Of the 25 songs on Drake’s album Scorpion, “In My Feelings” has been the most popular with fans. The song has inspired a dance challenge, and the chorus, which references a woman named “KeKe,” has also gone viral online. Given Drake’s penchant for autobiographical lyrics, fans have been trying to figure out who the real “KeKe” might be. It has been suspected that “KeKe” is actually Keshia Chanté, a Canadian singer and television personality.
Chanté is believed to be the “KeKe” in question due to her history with Drake, and the fact that the rapper has referenced her several times in the past. Read on to learn more about Chanté and how she feels about being the famous “KeKe.”
1. Chanté Has Released Three Albums & Has Co-Hosted ‘106 & Park’
Chanté was born Keshia Chanté Harper in Ottawa, Ontario. She was 6 years old when she first performed in front of an audience, and signed her first recording contract with SonyMusic Canada at age 14. Her debut album was released on June 22 2004, and earned her a Juno Award nomination for R&B/Soul Recording of the Year. The album was eventually certified gold.
Chanté followed up her debut with 2006’s 2U and 2010’s Night & Day, the former of which included a Drake collaboration called “Fallin'”.
Chanté was exposed to a wider audience in 2012, when she was made a co-host of the popular BET series 106 & Park. She hosted alongside Terrence J and fellow artist Bow Wow, and later attended the 2013 BET Awards as a news correspondent. To date, Chanté is the only Canadian to ever host 106 & Park. That same year, Chanté was invited by United States President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama to their White House holiday party in DC.
Chanté, who has a star on the Brampton Arts Walk of Fame, has since gone back to music. In 2017, she released an EP titled unbound 01, which was nominated for another Juno Award for Best R&B Recording. Her most recent release, unbound 02, was released on March 23, 2018.
2. She Was Drake’s First Girlfriend When They Were Teenagers
According to Genius, Chanté was Drake’s first girlfriend. The pair dated when they were teenagers in Toronto, and though they split before becoming famous, they have since remained friends. Drake congratulated Chanté when she became co-host of 106 & Park, and has frequently cited her as one of his lyrical muses.
In a 2013 interview with Hot 97, Chanté spoke about her special relationship with the rapper. “I’ve known Drake since I was 13,” she said. I was doing music, I had my first album out when I was around that age and he was in Degrassi and we kind of ran into each other. He was just a really good person.”
Chanté went on to say that being known as Drake’s ex-girlfriend has led to assumptions about their relationship that aren’t true. “It’s a weird thing for me just because, I mean yeah we went to the movies and stuff like that but we were never romantic at all,” she said. “We [only] kissed when we were like 14 or 15.”
“To know Aubrey is to love Aubrey, to hate him, and then love him again,” she continued. “That’s the type of relationship we have it’s very much like a love-hate relationship but we’re cool there’s like a respect there and there’s a friendship there.”
3. Drake Has Referenced Her Several Times In His Music
During a 106 & Park interview, Drake told Chanté: “You were one of my first crushes, and a lot of people might not know this, but I actually rapped about you before.” Prior to “In My Feelings,” the Canadian emcee referenced Chanté on the remix to her 2006 song “Fallin'”.
“Keshia, Keshia, do you remember the old us?,” he sings, “You just hold it down for your boy until the plaques arrive that’s why I love you.” Drake followed up the “Fallin’ (Remix)” with the song “Deceiving” off his 2007 mixtape Comeback Season.
He references Chanté and her mother Tessa Harper, rapping: “What up Tessa, I love you like my own mama, and your daughter’s getting grown, mama. And me, I’m just here working, waiting, patient for her to be ready to love and leave alone drama.”
Drake also dedicated the song “Madonna,” off his 2015 mixtape If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late, to Chanté.
4. She Is Not the Only Woman Suspected to Be ‘Keke’
Despite her history with Drake and her nickname, Chanté is not the only woman who has claimed to be the “KeKe” that the rapper is referencing. In the lyrics for “In My Feelings,” Drake raps “KeKe, do you love me? Are you riding? / Say you’ll never ever leave from beside me / ‘Cause I want ya, and I need ya / And I’m down for you always.”
The second part of the chorus is almost identical, expect the name “Kiki” is changed out for “KB,” leading many to speculate that Drake is talking about another woman here.
“KB” is believed to K’yanna Barber, who currently resides in Oakland and has also been romantically linked to Drake in the past. Uproxx points to the fact that Barber and Drake were spotted hanging out backstage at a 2016 concert, and that Barber has since tweeted out lyrics from “In My Feelings,” including “KB DO U LUV ME?” That said, she has yet to confirm that she is “KeKe” or “KB.”
This is not the first time fans have played the guessing game with Drake’s supposed exes. “Courtney from Hooter’s on Peachtree” became a minor celebrity after being referenced on Drake’s 2013 song “From Time,” as well as the titular women in “Bria’s Interlude” and “Cece’s Interlude,” respectively.
Learn more about Barber below.
5. She Has Been Bombarded With Comments from Drake’s Fans
With Chanté being the most likely candidate to be “KeKe,” fans have taken to flooding her DM with messages telling her to reach out to Drake. She has taken screenshots of the most notable DMs and posted them on her Instagram.
“I’m so sorry to say this but can u please tell Drake that u love him (not as a bf),” joked one user. “He really wants an answer. He’s [sic] also wants to know if you’ll stand beside him. Just talk to him. Thanks.”
Another user wrote “Kiki, do u love me? One more question, are u riding?” Many users have also referenced the #InMyFeelingsChallenge, which involves dancing to the specific portion of the song that references “KeKe.”
Several celebrities have participated in the #InMyFeelingsChallenge, including Kevin Hart, Shay Mitchell, Sterling K. Brown, and Will Smith. Check out a compilation of the most notable challenges below.
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