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Bill Bellamy regrets not trademarking his invention of the term ‘booty call’

The comedian opened up about the phrase in a podcast appearance and talked about the legacy and influence of HBO’s ‘Def Comedy Jam’

While appearing on a podcast, Bill Bellamy reveals he regrets not trademarking his invention of the term ‘booty call’ back in the 90s.

But who could have predicted that his use of the phrase during a set on HBO’s Def Comedy Jam would permeate the culture the way it did?

On a recent episode of People Magazine‘s PEOPLE in the 90s podcast, the comedian and actor opened up about coining the phrase that would go on to become a phenomenon, and what he would do differently had he known just how big it would become.

Bill Bellamy at the T.J. Martell Foundation 44th Annual New York Honors Gala on Oct.15, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Bryan Bedder/Getty Images for The T.J. Martell Foundation)

Bellamy told co-hosts Andrea Lavinthal and Jason Sheeler, “At the time I wasn’t thinking of it like that. I was just thinking of my joke. I didn’t realize the phrase would catch on to become like you said, a normal word that people know what it is now. Booty call was just a clever way to say you’re trying to get a girl to come by.”

“But who knew that everybody was going to lock in on it? I probably right now would be on a spaceship if I trademarked it,” he continued. “I mean, I’d be out there with Elon Musk somewhere.”

Bellamy also shed light on why he thinks the phrase caught on as it did, and the main differences between dating then and now.

“The reason why that blew up, I think, in my opinion, was one, the joke was really, really funny, but the phrase was so easy,” he explained. “When I was doing it in the clubs, people started smiling, because they were like, ‘That’s what it is!’” 

Now they got Tinder, they’re cheating. But back in the day you had to really make the call. Now you can swipe left, swipe right.” 

He added, “We had to get the number. Now you just see a picture and you swipe.”

Bill Bellamy performs at the “April Fools Comedy Jam” on April 12, 2019 in Brooklyn, New York. (Photo by Nicholas Hunt/Getty Images)

Bellamy became one of the biggest names in comedy in the 90s through Def Comedy Jam, which ran on HBO from 1992 to 1997. The show is known for launching other careers, some of which are considered the greatest and most revered comedians, from Dave Chappelle to Mike Epps.

Bellamy opened up about being a part of the show’s legacy on the podcast, explaining, “I knew it was going to be huge. The buzz about it, what it was doing for the culture of Black comedians at that time. HBO was really pushing the envelope. It was the place to be. HBO was like Netflix is today, right? So, for a comedian to be on HBO, you were going to be seen by millions.” 

Check out the story and listen to the full episode of PEOPLE in the 90s podcast, here.

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The post Bill Bellamy regrets not trademarking his invention of the term ‘booty call’ appeared first on TheGrio.

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