On Thursday, Keith Sweat and Bobby Brown will face off in an epic Verzuz battle as part of our virtual ESSENCE Festival of Culture and the excitement around seeing these New Jack Swing kings go round for round is steadily rising.
Since the late ’80s both singers have made a name for themselves with classic slow jams and pop and R&B tracks as solo artists and members of mega groups. And when it comes to Keith Sweat, fans are asking, “Who can give the hits like he can?” And for many that answer is “Nobody.”
In anticipation of Thursday night’s battle—be sure to tune in at 8pm EST—we’ve put together a list of 20 jams we want to hear from Keith Sweat, from his debut single to his time with LSG. Check out the list below.
For the classics we can’t wait for Bobby Brown to drop, click here. Tune in to the battle Thursday night on ESSENCE.com.
- I Want Her
Keith’s debut single shot straight to number one on the R&B charts 1987 and topped the R&B Billboard chart for 1988, so it’s safe to say that he came out swinging.
- Make It Last Forever
“Make It Last Forever” is the second single and title track from Keith’s debut album and was even sampled and covered by many artists after its release, so it absolutely is a must on the list.
- I’ll Give All My Love to You
This popular 1990 single, which later featured a live version with Monica, spent a week at number one on the U.S. Billboard R&B chart after its debut.
- Make You Sweat
The single (which honestly speaks for itself) peaked at number one on the Billboard Hot R&B singles chart in 1990.
- Keep It Comin’
“Keep It’ Comin’” landed Keith yet again in the number one spot on the Billboard Hot R&B singles chart in 1991.
- Tellin’ Me No Again
This Keith Sweat song served as the ultimate let’s-be-more-than-friends ballad for anyone tryna take it to the next level and remains popular.
You truly have us twisted if you didn’t think we would list this 1996 single featuring Kut Klose, which went number one on the charts and in our hearts (and the video is still an added bonus).
“Nobody” featuring Athena Cage was not only an instant hit on the U.S. charts in 1996, but also made a mark internationally too, which isn’t hard to believe considering we can sing every single word of this tune.
- Chocolate Girl
A musical shout-out to darker skinned black women, “Chocolate Girl” still serves as one of the cutest ballads thus far.
- How Do You Like It?
Not only did the single land Keith on the charts once again, but it featured the late Lisa “Left Eye” Lopes, which instantly makes it a must-hear.
- Get Up On It
This sensual single featured his very own group, Kut Klose, and made for one steamy title song, which spawned from his fourth album of the same name.
- Freak Me (Silk)
Sweat co-wrote and co-produced Silk’s number one massive hit in 1993, so it absolutely deserves a spot in this battle.
- My Body
In 1996, Keith linked up with R&B heavy hitters Johnny Gill and the late Gerald Levert to release the smash hit as a supergroup in 1997.
- Merry Go Round
“Merry Go Round” is just one of those undeniable please-don’t-play-with-my-heart songs and served as another silky ballad in 1990.
- Why Me Baby?
Let’s face it: any single with LL Cool J on it is one that you just can’t skip.
- Come With Me
A Keith Sweat song featuring the one and only Ronald Isley? Please count us in.
- Right and Wrong Way
There’s a right way to love somebody and no wrong way to love this 1987 tune.
- Don’t Stop Your Love
This R&B ballad is ALL about the sweet alone time between a couple, so this definitely made onto our list.
- I’m Not Ready
Although the title may say otherwise, “I’m Not Ready” is another smooth, lovers-only jam that has us ready for this showdown.
- Come and Get With Me
Keith linking up with Snoop Dogg for a duet? Need we say more to put a bow on the battle of a lifetime?