‘You Listen Here, Little Heifer’: Even After Patti LaBelle’s Verbal Outburst, Keke Wyatt Says She’ll Never Stop Singing ‘If Only You Knew’

Keke Wyatt is a robust singer, songwriter, reality star and wife, whose musical talent is synonymous with R&B royalty. As a mom of 11, her pregnancy announcements have made headlines just as much as news about her tearing up the stages with her vocal skills.  

The soulful singer is known for her original music such as her platinum-selling debut album, “Soul Sista,” as well as her duets with R&B singer Avant, like “Nothing In This World,” “You and I,” and her viral covers.  

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Keke Wyatt shares story of how Patti LaBelle called her a "heifer" for singing covers of her songs.
Keke Wyatt shares story of how Patti LaBelle called her a “heifer” for singing covers of her songs. (Photos: Atlanta Black Star.)

Her range is incredible, her pitch is insane and her ability to hit high notes whether standing or sitting down in heels is unmatched; therefore it’s safe to say Wyatt is in a league of her own. But not everyone is happy about her singing their songs.  

In an exclusive interview with Atlanta Black Star, she dishes on whether she’s done having children and exactly what Patti LaBelle said about singing her music.

‘I would if … Probably,” said Wyatt on welcoming more children. “I don’t know. It’s God because I didn’t ask for 11. He gave me 11.” 

The 41-year-old said she loves nothing more than taking care of her children, but sometimes mama has to hit the road.  

During showcases, Wyatt regularly performs her rendition of LaBelle’s “If Only You Knew.” She revealed that the Godmother of Soul once gave her a verbal lashing for singing her hit song during performances.  

“She called me a heifer,” said Wyatt. “She called me. She said, ’You listen here, little heifer.’ I said, ‘Who is this?’ She said, ‘Patti.’ ” 

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The “R&B Divas” alum said Ms. Labelle called to tell her that the way she had been singing her 1983 song made it hard for her to perform it.  

“She said … ‘I can never sing my song again because of you,’ ” Wyatt recalled. She said she told the legendary artist that she most definitely needed to continue singing that song, before Labelle, she said, added, “ ‘Well you’re going to make it hard for me.’ ” 

Wyatt got a rather mild reaction from LaBelle, who once considered putting hands on a chef following a 2008 dispute during the live taping of “The Tyra Banks Show.”

“The girl thought I was gonna eat the paper on the cupcake. The way I wanted to slap that heifer so hard,” said LaBelle during a 2023 appearance on “The Jennifer Hudson Show.”

Although it may not have been the pleasant introduction Wyatt was hoping for, she said she was thrilled just to get a “personal” call from the music icon herself.  

But will she ever stop singing LaBelle’s “If Only You Knew” hit? Wyatt says she likely won’t and neither will she stop performing “My First Love.”  

“I think it resonates with me more now because I’m with my first love again,” she said, referring to her husband, Zackariah Darring.  

“When I was 13 he was my little boyfriend. Honey, he could do nothing wrong. Now he’s my husband, and he does everything wrong,” Wyatt added. “But I love it. He does everything right. I’m just playing.” 

Viewers can get a glimpse of Wyatt, Darring and their entire family on the new reality series, “KeKe Wyatt’s World” on WE tv and ALLBLK. It follows the singer as she balances marriage, motherhood, her demanding singing career and recording her first album in six years.

The show airs Thursday nights at 9 p.m. EST.

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