As Black folk prepare to pull out the grills for the summer, an oldie but goodie YouTube sensation, Jones’ Good Ass BBQ & Foot Massage, is making another round on social media.

One afternoon this month, an old Vine video featuring a clip from an extremely low-budget commercial for a Jones’ Good Ass BBQ & Foot Massage appeared in our Twitter timeline. Like the person who shared the 7-second video, we couldn’t stop watching it and wondering if Jones’ Good Ass BBQ & Foot Massage is, in fact, a real business. If so, we joked, it had to be something out of Maywood or some other predominantly Black Chicago suburb. No shade, but anyone who is Black and living in the Chicagoland area knows the darndest things happen in our suburbs.

In true social-media fashion, the mastermind behind the Vine perfectly edited the clip of restaurateur Toby Jones and his trusty mascot crew – a purple dinosaur and yellow chicken – dancing to the instrumental of R&B singer Monica’s “So Gone.” It reminded us of the classic Chicago commercials for Moo & Oink, the very real meat wholesaler which lasted from the 1930s or 40s through its closure in 2011.

Once we found the full commercial for Jones’ Good Ass BBQ & Foot Massage, and learned that it’s a 9-year-old comedy skit by a South Side native that’s acquired more than 9-million views on Youtube, we had to catch up with Toby Jones, a.k.a comedian Robert L. Hines. Since the success of the Jones’ Good Ass sketch series, Hines has landed TV development deals and booked comedy shows around the world. Even Golden State Warriors basketball star Stephen Curry and rapper Chance The Rapper have gotten a kick out of Jones’ Good Ass BBQ & Foot Massage.

The TRiiBE: So there you were in 2008 with this amazing comedic career. You’d already performed alongside the great Bernie Mac at The Cotton Club in Chicago and appeared on BET’s Comic View twice in the 1990s. You’d done stand-up around the world. How did you come up with Jones’ Good Ass BBQ & Foot Massage?

Robert L. Hines: I was still living in Chicago at the time and I was doing little clubs here and there. I was doing this little coffee house in Naperville and this [sketch comedy group], Big Dog Eat Child, was there. After we met at that coffee house, one of the guys texted me: “Listen. We have a character that we think is really funny but we can’t seem to make him work. Could you do this character for us?” So they brought me to this warehouse. Weirdest thing I had ever seen. It was people living there. It was a lot of junk in the yard that nobody seems to give a shit about, and there were bands living in this place. This was on, like, 30th and right around Halsted. So we hammered out the first one which is called Jones’ Big Ass Truck Rental and Storage Facility. Then, they said, “We got a second one we want to do.” This was Jones’ Good Ass BBQ & Foot Massage.

TT: Jones’ Good Ass BBQ & Foot Massage feels like a real commercial.

RLH: Moo & Oink is what we based this on. They actually shot Jones’ Good Ass BBQ & Foot Massage at a Harold’s Chicken that used to be on 119th and Old Cicero. It’s not there anymore. We went over there and we got everything set up but we couldn’t get into the space. So they said, “Well. We got these [costumes]. Let’s just start filming right here.” That’s where the jingle started. We started dancing together, like the can-can, and I just started singing, ‘Jones BBQ & Foot Massage.’ Then the next time we went back, we shot everything.

TT: Even the dinosaur and chicken costumes were inspired by Moo & Oink?

RLH: Absolutely. It was inspired by those crappy commercials, which are amazingly entertaining. To me, [Moo & Oink] signifies what America is for Black people. We have to find a different angle to get paid because if you are at a disadvantage and you know you’ve gotta go twice as hard to get half as far, then whatever your opportunity is you’ve gotta make it shine no matter what. That’s what Jones’ Good Ass BBQ & Foot Massage brings to mind for me.

TT: What are some other commercials that come to mind that are very Chicago? We laugh all the time about Andriana Furs.

RLH: Oh my God! *Robert sings the Andriana Furs jingle.*

RLH: There was a wrestler by the name of Bobo Brazil. Bobo Brazil was a terrible actor. They would have him come on TV [during the One Stop Liquors commercials]. He would be, like, “Hi. I’m Bobo Brazil. This is where I get my beer and chitlins by the case.” And Buddy Bear. Do you remember those commercials? It was a grocery store on 74th and right around Halsted. “People who really care shop Buddy Bear.” Then there was this Jewel commercial. I used to tell a little joke about this. If you listened to the Jewel commercial on, like, news radio: “Working together to serve you better, that’s Jewel-Osco.” Then you hear the same commercial on WGCI. Exact same lyrics, but [it sounds like] they had a sister come straight from the choir room. She was singing not only about a Jewel but she was singing about Jesus.

TT: Why do you think Jones’ Good Ass BBQ & Foot Massage gets a new cycle of attention on social media every year?

RLH: Usually when the weather starts to break, and people pull out they raggedy little barbecue grills, they start thinking of Toby Jones all over again. In the most recent four or five years, Kevin Hart did a post on his LOL page. Then right after that, Stephen Curry latched onto it. There was a pilot for a Toby Jones TV show made. That’s as far as it went. People think it’s real. I think one of the keys is the fact that there’s a phone number to call. I used to answer that phone until it just became too much. I was getting thousands of calls a day and I just couldn’t keep up.

TT: I wanted to ask if y’all used a real number for the Jones’ Good Ass BBQ & Foot Massage commercial.

RLH: The number is what takes it to the next level.

TT: What did people say when they called?

RLH: I would answer the phone, ‘Jones Industries. Toby Jones here. How can I help ya?’ And then they would say, ‘Is this really Toby Jones?’ And I would say, ‘Yes. Is this really you?’

TT: Where in Chicago is Toby from?

RLH: The South Side. Toby is one of those dudes that will sell you anything at anytime. Toby will be on his way to one of his businesses and see somebody standing on 87th and the Dan Ryan selling bootleg Obama merch, and he’ll stop and pull something out of his truck, like, ‘Ooh. I got some shit to sell.’ He gotta make every dollar he can make.

TT: Now that the Jones’ Good Ass BBQ & Foot Massage commercial is making another wave on Twitter, how do you feel?

RLH: I am grateful that people still enjoy it and I will happily pull the character out whenever they need me.

This interview has been edited and condensed for clarity.