Smokey Robinson Admits To Having An Affair With Diana Ross, Says He’s Learned It’s Possible To Love More Than One Person At A Time

Smokey Robinson, Diana Ross

Smokey Robinson Admits To Having An Affair With Diana Ross, Says He’s Learned It’s Possible To Love More Than One Person At A Time

Smokey Robinson had a thing for Diana Ross back in the day.

In a recent interview, Smokey Robinson, 83, opened up about having an alleged affair with Diana Ross during his first marriage to Claudette Rogers. The Motown singer illustrated growing up in the hood remembering Diana Ross moving into his street when he was 10-years-old. Smokey Robinson – born William Robinson Jr. – said:

“It’s beautiful to know we were kids playing together.”

He added:

“We had such joy. I grew up in the hood, baby. And I mean the hood. 

During his teenage years, Robinson and his band The Miracles went to meet music executives who denied them a chance at stardom because Robinson sang the same high octave as their bands’ female singer, Claudette Rogers.

The Miracles
Top left: Bobby Rogers Top middle: Marv Tarplin
Top right: Ronald White
Bottom right: Claudette Robinson
Bottom left: Smokey Robinson

Robinson and Claudette Rogers went on to date and by the age of 19 they were married. 

Rogers gave birth to two out of three of Robinson’s children. In 1986 they divorced after 27 years and throughout their relationship Robinson admitted to cheating on his then-wife with Diana Ross, 79, for almost a year. He explained:

“I was married at the time. We were working together and it just happened. But it was beautiful.” 

Robinson complimented his former mistress and said they’re still close friends today:

“She’s a beautiful lady, and I love her right till today. She’s one of my closest people. She was young and trying to get her career together. I was trying to help her. I brought her to Motown, in fact. I wasn’t going after her and she wasn’t going after me. It just happened.”

According to Robinson, Diana Ross called off the affair due to guilt of knowing his wife:

 “After we’d been seeing each other for a while, Diana said to me she couldn’t do that because she knew Claudette, and she knew I still loved my wife. And I did. I loved my wife very much.”

His relationship with the singer taught him that love is impossible to give to only one person. He explained:

“You asked me what happened when we get older, and we get wisdom in life. I learned that we are capable of loving more than one person at the same time. And it has been made taboo by us. By people.” 

He added:

“It’s not because one person isn’t worthy or they don’t live up to what you expect – it has to do with feelings. If we could control love, nobody would love anybody. Nobody would take that chance. Why would you put your heart out there for somebody to be able to hurt you like that and make you able to have those feelings?”

Reportedly, Robinson remarried in 2002 to Frances Glandney. Ross and Robert Ellis Silberstein tied the knot from 1971 to 1977 and she moved on to marry Arne Naess Jr. from 1985 to 2000.

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Authored by: Tsai-Ann Hill