UB Interview: Keith Sweat Talks 30th Anniversary, Las Vegas Residency & ‘Dress To Impress’

American Music Award® winner and multi-platinum-selling R&B legend

Keith Sweat released his twelfth studio album Dress To Impress via KDS Entertainment and Sony/RAL last summer.

With his smooth, sultry voice and pop/R&B smash hits, Keith Sweat is celebrating three decades in the music industry, he’s has sold more than 25 million records, released 12 studio albums, delivered five straight #1 albums in a row and is widely recognized as one of the Godfathers of R&B & leader of The New Jack Swing.

With Dress To Impress, Sweat’s 12th studio album, he continues his legacy and signature sound of feel-good, old-school R&B and soul music that everyone can enjoy, bringing back the romance and groove from yesterday, fusing it with the contemporary romantic feel of today. His hit single “Good Love,” reached the coveted spot of #1 on the Urban AC National Airplay Chart.

From his classic debut album, Make It Last Forever, to his Soul Train Lifetime Achievement Award and over 30 years of hits, singer/songwriter Keith Sweat’s name is synonymous with R&B. Not much has changed with this living legend.

A true music pioneer, Keith’s influence can still be heard in today’s hits from artists like Chris Brown and rappers like Fabolous.

In mid-January Keith Sweat began his Las Vegas Residency: Last Forever, in the Donny & Marie Showroom at Flamingo Las Vegas.

It was a nonstop music assault of the soul and senses. His band was at full blast, and his singers and dancers were as high-electric energy as he was. You couldn’t ask for better entertainment and a mesmerizing performance to start the New Year. There was as much fun for me listening to his music as it was watching the ladies fall under his extraordinary spell“.

The Las Vegas Review-Journal

Opening night alone was full of surprises when two special guests made an appearance on stage to perform with Keith. His close friend and The O’Jays singer, Eddie LeVert, joined his performance of “My Body.” Later during “I Want Her,” Keith shared the stage with Eric B. from Eric B. and Rakim. Other guests who joined him on his stay there were Teddy Riley (multiple nights), Dru Hill, Keith Washington and Flavor Flav.

The Las Vegas Residency was a huge success and received rave reviews, a couple even got engaged at one of the shows.

Keith Sweat performing at his limited engagement “Keith Sweat: Last Forever” (Flamingo Las Vegas)

Recently Keith Sweat spoke with Aries from UrbanBridgez.com about his Las Vegas Residency, new album “Dress To Impress,” Celebrating 30 years since “Make It Last Forever,” his good friend Gerald LeVert and more.

UrbanBridgez.com: First off, congratulations on your engagement at Flamingo, Las Vegas!
Keith Sweat: Thank you man I really appreciate that.

UrbanBridgez.com: What made you interested in the Las Vegas engagement?
Keith Sweat: Flamingo approached me and told me their idea for it. We came to a mutual agreement. So just the fact that they approached me and it’s something that I’ve never done before. So I figured I would take a stab at it, that’s what I’m doing at this point.

UrbanBridgez.com: “Dress to Impress” is another flawless Keith Sweat album, what goes into preparing for a new Keith Sweat album and how do you decide on the final tracklisting?
Keith Sweat: You know I do so many songs man, I just have to really listen to them over and over again. So it then becomes about which ones I won’t get tired of. If I get tired of something after listening to it for awhile. It’s not something that’s going to go on the album. If I don’t get tired of something, then I know that it is something that people will listen to over and over again. That’s how I choose what I put on the final album.

UrbanBridgez.com: “Come Into My Bedroom,” “Never Had A Lover” and “Wonderful Thang,” are just a few of my favorite songs of yours not released.
Keith Sweat: Thank you!

UrbanBridgez.com: What are 3 of your favorite songs you’ve recorded that were never released as singles?
Keith Sweat: Oh man, you said that I never released? Wow, that’s going into a lot of album cuts (both laugh). It’s kind of hard too because I don’t remember what was released.

UrbanBridgez.com: All them gems you got, that makes sense.
Keith Sweat: Yeah I’ve done 12 albums to date, not to mention other peoples stuff. So it’s kind of hard to remember the songs that could have been singles. On the first album I don’t think Right & A Wrong Way was a single.

UrbanBridgez.com: No and it should have been.
Keith Sweat: Right, I wanted a lot of those released from Make It Last Forever but I think they only put out Something Just Ain’t Right and I Want Her. The rest of them joints was album cuts. Like How Deep Is Your Love, was a album cut. But they still ended up being hits for me.

UrbanBridgez.com: “Make It Last Forever” turns 30 this year, when you went into record that album what were your goals as a new artist?
Keith Sweat: To make it do what it’s doing right now, Make it last forever (laughs). Those were my goals, I was just speaking it into existence. They always say speak what you want into existence. So when I said make it last forever, I kind of hit the head right on the nail. Pretty much because I’ve been doing it every since then.

UrbanBridgez.com: Were you surprised by the immediate success of “I Want Her?”
Keith Sweat: Most definitely, because honestly I wanted it to be another single as the lead. I thought it should have been Don’t Stop Your Love. Now that I look back, hey every song on that album was hits. I’m happy it had the success because it opened the door for every other song that was on that album.

UrbanBridgez.com: You and one of my absolute favorites, the late great Gerald LeVert who we lost 10 years ago, seemed to have the best relationship. Can you tell us one of the fondest memories you have with him?

“One of my fondest memories was my first time meeting him [Gerald LeVert] at the Apollo. He embraced me like a brother, like he had known me forever. We had that long lasting relationship every since that point from when we first met. He was one of my favorites, I remember when “Casanova” came out I was like I want to meet them. Then I came out like a year and a half later and I was able to meet one of my favorite artist of all time. So yeah we met at the Apollo and we just became close after that point.”

UrbanBridgez.com: You Guys had a great musical chemistry.
Keith Sweat: Thank you!

UrbanBridgez.com: Anything else you want to leave with your fans?
Keith Sweat: I just want to say, pick up that new Dress to Impress album. Come out and see me when I’m in your city. I look forward to seeing them and hopefully they look forward to seeing me.

[R&B Bridgez: 30 Years of Keith Sweat]

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