‘The Masked Singer’: Space Bunny on Why It Took Until Now to Say Yes to the Fox Hit
[Warning: The below contains MAJOR spoilers for The Masked Singer Season 7, Episode 9 “One Mask Hurrah — Round 3 Finals.”]
And then there were three … from Team Good.
The Round 3 finals ended with the Prince joining his fellow Good contestants, Firefly and the Ringmaster, in The Masked Singer Season 7 finale, while Queen Cobra and Space Bunny were eliminated and unmasked as vocal group En Vogue and singer Shaggy.
Here, Shaggy opens up about his time on the Fox hit.
What made you say yes to doing The Masked Singer?
Shaggy: I didn’t in the first place. I was offered it before, I think twice, and I was like, “Not into it. I love the show, enjoy it, but I’m not going to be running up and down in suits and all of that.” And I spoke to Ne-Yo, who had done the one in the U.K. and I was offered the U.K. one, too, but then I got offered the U.S. one and I’m like, “Yeah, I’m friends with [host] Nick [Cannon]. I’ll go ahead.” So we went ahead and got into it.
Talk about that costume. I loved the ears, the eyes moving, the tail! What appealed to you about it?
They gave us a couple options. They’re the experts at the show, so I was asking them a lot of questions like, what do you think works, what would the audience react to, what works good with the viewers on TV and all that. We all decided Space Bunny was cute. The eyes moved, I really liked that. The ears pop up. [It had] those wow factors, as you can see in the show. I liked that. What I didn’t know was the size of it. On paper, it looked like this cute little thing, but when I got to the studio and I saw the size of it, I was like, oh my God, this thing is huge, and then I didn’t know it weighed that much, too. It’s not super, super heavy, but heavy when you’re running around in it all day, with [low] ventilation, so you’re sweating inside. You got this harness that is pressing on your chest. It really makes it difficult to sing in. You have an earpiece mic. Breathing and all that becomes very, very difficult in doing these songs.
Did you make any adjustments to the songs or costume between performances?
No, I didn’t change the songs or anything like that. The only adjustment we did was to take the head off so I could breathe every now and then in between takes. It was pretty uncomfortable. It was an uncomfortable costume to be running around with, but it was super fun throwing them off. When they started going like, Owen Wilson or saying that could be LeBron [James], I’m like, “All right, this is working.” But Robin [Thicke] was on to me from pretty early.
Yeah, Robin and Nicole [Scherzinger] had you as their final guesses. Did you come into this expecting anyone from the panel to figure it out?
I didn’t expect [it to take] this long because I know all of these people up there. With the exception of Jenny McCarthy, I’ve had encounters with every single one. Nick is a good friend of mine. Nicole and I made records together and I produced with her. Ken [Jeong], I was just on his show recently. I thought it was going to be quicker than that, which is why I was like, “Come on, you gotta figure this out by now.”
At one point, Nick said that he thought he knew who you were. Do you know if he knew at that point?
I don’t know if he did at that point, but there were certainly enough hints, and Nick was at my house in Jamaica. We were hanging out. [Laughs] Should have been quicker.
What went into your song choices?
I wanted to do songs that kind of were hints towards my culture and songs that threw them off at the same time. “Jump in the Line” was a more Caribbean kind of a vibe. I think that that kind of let them know it was somebody Caribbean. That probably wasn’t the greatest song choice. It was a fun song to do. It certainly gives it away that I’m a Caribbean artist, and then I sound Caribbean, too. Eventually, I would have done Frank Sinatra or probably some Neil Diamond. We have an album coming out, me and Sting, which is a Frank Sinatra album and reggae, [Com Fly Wid Mi]. There’s a couple things I would have liked to have done down the line, but we didn’t make it to those.
The unmasking must’ve been a relief, to get that head off.
This thing was not light. It was hot. We had to keep these little hand fans blowing inside of it just to keep me from dripping all over the floor. [Laughs]
What are you going to take away from the entire experience?
It was a lot of fun. It’s a very entertaining show. With the exception of running around with this really hot, uncomfortable suit, I thought it was a blast.
The Masked Singer, Wednesdays, 8/7c, Fox