That’s My Cousin! Famous Black Celebrities Who Are Related

March 20, 2012  |  
11 of 11

by Marissa Ellis

Culturally, black folks are known for referring to anyone they have a fondness for as their cousin. It’s a term of endearment per se. But it creates problems when it comes to an outsider determining actual blood connections. The outsider here being us, your very own nosy Madame Noire.

Case in point: many people assume that Ludacris and Monica are cousins. In actuality, they are merely connected via marriage. Luda’s uncle is married to Monica’s mom, essentially making Ludacris the nephew of Monica’s stepfather – not cousins. In any case, to the best of our abilities, we have highlighted some Black celebs who are first, second and third cousins.



Martin Lawrence and Christopher Martin 

They were in House Party together back in 1990 when Christopher Martin of Kid n Play was hot stuff and Martin Lawrence had not yet hit it big. Was cousin Chris responsible for getting Lawrence one of his breaks in movies? All we know is that these days, the roles are certainly reversed.

Photo credit: Zimbio

Al Roker and Lenny Kravitz

This came from the horse’s mouth. Al Roker revealed on the Today show that he and Lenny Kravitz were actually third cousins (their grandfathers were cousins).

Christopher Williams and Al B. Sure

These two held down the pretty boy era of 80s R&B, and are still in the entertainment industry, albeit on a much more low-key level. Al B. Sure is hosting a radio show and Christopher Williams is acting in stage plays.

Cherrelle and Pebbles

Cherrelle had a lot of great singles in the 1980s, including  Didn’t Mean to Turn You On,” but it’s her younger cousin Pebbles who is much more of a popular name amongst the younger generations. The two worked together when Cherrelle sang on Pebbles’ hit song “Always.”

K-Ci, Jo-Jo and Fantasia

K-Ci & JoJo of Jodeci and Fantasia are first cousins who hail from North Carolina. It’s kinda ironic that Fantasia rose to fame via American Idol when she had access to superstar relatives and their connections.

Stacey Dash and Damon Dash

It’s all in the Dash name for these first cousins who grew up in the Bronx together.


Bill Bellamy and Shaq

Now this is a surprising one. Although Bellamy has confirmed that he’s in fact Shaquille’s cousin, he never mentioned how distant or close they are in terms of cousinship. We’re guessing they’re second or third cousins.

Frederick M. Brown, Getty Images

Dionne Warwick and Whitney Houston

This couple marks the most famous of cousins in the industry. Sadly, Warwick has been coping with the death of her cousin in recent weeks. They are first cousins whose mothers were sisters and who sang in the gospel singing group the Drinkard Singers.


photo credit:

Pete Rock and Heavy D

Uber producer and DJ Pete Rock was the late Heavy D’s younger cousin. Shortly after his death, Pete Rock explained just how instrumental his cousin was to his career. Heavy D’s brother Floyd is the one who taught him how to scratch, putting him on the path to becoming the youngest DJ in New York when he was hired at WBLS at the age of 15. The New York natives remained close as they both rose up the ranks, and Pete Rock worked on a couple of D’s albums.

Marques Houston and J-Boog from B2k

Marques Houston definitely hooked up his cousin J-Boog (real name Jarell Damonte Houstonwith a plum job as part of the successful teen group B2K, who hit it big in the early 2000s. The elder cousin is busy with random projects as always and 26-year-old J-Boog is busy being a dad to his three children. 

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  • Jay

    Chris and Martin, Chris and Al, and a couple others on this list look very related, they almost look like brothers or sisters. Sometimes you see someone’s cousin (by blood, not marriage) and you think, “They’re related???”

  • MalikaiDragonSlayer

    Umm, maybe it’s just me but I’d personally consider Ludacris and Monica cousins with that connection.

  • Queenjewel79

    Monica and Ludacris ARE cousins since his uncle is married to her mother . When people marry they become one so her family is now his and vice versa. You should have chosen a better example.

  • OLIVIA_J537


    • Denise_bell


      • guest

        Every word in this post is spelled incorrectly.

  • wow a lot of surprising family connections 
    divaclubchic on etsy check me out:)

  • Dinky Proctor

    Here’s another one, child Actress Yara Shahidi and rapper Nas are cousins.

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  • Bella

    Is it true the manager of B2K sexually abused the members?

    • Queen Edgy


  • SnowLady

    I think maybe you all need to do a genealogy search on Snoop and Ray J kind ship because Snoop known for calling people his family. As far as Fantasia and KCI- and Jojo, why didn’t they get her noticed, the girl can blow.

  • Mscstapleton

    when did being related by marriage mean you’re not really related?!?!?

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  • Kaykay6812

    Isn’t Stacy and Damon Dash brother and sister?

