For those hoping for a return of classic R&B, Keke Wyatt suggests that you not hold your breath.
“I love real R&B, but we ain’t living in the ‘90s R&B no more. We ain’t living in the ‘80s R&B,” Keke told Sister 2 Sister. “Things change. Times change.”
More R&B artists are “crossing over” and experimenting with other genres of music, but Keke said that’s not necessarily about reaching a wider audience. For her, it’s just about loving a wide range of music and expressing that in what she records.
“It’s just a reflection of who I am and what I like to sing about and how I like to sing,” said Keke.
Growing up in a biracial household, she explained that her mother’s side of the family enjoyed country, while her dad’s half listened to gospel and R&B, which wasn’t necessarily her genre of choice when entering the music business.
“From the very beginning of my career, I was pushed into a certain genre of music. I’ve always loved all types of music,” she said. “There’s really no music that I don’t like or that I don’t listen to.”
While some of her latest tracks are reminiscent of old-school R&B, like her song “You and I” with Avant, Keke said that’s only attracting a limited audience these days.
“The only people that’s going to be listening to that now is adult contemporary, and I’m just in my 30s,” she said. “I still like to listen to the Chris Browns and the Keri Hilsons and the Beyoncés.
“Ain’t nobody tryin’ to go back to the ‘90s,” she said. “The kids aren’t going to listen to it. I’m trying to reach everybody Alicia [Keys] is reaching, everybody Beyoncé’s reaching. I’m doing it Keke style.
Listen to Avant and Keke’s “You and I” below.
Keke talks about her new book in the March 2013 issue of Sister 2 Sister.