Keith Sweat

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Keith Sweat
Keith Sweat.jpg
Sweat performing in 2009
Background information
Birth nameKeith Douglas Sweat
Born (1961-07-22) July 22, 1961 (age 60)
Harlem, New York City, U.S.
Years active1975–present
Associated acts

Keith Douglas Sweat (born July 22, 1961) is an American singer, songwriter, record producer, and an early figure in the new jack swing musical movement. He is known for his collection of hits including "I Want Her", "Make It Last Forever", "I'll Give All My Love to You", "Make You Sweat", "Get Up on It", "Twisted" and "Nobody". He has released 13 solo albums and 2 as a part of the R&B supergroup LSG, and discovered the groups Silk and Kut Klose.


Early life

Keith Sweat was born in Harlem, New York City, to Juanita Thompson, a hairdresser, and Charles Sweat, a factory worker. Juanita raised their five children alone after Charles Sweat's death in 1973. [1]

He worked as a night stock boy at Macy's Department Store, and then a mail room clerk at Paine Webber, a brokerage firm. In just four years he worked his way up to a lucrative brokerage assistant job on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange. [2] Sweat also worked as a supervisor for the New York Mercantile Exchange. [1]


1975–1984: Career beginnings with Jamilah

Sweat started his musical career as a member of a Harlem band called Jamilah in 1975. [3] With the help of Jamilah, Sweat was able to hone his craft as a lead singer by performing regionally throughout the tri-State area of New York, New Jersey and Connecticut. The group was started by bassist Larry Peoples, guitarist Michael Samuels, and drummer Walter Bradley.

After leaving the group in 1984 to begin a solo career, he sang at nightclubs throughout New York City and landed a chance to record for the independent label, Stadium Records. Sweat recorded only two tunes for Stadium, "Lucky Seven", and "My Mind Is Made Up", which was their third and fourth ever release, but on Stadium's first release, he is credited as co-writer and co-producer of "You Are the One for Me", the last recording ever made by the group GQ. One of GQ's original members is his uncle, Keith "Sabu" Crier. [4]

1987–1991: Make It Last Forever,I'll Give All My Love to You, and Keep It Comin

Later in 1987, Keith Sweat was discovered by Vincent Davis and offered a recording contract with his label, Vintertainment Records, which was founded in 1983 on the foundations of early Hip-Hop and otherwise best known for releasing Joeski Love's "Pee Wee's Dance" in 1985. Vintertainment was distributed by Elektra Records from 1985 until it ceased operations in 1990. On November 24, 1987, Sweat released his debut solo studio album Make It Last Forever , which sold three million copies. The biggest hit from this album was the song that inaugurated the new jack swing era "I Want Her" (#1 R&B/#5 Pop), which was nominated for the 1989 Soul Train Best R&B/Urban Contemporary Song of the Year award, while the title track from the album hit No. 2 on the R&B charts. Sweat reached the charts again with his second album I'll Give All My Love to You (1990) which hit No. 6 on the Billboard 200 chart. He released his third album, Keep It Comin' in 1991, which debuted in the top 20 of the album chart.

1992–2001: Get Up on It, Keith Sweat, Still in the Game, and Didn't See Me Coming

In 1992, Sweat discovered the group Silk, and helped craft their debut album, Lose Control , which hit No. 7 on the Billboard 200 album chart. The album's single "Freak Me" hit No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 on May 1, 1993. In 1993, Sweat discovered the Atlanta-based female R&B group Kut Klose. Sweat also produced the group's debut album Surrender, which produced their biggest hit single "I Like", peaking to No. 8 on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles & Tracks chart.

Sweat released his fourth album Get Up on It in the summer of 1994, and his self-titled fifth album in 1996. Both albums reached the top ten on the Billboard 200. The single co/produced and written by Eric McCaine "Twisted" featuring R&B group Kut Klose hit No. 2 on the Billboard Hot 100 and "Nobody" hit No. 3, which made them Sweat's biggest hits to date. "Just A Touch" was a cover of the 1979 song "Just a Touch of Love" by Slave. In the fall of 1997, Sweat discovered the group Ol' Skool and helped with their self-titled debut. He was on their biggest single, "Am I Dreaming", which featured the R&B group Xscape. Sweat also formed the R&B supergroup LSG with Gerald Levert and Johnny Gill, and released their self-titled debut album Levert.Sweat.Gill in 1997. That album featured "My Body", which became a hit single. The album was certified double platinum and reached No. 4 on the U.S. Billboard 200.

Sweat's sixth album, Still in the Game was released in 1998, hitting No. 6 on the Billboard 200, and No. 2 on the R&B/Hip Hop albums chart. It featured the singles "Come and Get With Me" (which featured Snoop Dogg) (#12 Hot 100) and "I'm Not Ready" (#16 Hot 100). Sweat's success on the charts started to diminish in 2000, when he released the album Didn't See Me Coming . None of the singles from the album reached the top forty.

