Keith Sweat Says He Doesn't Want The 'King Of R&B' Throne
Keith Sweat recently appeared on Mike Hill and Donny Harrell’s The Mike & Donny Show on Fox Soul alongside Pleasure P where he gave his thoughts on the current state of R&B.
During their conversation, the group also revisited R&B singer Jacquees’ bold proclamation that he was “King of R&B for this generation” in 2018. At the time, the Georgia native’s remarks rendered terse commentary from nearly every corner of Black entertainment, including T.I., Diddy, Bobby Brown, Tank, David Banner, Tyrese, and Chris Brown. The two have since cleared that air and Sweat reiterated that he didn’t hold anything against Jacquees. He simply saw the moment as an opportunity to educate the younger artist.
The show’s host wondered if Sweat had ever considered claiming the throne for himself. The “Make It Last Forever” singer felt that the notion was an affront to his contemporaries and those that came before him such as Luther Vandross, Donny Hathaway, Teddy Pendergrass, and Eddie Levert, that all contributed to the fabric of the genre. Sweat felt that no one singer can claim domain to the title.
“I don’t want that title. I think that anyone who has done great things made R&B what it is. We are all kings,” he acknowledged. “There’s too many people that have made great music for one person to say they are the king of R&B.”
“Ain’t nobody the damn king of R&B,” he continued. “I don’t want that. I just want people to say, ‘Young man, that boy is bad. He has made some great music. He made his mark in the R&B game or music game. I don’t want that title. That title is a big title to hold.”
Pleasure P also chimed in to add that he didn’t feel that any of the new generation of R&B singers can hold a candle to their predecessors. He stated that emerging singers need to be able to hold their own against singers such as himself before even stepping to compare themselves against the legends. Pleasure clarified that he has nothing against Jacquees or other singers feeling their oats but was adamant that “you don’t disrespect OGs.”
Continuing his train of thought, Sweat recalled the impression that his predecessors left on him as a younger singer coming up in the music industry, saying “I couldn't disrespect them like that. They were the reasons why I wanted to do what I wanted to do.”
“But, these young brothers nowadays, some of them are real wack,” he continued. “But, the way music is nowadays, they are willing to accept whatever. Back in the day, they weren't willing to accept whatever. You couldn’t lip sync. If you lip synced, they looked at you as Milli Vanilli.”
Check out their full “King of R&B” discourse below.