Lisa Lopes

Lisa Lopes and TLC

Lisa Lopes (right) with Rozonda Thomas and Tionne Watkins in 1995, photo by Prphotos

Birth Name: Lisa Nicole Lopes

Date of Birth: May 27, 1971

Place of Birth: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.

Date of Death: April 25, 2002

Place of Death: La Ceiba, Honduras

Ethnicity: African-American, one eighth African-Cape Verdean, one eighth Spanish [Asturian]

Lisa Lopes, known as Left Eye and N.I.N.A., was an American hip hop singer, rapper, songwriter, and producer. She was a member of R&B/hip hop girl-group TLC, until her death, with Rozonda Thomas (Chilli) and Tionne Watkins, and, originally, co-founder Crystal Jones. The group was managed by Perri “Pebbles” Reid.

Lisa was the daughter of Wanda Denise (Andino) Coleman and Ronald Eugene Lopes. Her surname, Lopes, is Portuguese, though she may not have had Portuguese ancestry. Lisa and her bandmate Tionne Watkins were cousins through marriage. Lisa’s mother was married to Tionne’s uncle. Lisa had two adopted children.

Lisa’s ancestry was African-American, one eighth Cape Verdean, and one eighth Spanish. Most of the population (about 71%) of Cape Verde is a mix of Sub-Saharan African and European, usually from Portugal and Spain.

Lisa’s paternal grandfather was Charles “Charlie” Lopes (the son of Emanuel/Manuel Lopes and Almira/Alma/Annie Smith). Charles was born in North Carolina. Emanuel likely was born on Cape Verde, and was the son of Charlie Lopes and Lenora. Almira was the daughter of Robert Smith and Hattie Taylor.

Lisa’s paternal grandmother was Gladys Bea/Beatrice Bailey (the daughter of Dennis Gordon and Regenia Bailey). Gladys was born in South Carolina, and was African-American.

Lisa’s maternal grandfather was Jose A. Andino (the son of Jose Andino Andion and The Rev. Helen B. Hewlett, born Helen Bernice Blackston). Lisa’s grandfather Jose was born in Pennsylvania. Lisa’s great-grandfather Jose was born in Asturias, Spain. The Rev. Helen was the daughter of Howard Blackston and Anna Mae Jones, who were African-American.

Lisa’s maternal grandmother was named Lillie.


Death record of Lisa’s father –

Lisa’s paternal grandfather, Charles “Charlie” Lopes, on the 1920 U.S. Census –

Death record of Lisa’s paternal great-grandfather, Emanuel/Manuel Lopes –

Lisa’s paternal great-grandmother, Almira/Alma/Annie Smith, on the 1900 U.S. Census –

Death record of Lisa’s paternal great-grandmother, Almira/Alma/Annie (Smith) Lopes Harris –


Curious about ethnicity

84 Responses

  1. Akwaba says:

    Her great grandfather was directly from Spain ?

    • ashash says:

      Yes, he was. Her parents were/are both 3/4 African-American and 1/4 Cape Verdean (father) and 1/4 Spanish (mother).

      • Akwaba says:

        That’s intriguing, is there more information about her Spanish great grandfather ?

        • ashash says:

          He was an immigrant from Asturias, Spain and married an African-American woman who was a reverend. That’s all I know, but there might be more in the sources they provided.

          • Akwaba says:

            That’s a unusual marriage, I don’t imagine a catholic Spanish man marrying an African American female reverend, especially at that time. Some people have very interesting histories in their family tree !

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.