Posted On 17 Jun 2016
After performing in a number of girl bands and working as a songwriter in her teenage years, in 2001 Keke Wyatt came to national attention after a successful collaboration with R&B singer, Avant.
Wyatt has released three official studio albums, including “Soul Sista” in 2001, “Who Knew?” in 2010, and “Unbelievable” in 2011. All of the albums charted prominently, as did her 2014 EP release, “Ke’Ke.”
This April, Keke released her latest album called “Rated Love.” It was released through Aratek Entertainment and it spawned the two singles, “Sexy Song” and “Love Me.”
Learn more about Keke Wyatt in the following All Access interview:
Thanks for your time! How’s 2016 been treating you so far? What were some of the highlights of 2015 for you and your music?
2016 has been treating me great… Work is good, my family and kids are good, it’s all good… I’m beyond blessed, honey. My best highlight for 2015 was working hard to start my own label called Aratek Entertainment and it’s my name Ke’Tara spelled backwards. Putting my new album “Rated Love” out on my own label is the best highlight I could ever have.
Growing up, was music always something that you wanted to pursue? Can you recall your earliest musical memory? What could you see yourself doing if it weren’t for singing?
Well, I kind of had no choice because that is all I knew from the time I was born child. My parents were both singers and musicians.
I am a tom boy because I grew up with all brothers. I do have my girly girl side too. For example: I love playing in hair and makeup …. So, If I did not sing for a living I probably would of been up in somebody’s beauty school and ended up a beautician.
My earliest musical memory was at church of course. I was 5 yrs old I think? My grandmother was singing and she looked at me and said “Keke come here.” She just handed me the mic.. She looked at me in my little eyes and said “You can do it” and I have been doing it ever since.
What was the inspiration for your newest single, “Rated Love”?
My inspiration for “Rated Love” came mostly from my husband Michael Jamar whom I love but he gets on my last nerve….(Laughter)
How do you think you’ve grown as an artist since you first started performing?
I am not perfect I’m still trying to get there but I have matured personally, mentally, as an artist and a business women. I would say at least 95% from the time I first started in the industry… Now God is still working on that other 5%… (Laughter)
Can you talk about your newest sound? Where do you get the inspiration for it all?
Now that I have my own label I am motivated to do what I call Keke music, which is the music that is deep in my heart.. My music is Gospel, Country , R&B, Pop, Folk, Opera just to name a few….shoot all kinds… it’s all mixed up in one big ole pot that I stir together for the world to enjoy. The record labels made me record and sing this older music because my voice was so mature when I first started professionally as a teenager. The result of that kept me in a box my whole career. I am so excited to finally be able to open this box and let my old and new fans in to experience the real Keke Wyatt.
How have your shows been lately? Where can people see you perform next?
My shows have been going great.. My fans are amazing. Honey, I’m everywhere and I can’t keep up with all of that. My team tells me when and where to show up! (Laughter) I’ll tell you what, if you follow me on Instagram- keke_wyatt, Twitter- @kekewyattsings or on Facebook- Keke Wyatt Official Fan Page, you will know when I’m coming to your city.
Out of all your incredible experiences in the music industry, what do you think stands out as some of the most memorable times?
Let’s see… Well the first moment that stands out is when Miss Patti Labelle called me when I recorded the remake of “If Only You Knew” and said “Heffa u betta sang” I was so happy!
The 2nd is when I had the chance to do a tribute to Chaka Khan at the Trumpet Awards. I was so nervous, I mean come on now…these ladies are legends and singing their songs in front of them? Child, please! But I remember seeing Ms. Chaka stand up when I started singing to her “Tell me Something Good.” I thought “Whew Ok, I think she might approve of this.” (Laughter) I really do consider it a honor to get the blessings from these ladies that I have looked up to in this industry my whole career.
Who are some of your favorite artists? Who continues to inspire you and your music?
Hmmm… My favorite artist?? I would have to say her name is Keke Wyatt and she has this new album called “Rated Love” that is The Tea honey OooooKay!!!! (Laughter) Nah for real.. That’s a hard question because I just love good music. I have to listen to my country music every day from Jason Aldean, Shania Twain to Taylor Swift… I love my R&B/pop from Chris Brown to my girl’s Jazmine Sullivan and Jennifer Hudson… I’m on this good ole Rihanna playing right now honey…
So as u see I feel all kinds of music up in my spirit… If you make good music I’m going to buy and enjoy because I really do believe in supporting other artists. Now, I’m not about to buy no mess now. (Laughter) At the end of the day what God has for you will be for you!
The musicians that continue to inspire me are my Mother Lorna Wyatt and Father Keever Wyatt.
Any upcoming projects with other artists in the works?
We have been in talks with a couple of camps so I possibly could be stirring up some collaborations in the future.. You will just have to wait and see with who?! Right now it’s all about Keke as a solo artist.
At the end of the day, what do you hope is the message of your music? What do you hope listeners take away from your songs?
There are two most important things I want my fans and listeners to get from my music. It is the two things in my opinion the world is missing at the moment which is HOPE & LOVE. At the end of the day, my prayer is that God will continue to trust and use me as a vessel to go out and bless others in the world with my music!