    • Denise_bell


  • i read everyone commets how the hell can all say who is or who ant do all live with them and if any off these people are not related they will come forth and say so so shut up 

    • April64baby

      I hear you! Bill Bellamy is actually my cousin as well, although I am clearly not a “celebrity”. We are related on our mothers and maternal grandmothers side of the family. I believe that he and Shaq are related from his father’s side although I never knew this until recently. He and I actually grew up together in Newark, NJ. Roy Jones Jr. is also my cousin. When people find out that I am TRULY related to both and can prove it w/ pics of us as kids, family reunions etc. then they believe it. Why is it that people find it so hard to believe that “celebrities” have families too?  He was and still is “Billy to me”. Long before he became “Bill Bellamy” he was my cousin playing Star Trek w/ me and my brother under our grandmother’s dining room table. LOL.

  • Blackroom17

    This is site running out of ideas…cuz i remember reading this a few months ago….

  • Bs2012

    They left out Monica and Ludacris. I thought they would be on the list. I do believe their first cousins.

    • Denise_bell


    • dee

      I think is Ludacris and LaLa Anthony are cousins

    • dee

      I think is Ludacris and LaLa Anthony are cousins

  • customcalendars4u2

    Most of these claims are not accurate at all….

  • Sanderschykim

    fantasia & casey, jo jo…that is not an attractive family
    we serve a fair and merciful god..who blessed them with talent.( singing)

    • sexcgenius

      So your fair and merciful God made a mistake is what you are saying?  If you are going to testify to the goodness of God, leave your personal conviction on the side.  The only thing this does is give non-believers a reason to never believe.  Try to be more like the light on a hill instead of a hater.

    • Nomahlubi Sanders

      God don’t like what you just said … how can you use His name in vain by judging other people negatively first, then buttering them up with a blessing? 

  • Chanda

    Well of course Lenny Kravitz and Al Roker are related. Kravitz’s mother was Roxy Roker from the Jeffersons.

  • Victoria

    Ray J, Brandy & Snoop Dog? While that explains a LOT ’cause Ray J is definitely a D-O-G! 

  • Victoria

    Maybe K-Ci and Jo-Jo weren’t that impressed with Fantasia’s singing. I know I’m not! 


    wait, wouldnt your stepfathers nephew actually be your cousin? Just like your “real” fathers nephew would be your cousin?

  • tee tee

    Kci Jojo and Fantasia I c why they r related. Great voices run in their family.I love em all.

  • Cathyneal4

    That’s rude. Christopher Martin left his career when he was on top because he had a very severe form of cancer.

    • Mr Footmanjr

      He had cancer dumb a**

  • Tagirl

    Wow, I never knew Brandy and Snoop were cousins. Didn’t know that most peeps on this list were related except Stacy and Dame; Dionne & Whitney; Marcus & J-Boog, and Heavy & Pete Rock.

  • beautiful_mami

    I have to say the snoop, brandy, ray j one surprised me.. I would have never guessed they had a family connection

    • Bigshorty

      Their parents (Snoop’s and Brandy’s) all originate from McComb, Mississippi and moved to California. Daz of the Dogg Pound is Snoop’s first cousin as well. Nate Dogg (RIP) and Suge Knight’s parents also are natives of Mississippi.

    • No MORE

      Why Brandy and Ray J are from Carson and Snoop is from Long Beach (you can stand on one intersection and depending which way you go you either in Carson, Long Beach or Compton). There families migrated from the south (Mississippi) like most Black families.

  • Denise_bell


    • DoinMe

      Right! People made that up because they were competing pretty boys at the time. 

      Marques Houston is kin to a few of those B2K guys. In fact, I thought all of them were relatives in some kid of way–cousins, brothers, etc…

      • Allie1234

        i thought so too. omarion is his brother and i think raz b and fizz was cousin

        • Bs2012

          No, Marques & Omarion are “play” brothers. They said it in an interview. The only one’s who were related are Marques & J-Boog and Raz-B is Chris Stokes’ (the manager) cousin. Lil Fizz is singers Jhene Aiko & Mila J’s cousin. Mila J and Marques dated for a lil while. She was also in the group Gyrl back in the 90’s.

          • Leilani

            I read in an interview that Fizz and Jhene and Mila were not blood cousins, that Chris had them play that off because they looked alike and it was good marketing. But let’s be real, the interview I read could have lied! LOL Hard to trust an article if I don’t actually hear it from the person! But Jhene does have a baby by O’ryan (Omarion’s little brother). 

          • Andrea

            Jhene and Lil Fizz aren’t real cousins either look it up

        • Getit2gether

          No they r not marques has a sister and an older brother omarion has 1 younger brother and a bunch of little sisters trust, omarion went 2 hamilton highschool in l.a and so did i

  • IllyPhilly

     Deja Vu