What Ever Happened to: Keith Washington

Unless this is your first time at Soul In Stereo, you know there’s only one R&B OG who can be referred to by just one name around here.

I’m not talking about Usher. Or Joe. Or even Lutha.

I’m talking Keith. Keith Sweat. Or, as I say when one of his songs randomly plays on the radio: KEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEF!

Yeah, Keith can turn the hardest of brothers into shrill middle-aged women (no offense to the shrill, middle-aged women reading this blog. You are appreciated).

But one Keith who never get love is Keith Washington. Everyone remembers “Kissing You,” but what has he done since then? Lemme remind you…

Detroit native Keith Washington joined the R&B scene in 1991 with his debut, Make Time For Love. It was the perfect era to showcase his rich vocals.  It was also the era of R&B brothers in suits wandering around in large open spaces. Check the videos for “Are You Still In Love With Me” and “Kissing You” – that brother was in serious need of a GPS. Of course, “Kissing You” became Keith’s calling card and it’s easy to see (or hear) why. His vocals were instantly compared to those of Luther Vandross – that’s not bad company to be in.

“Kissing You” rapidly reached No. 1 on the R&B charts, received a Grammy nomination and a won a Soul Train Music Award.

Follow-up singles “When You Love Somebody” and the title track, pushed the album to gold status. And by the looks of the video for “Make Time For Love,” Keith finally finished wandering and made it home for dinner. About time.

Shortly afterward, Keith scored another hit – this time in the UK with “If You Were With Me Now,” featuring Kylie Minogue. Now, my mind is slipping a bit in my old age, but I clearly remember hearing this song stateside. At some point it made its way back to the U.S., which is fine with me.

Wasting no time, Keith dropped his sophomore effort, You Make It Easy, in 1993. “Believe That” is a classic Keith ballad, but I’m not a fan of the video. Are we really supposed to buy Keith as a member of a motorcycle gang? At least if he gets lost again he’ll have company. Thankfully he put the blazer back on for “Stay In My Corner.” And he even dragged out the SILK PAJAMAS for “Trippin.” True playa for real. “Believe That” and “Stay In My Corner” did reasonably well on the R&B charts but nothing matched the success of Keith’s earlier work.

Keith took a hiatus and returned in 1998 with KW, suspiciously looking like Denzel Washington from Training Day.

And since it was 1998, Keith’s video for “Bring It On” had to be some sort of weird Scarface ripoff. I do NOT understand hip-hop’s fascination with that boring movie. Anyway, the video might be suspect but I can’t hate on the track itself – it’s probably my favorite song from Keith. KW also featured “I Love You,” a duet with Chante Moore that received plenty of airplay during my local radio station’s “Quiet Storm” hour. Half the kids running around today wearing skinny jeans and listening to Lil Wayne were conceived to that song. So we have Keith to blame.

Keith has pretty much vanished from the spotlight since the late ’90s. These days he hosts a nighttime radio show back in Detroit called “Kisses After Dark.” Wait wait wait: That’s awfully similar to another Keith’s side gig… And on his Twitter account, Keith claims to have a new single, “Think About You,” but I couldn’t find it online. No word on an album.

Should He Come Back: Keith Washington was a master of R&B ballads, and those are a tough sell these days. But unless his vocal chords have deteriorated into bread crumbs, Keith needs to come back RIGHT NOW. R&B is in dire need of veterans. There’s certain room for two Keiths.




  2. We need you to come back. All the singers of true love are gone none are left the rest retired there music was starting to sound all the same.

  3. Each song brings back a memory that puts a smile on my face. So yes,,,,not sure what Keith is doing now but singing should be put bact at the top of the list. Missing You Keith πŸ™‚

  4. I love this mans voice. He should start recording again.

  5. I was a single mom during the era of Keith Washington and the kind of love my heart desired was the back drop for this Ultimate trip I allowed myself to absorb deeply within while I would play his music. It wasn’t long after his music hit the airways did I meet my Husband and today ever now and then I play his music from my CD in the car on the way home from work and there we go again! This music takes me and my husband back & set things off all over, like two spirits as one and emerging together as thou we can see the secrets of each others love for one another. This music gave us the real meaning of love and feelings that we didn’t know how to explain to one another, Keith Washington put them all together like a Lovers Bible. He should be among the Greats of Great R&B Male Vocalist and one of the everlasting founders of real Vocalizing Perfection that can persuade anyone to try love one more time! Please! Come Back our Airways hasn’t sound the same since you’ve been away, Please! come back!
    DM from: North Carolina

  6. I love Keith Washington, his songs kissing you, bring it on and especially do you still love me I wish he would come back with some more songs I miss your voice and handsome look…

  7. pls come back keith washington

  8. I am such a fan of Keith Washington he is the men that i can even imagine i love all of the music i love all the video that he made but i love this men bring him back and come to erie Pennsylvania… #814 all day….

  9. i love keith w. although i was just a teen when this came out, i Knew for a fact that this was the way a man was supposed to love a woman! the songs of the new millennium lack that true connection and vulnerability that come when you love someone. Men today have a hard time expressing this. Great memories!!!

  10. Keith Washington is more than just a soulful R&B singer; he’s sexy and full of charisma…..I would love the chance to meet him.