2002–present: Rebirth, Just Me, Ridin Solo, and Til the Morning

On August 13, 2002, Keith Sweat released his eighth album, Rebirth . The single "One on One" reached No. 75 on the Billboard Hot 100 and No. 44 on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles & Tracks chart.His 2008 album Just Me included the single, "Love U Better (featuring Keyshia Cole)". Sweat is currently signed to Kedar Records and released his tenth studio album entitled Ridin' Solo on June 22, 2010. The lead single taken from the album is "Test Drive" and featured label-mate Joe. Since 2007, Sweat has been the host of a nationally syndicated radio program based upon the Quiet storm format. The Keith Sweat Hotel (known as The Quiet Storm with Keith Sweat on WBLS in New York City) is syndicated through Premiere Radio Networks. [5]

"The Sweat Hotel" radio show

Sweat is the host of a nationally syndicated radio show "The Sweat Hotel". It is produced and distributed to urban adult contemporary and classic soul radio stations across the U.S. by Premiere Networks, a subsidiary of iHeartMedia, Inc. [6] Sweat plays popular R&B hits, interviews other R&B stars, and talks about his life as a singer and performer. Some radio stations carrying the show include 102.7 WVAZ Chicago, 105.3 WDAS-FM Philadelphia, 92.3 WMXD Detroit, 101.1 KJMS Memphis, 104.5 K283CH Houston, and 98.5 WYLD-FM New Orleans. The show airs five nights a week, although Sweat prerecords most segments of the show to allow him to tour and work on his recording career at the same time. Sweat began hosting the show in 2008.

Personal life

From 1992 until 2002, Sweat was married to The Real Housewives of Atlanta star Lisa Wu Hartwell. With her, he had two sons, born in 1995 and 1998. [7] [8] [9] [10] [11]

He also has three daughters, one with Tracy J. He also has a son named Joshua. [7]


Studio albums
Collaboration albums

Awards and nominations

Related Research Articles

<i>Get Up on It</i> 1994 studio album by Keith Sweat

Get Up On It is the fourth studio album by the American R&B recording artist Keith Sweat. Released on June 28, 1994, it went to #1 on the R&B Albums chart for two weeks and #8 on the Billboard 200 chart.

Silk is an American R&B group, formed in 1989 in Atlanta, Georgia. They are best known for their 1993 hit single, "Freak Me", which reached number-one on the US Billboard Hot 100.

Johnny Gill American singer, songwriter and actor

Johnny Gill Jr. is an American singer-songwriter and actor. Gill is the sixth and final member of the R&B/pop group New Edition, and was also a member of the supergroup called LSG, with Gerald Levert and Keith Sweat. Gill has released eight solo albums, three albums with New Edition, two albums with LSG, and one collaborative album with Stacy Lattisaw.

Gerald Levert American R&B singer

Gerald Edward Levert was an American singer-songwriter, producer and actor. Levert is best known for singing with his brother, Sean Levert, and friend Marc Gordon of the vocal group LeVert. Levert was also a member of LSG, a supergroup comprising Keith Sweat, Johnny Gill, and himself. Levert is the son of Eddie Levert, who is the lead singer of the R&B/soul vocal group the O'Jays. He had released nine solo albums, six with LeVert, two with his father Eddie Levert, two with LSG, as well as discovering the R&B groups the Rude Boys, Men at Large and 1 of the Girls.

112 is an American R&B group from Atlanta, Georgia. Formerly artists on Bad Boy Records, the group signed to the Def Soul roster in 2002. They had great success from the mid-late 1990s to earl-mid 2000s with hits such as "Only You", "Anywhere" and the Grammy Award-nominated single, "Peaches & Cream". The group most notably won a Grammy Award in 1997 for Best Rap Performance by a Duo or Group, for featuring on the single by label boss Puff Daddy, "I'll Be Missing You".

Edgerton "Ed" Hartwell II is a former American football linebacker. He played college football at Western Illinois and was drafted by the Baltimore Ravens in the fourth round of the 2001 NFL Draft. Hartwell was also a member of the Atlanta Falcons, Cincinnati Bengals, Oakland Raiders and Las Vegas Locomotives.

LSG is an R&B supergroup, composed of R&B artists Gerald Levert from Cleveland, Ohio, Keith Sweat from Harlem, New York and Johnny Gill from Washington, D.C. The group's name "LSG" is derived from the first letter in the last name of each artist.

<i>Ill Give All My Love to You</i> 1990 studio album by Keith Sweat

I'll Give All My Love to You is the second studio album by the American R&B recording artist Keith Sweat. It was released on June 12, 1990, and went to number one on the Top R&B albums chart and number 6 on the Billboard 200. It spawned Sweat's second and third number 1 R&B hits: "Make You Sweat" and the title track, while "Merry Go Round" and "Your Love Part 2" were Top 5 R&B hits.

