Keith & Darrell

Biography by

Keith Larnell Burston and Darrell Littlejohn are Smokey Robinson's nephews, but the bloodline didn't help the duo become successful recording artists. Robinson decided to produce his nephews as well as…
Read Full Biography

Artist Biography by

Keith Larnell Burston and Darrell Littlejohn are Smokey Robinson's nephews, but the bloodline didn't help the duo become successful recording artists. Robinson decided to produce his nephews as well as his backing singers, Quiet Storm, but Motown treated both projects as communicable diseases. The first Keith & Darrell single, "Feel the Fever" b/w "Things You're Made Of," was scheduled for release in late 1979, but only promo copies resulted, and the company backed away from the Burston/Littlejohn/Dwight Thomas tune.

In February 1980, a second K&D single, "Kickin' It Around" (written by Keith and Clifford Burston) b/w "I Met This Girl," suffered the same fate. The third time was the charm (or the release) for K&D, "You're My Gardner" (Smokey Robinson) b/w "Don't Be Afraid," a Keith, Clifford, Darrell, and Rana Ford song, rolled out in 1981 but gathered few sales.

The duo resurfaced March 1984 on a Billy Durham/Leanard Jackson song, "Work That Body," but history repeated itself as Motown never got behind this or any of K&D's records. The inclusion of their "Moving So Close" to the A Fine Mess soundtrack in 1986 was their last hurrah. Ian Levine revitalized Littlejohn's career in the late '80s by recording him as the lead of the revamped Monitors (original lead Richard Street was traveling the world with the Temptations) for his Motor City project.