby" period may be gone, but the fire and energy that made him famous still abound at his electrifying live shows where he takes the stage alongside an inflatable grim reaper and launches buckets of confetti into the audience. The addition of a live drummer ensures that Ice's beat-heavy sound is bigger than ever on his must-see tours, where he treats ticket buyers to his hip-hop classics as well as recent fan favorites like "Turn It Up".
Dallas-born Vanilla Ice, a.k.a. Robert Matthew Van Winkle, grew up influenced by hip-hop culture, taking up breakdancing in his teens and battle rapping at parties a few years later. In the late '80s he began performing regularly with his DJ and crew at a Dallas night club called City Lights, where he warmed up the stage for a variety of high-profile acts including N.W.A., Public Enemy, and MC Hammer. Ice made his recording debut in 1990 with "Ice Ice Baby", the lead single from his first album To the Extreme. The song was an international phenomenon, skyrocketing to No. 1 on charts around the world and establishing him as the first rapper to top the Billboard Hot 100. Several more hit singles followed including "Play That Funky Music" and "Cool as Ice (Everybody Get Loose)", but by the mid-'90s his star waned as he struggled with addiction and a grueling tour schedule. He returned to the spotlight in 1998 with the nu metal album Hard to Swallow, and has since dabbled in genres as far-ranging as country and techno on albums like 2001's Bi-Polar and 2011's W.T.F. (Wisdom, Tenacity, and Focus). Ice continues to entertain with his diverse sound and inimitable showmanship on his unforgettable tours.