Kut Klose is an American R&B trio that formed in Atlanta, Georgia. The three female singers that made up the group were Athena Cage, Lavonn Battle and Tabitha Duncan. The girls were discovered by Keith Sweat who produced their debut album. They are best known for their hit single "Get Up On It", "I Like" and the album Surrender. The name Kut Klose refers to the shortness of the three singers and the fact that their heights are only about 2-2.5 inches apart.

Twisted (Keith Sweat song) 1996 single by Keith Sweat

"Twisted" is a song by American singer Keith Sweat, released as a single in June 1996. It was the first song released from his self-titled fifth album. R&B group Kut Klose and remix rapper Pretty Russ are also featured on the song. The radio version of "Twisted" omits Pretty Russ' rap before the final chorus, though some urban stations kept the rap verse. A second mix of the song, referred to as the Flavahood Sexual remix, features a different backbeat sampled from Marvin Gaye's song "Sexual Healing". "Flavahood" also saw significant airplay on radio but was never released on an album.

My Body (LSG song) 1997 single by LSG

"My Body" is a song by R&B group LSG released as the first single from their debut album Levert.Sweat.Gill.

Nobody (Keith Sweat song) 1996 single by Keith Sweat

"Nobody" is a song by American singer-songwriter Keith Sweat featuring Athena Cage from the band Kut Klose. The song spent three weeks at No. 1 on the US Billboard Hot R&B Singles chart and reached No. 3 on the Billboard Hot 100. Internationally, it reached No. 9 in New Zealand, No. 10 in the Netherlands, No. 16 in Canada, and No. 22 in Australia. The music video for the single features a young Mekhi Phifer.

<i>Just Me</i> (Keith Sweat album) 2008 studio album by Keith Sweat

Just Me is the ninth studio album by American singer Keith Sweat. It was released by Atco Records on May 13, 2008 in the United States. The album marked Sweat's debut with the label following his departure from Elektra Records. Just Me became his first regular album to top the US Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums in a decade.

Lincoln Browder, better known by his stage name Link, is an American R&B singer from Dallas, Texas.

"In the Rain" is a 1972 soul single, written by Tony Hester. It was released in February 1972 by American the vocal group, The Dramatics, from their first album, Whatcha See Is Whatcha Get. The track is notable for its use of sounds of rain and thunder, first heard before the song's introduction, then throughout the instrumental and chorus sections.

Xscape (group) American R&B group

Xscape is an American female R&B group from Atlanta, Georgia, formed in 1992 by Kandi Burruss, Tameka "Tiny" Cottle, LaTocha Scott, Tamera Coggins-Wynn, and Tamika Scott. The following year Coggins-Wynn left the group and Xscape became a quartet. They were discovered by Jermaine Dupri who signed the group to his So So Def label. The group released their debut album Hummin' Comin' at 'Cha in 1993, which spawned two of their biggest hits "Just Kickin' It" and "Understanding". The album was certified Platinum on February 1, 1994. Xscape has sold more than 7 million records worldwide.

<i>Levert.Sweat.Gill</i> 1997 studio album by LSG

Levert.Sweat.Gill is the debut studio album by American supergroup LSG. It was released by East West Records on November 11, 1997 in the United States. The album includes contributions from guest producers, including Sean "Puffy" Combs and Jermaine Dupri. The Lox, Faith Evans, Coko, Missy Elliott, LL Cool J, Busta Rhymes, MC Lyte, and Jazze Pha make guest appearances on the album. LSG peaked at number 4 on the US Billboard 200 and number 2 on the US Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums. It was certified double platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA).

<i>Sweat Hotel Live</i> 2007 live album by Keith Sweat

Sweat Hotel Live is R&B artist Keith Sweat's second concert album, released on June 12, 2007.

<i>Surrender</i> (Kut Klose album) 1995 studio album by Kut Klose

Surrender is the only studio album by American contemporary R&B group Kut Klose. It was released in 1995, through Elektra Records, and was mostly produced by the group's mentor, Keith Sweat. The album was met with mild commercial success, making it to three Billboard charts, peaking at number 66 on the Billboard 200.

Lisa Wu is an American television personality, actress, realtor, screenwriter and designer. She is best known for appearing on reality series The Real Housewives of Atlanta and Hollywood Divas.


  1. 1 2 Dougherty, Steve, and Little, Benilde (September 26, 1988), "Keith Sweat Takes Stock of His Talent and Puts Wall Street Behind Him", People Weekly, 30 (13), p. 115CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  2. Dougherty, Steve (January 27, 1997), "For love and money", People Weekly, 47 (3), p. 69
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