  11. Thanks for catching us up on KW, what a beautiful and rich voice!. Spot-on comparison to Denzel in Training Day. Also, as a middle-aged woman, I can appreciate the shout-out! πŸ™‚

  12. MISSING YOU and your unforgettable music, Keith Washington

  13. I saw him at a concert in Newark years ago. I love his music and my mom. We often talk about why he disappeared from the music scene, please make more music, you are truly missed

  14. Hearing Keith Washington’s beautiful and soulful voice makes me wish I was young again!

  15. Danny Deliicfunk May 18, 2015 at 5:35 am

    Keith is doing great these days Folks. I had an opportunity to hang out with him at the Floyd Mayweather, TMT and TBE Victory Celebration, May 15th at ‘Club
    Lure’ in Hollywood, Ca. Washington mentioned that he is planning to do some additional studio recording this coming month of June 2015.So all you ladies and fans who have been waiting his return on the music charts, may be in for a great suprise. Also look out for my upcoming new CD release,
    The “5 Elements, AMan Made Thiz,
    by Danny Deliicfunk.

  16. Danny Deliicfunk May 18, 2015 at 5:44 am

    Out of respect for each other talents, Washington showed interested in me joining him in his future studio sessions. No response from me on that matter that night.

  17. We him very much I was just listening to ‘believe that’ man the song remind me of those innocent years when love was love, mike from JHB in South Africa

  18. Keith Washington

  19. Keith Washington’s music will forever be a part of my life. I love, love, love Kissing You. I love the re-recorded/remastered version even more. There’s just something about his voice. I have all his cds and know every song, and play them all often. You’d think his music was on top of today’s charts as much as I play his songs. They just don’t make music like that anymore. I was listening to “Lovers After All” the other day in my truck, blaring it, and was stopped to ask “who the hell that was ’cause it was sounding so good”. I love the Smokey remake that he sings of “Baby Come Close”. Damn! Can’t forget the duet with Chante – “I Love You”. “Baby, baby, baby, I love you” … too much! The Marvin Gaye remake of “You Sure Love to Ball” is off the chain! Marvin would be proud. I’ve always loved “Make Time for Love”, “Closer” and “Stay in My Corner”. Then there’s “Believe That”, “When You Love Somebody”, and “Ready, Willing and Able”. Can’t forget “You Make It Easy” …. “Time has a way of changing things from old to new, it seems as though just yesterday when I first laid eyes on you…” Those were the days! His songs made it so easy to love his music. I love his videos too. It would be very nice if he blessed us with some new music. For me, Keith is right up there with Lionel Richie, Charlie Wilson, Joe and Gerald Levert. They just don’t make ballads the way they used to. Love you Keith and can’t wait for a concert date and new music.

  20. Kieth I’m so happy your back.your music is so relaxing for oldskool ppl like me and I love it don’t stop.I play your songs ova n ova again. If I Eva get a husband I pray that he looks like yo Sxy selfy glory…..mwah

  21. Keith, when are you blessing us with some more good music????? Why do you treat us so bad??? Your voice … help me now …

  22. Omg!! Please come back Keith! No one can sing like you. Miss you!


  24. I agree with all that has been said, keep looking to see if he has started touring again, a man with a great voice .

  25. I think I’m a tough guy, but Keith’s voice and songs make me cry. No lie. My wife and I married in 1991 and still listen to Keith often. What a way to unwind and relax! We miss you, Keith!

  26. I love his music lots have his 3 cd’s please come to South Africa please Keith..
    I fell inlove with Trippin when I was 12 yrs old did’nt understand the song back than but now I do. Your voice is so soothing its the bestest remedy when your hurting and I know each and every song on the 3 cd’s I have.

  27. I am so happy with all the post on Keith Washington. Hopefully he will see this and realize how much we miss him.

  28. I have looked for Keith for years. Please come back!!!!!

  29. Keith washington ‘kissing you” was the best but there is another one called ” let me make love to you ft. letitia Body” thats a very good song….Xolani from SOWETO South Africa

  30. Met Keith, he has a short mans complex but IIIIIIIII like his music. Y juss last week I was listening to a mixed CD when kissing you played. I asked myself, whatever happened to Keith Washington?

  31. “The Brother-Keith” as we called him here in P.E. in South Africa with the fellaz.He is an inspiration not only musically but also in personality and sytle so I wanna know who inspired him and who discovered and gave him a first chance for him to be on the spotlight. I have reasons to believe that he draws his music and vocal and singing style and also his bearded looks and music sensation from the legendary Franky Beverly. Please somebody tell me.
    Qwambe here from P.E. N.B. S.A.

  32. My sisters & I saw Keith Washington on May 13, 2017 at The Baltimore Sound Stage. Took a pic with him but unable to attach it πŸ™ Well Keith was fantastic! Didn’t really like all of opening local acts. He didn’t perform long enough. I would love to see a full show of just him or with someone good like Chante Moore. Side Note: Going to see her in Sept at The Howard Theater. Anyway, Keith is still sexy, handsome, & a great performer. His voice is still strong & as beautiful as it was in the 90s when my sisters & I saw him in Washington, DC with Joe. I hope he returns with new music & a tour that still includes all of his old music. We will always love Keith Washington!!!

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