Smokey Robinson, 83, Reveals He Had An Affair With Diana Ross, 79: She’s ‘Beautiful’

'I wasn’t going after her and she wasn’t going after me. It just happened,' the legendary musician recalled in a new interview.

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Smokey Robinson and Diana Ross
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Smokey Robinson, 83, is opening up about his sex life as he promotes his first album since 2014, GASMS. In one bold revelation, he claimed he once had an affair with his childhood friend, Diana Ross. “We were working together and it just happened. But it was beautiful. She’s a beautiful lady, and I love her right till today,” he confessed to The Guardian in an interview published on April 27. He added that the affair lasted one year and that he was indeed married at the time to his first wife, Claudette Rogers Robinson.

“She’s one of my closest people,” the “Cruisin'” hitmaker continued about Diana, 79. “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.”

Smokey Robinson and Diana Ross
Smokey Robinson and Diana Ross have been close since childhood (Photo: Shutterstock)

He recalled that Diana ended their affair because she knew it wasn’t right. “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,” the music icon remembered. “And I did. I loved my wife very much.”

The tale of his affair inspired Smokey to open up about what he learned about love: It’s layered. “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. 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,” he eloquently explained. “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?”

Smokey Robinson
Smokey Robinson’s new sex-inspired album comes out on April 28, 2023 (Photo: Shutterstock)

Smokey and Claudette were married from 1959 until 1986. He married his second wife, Frances Glandney, nearly 15 years later. They are still together to this day. It’s not likely that Diana was married when she was secretly seeing the former Miracles member, as she did not get hitched until she was well into her career. She tied the knot with Robert Ellis Silberstein in 1971 and they lasted for six years. She was also married to Arne Naess Jr. from 1985 to 2000.

Smokey wasn’t the only one dropping bombshells during the interview. During his chat with The Guardian, he learned about the rumor that he fathered Michael Jackson with Diana, which had him entertained. “Oh my God! I never heard that one, man! That’s pretty good. That’s funny! That’s funny!” he exclaimed.

As noted above, Smokey is promoting his new album, GASMS. Yes, it’s about sex. But according to the “Being With You” singer, it’s about so much more. “All the songs on the album have a connotation to them. Most people, when you say ‘gasms,’ they think about orgasms. But ‘gasms’ is any good feeling that you get,” he told Rolling Stone in an interview published in March. “It’s probably a controversial title, but I wanted it to be that way.”

The nine-track album drops on April 28.