Common’s Dating History: From Serena Williams to Tiffany Haddish
Common has dated Erykah Badu, Serena Williams and Taraji P. Henson. He was most recently in a relationship with Tiffany Haddish from 2020 to 2021
Common’s Dating History
Since releasing his debut album back in 1992, Common has had a whole lot of success.
Along with his solo work, the rapper was a member of the Soulquarians alongside D’Angelo, Mos Def and Q-Tip, and is also known for his acting. He has starred in movies including Selma, American Gangster and Happy Feet, and has a Golden Globe, an Oscar and three Grammys to his name.
Common has also been linked to some of the biggest names in showbiz over the years. The rapper previously dated fellow Soulquarians member Erykah Badu, tennis star Serena Williams and actresses Taraji P. Henson and Tiffany Haddish.
He credited his recent breakup with Haddish (the two dated from 2020 to 2021) due to their respective workloads. “It really didn’t allow for us to spend as much time and put as much energy into our relationship,” he said.
In February 2023, the Oscar winner sparked rumors with Breathe castmate Jennifer Hudson after the two were spotted leaving dinner together in Malibu. However, reps for Common and Hudson did not immediately respond to PEOPLE’s request for comments.
Here’s a look back at Common’s dating history.
Common was in a relationship with Kim Jones until 1998, and the couple had a daughter together, Omoye Assata Lynn. However, they split when their daughter was 1 year old.
In his 2019 memoir, Let Love Have the Last Word, Common shared that he recently learned Omoye had felt he didn’t try hard enough to be involved in her life. He admitted that those feelings might have been due to complications surrounding his breakup with Jones.
“It’s the typical things you hear about with two parents who are splitting up, especially young,” he told PEOPLE. “That love is obviously there. But it’s like sometimes I wasn’t able to have as much access and without that we couldn’t build the strongest relationship.”
Singer-songwriter Erykah Badu dated Common from 2000 to 2002, and the couple collaborated on a couple of songs while they were together, including “Jimi Was a Rock Star” on Common’s 2002 album Electric Circus and “Love of My Life (An Ode to Hip-Hop)” on Badu’s album 2003 album Worldwide Underground. They also worked on the soundtrack for the 2002 film Brown Sugar.
Decades after their split, Common opened up to PEOPLE about their relationship and described Badu as his “first love.” He continued, “When we split, I was 27 or 28. I was in a haze, just going through the motions. It was hard to eat,” adding, “It wasn’t her fault, the relationship just didn’t go forward.”
In 2019, the former couple met up at the BLACK GIRLS ROCK! Awards, and shared the stage for a performance.
Taraji P. Henson
In 2005, Common dated actress Taraji P. Henson, but the couple largely kept their relationship private.
Several years after they parted ways, Henson opened up about their relationship, calling it the “last real long-term relationship” she had. The actress also said that her son Marcell, who was about 11 years old when she dated Common, was “sad” when they broke up. After hearing Henson’s comments, Common called his ex a “good woman” on a SiriusXm radio show.
In 2013, Henson showed her support for her former partner by sharing a link to Common’s single “Testify” on Twitter.
Common and tennis legend Serena Williams dated between 2007 and 2010.
She appeared in the music video for his 2007 single “I Want You” alongside the likes of Alicia Keys, Kanye West and Kerry Washington, sparking rumors that the two were dating. In 2008, Williams was asked about their relationship, however, she dodged the question and instead said he was a “great guy” but that she had to “focus on tennis.” That same year, they were seen hand-in-hand in Miami, with an eyewitness saying that the pair were “affectionate” and kissing. However, they reportedly called it quits in 2010.
The following year, Williams was seen dancing during a performance by Common at the premiere of AMC’s Hell on Wheels, which he also co-starred in.
In 2015, Common discussed their relationship on The Meredith Vieira Show. “Not every ex-girlfriend and I are still friends, but with some, I am,” he said. “We got a great understanding, and I care about her as a person. It’s not like every other person you talk to every other day, but you know, you still have that respect. You have love for them and want to see them do well.”
The former couple have reunited professionally over the years: In 2016, Williams and Common discussed racism in tennis during the ESPN special The Undefeated in Depth: Serena with Common, while in 2018 they appeared together at an event hosted by Creative Minds Talks.
Common dated political analyst Angela Rye, the principal and CEO of political advocacy firm IMPACT Strategies, from 2017 to 2018. They made their red carpet debut at the Creative Arts Emmys in September 2017 after being linked romantically for a number of weeks.
The following month, Common described Rye as a “wonderful woman” to SiriusXM host Bevy Smith. “I’m happy right now — and she is an incredible human being,” he continued. In November, he said that Rye had made him more politically active: “I feel like I have a lot more work to do … I feel like I have to be more intelligent with the work and strategize more,” he explained.
However, PEOPLE reported in March 2018 that the couple had split, with Rye confirming the news to the New York Post. “We have and will always be friends,” she said. “He is an amazing human being, and I’m a much better person because he’s a part of my life. May we all keep loving and living.” She also said in an interview with Vanity Fair that “from meeting Common I’ve definitely become a better human being, and for that I’m grateful.”
In 2019, the couple were seen spending time with each other again. Speaking to The Shade Room in August of that year, Common confirmed that they were back together, but they split again later on in the year.
On Rye’s podcast, On One with Angela Rye, she said that they wanted different things. “We had been talking probably for two months about ‘let’s see where things go’ because I’m leaning towards ‘I want kids,’ and he was leaning towards ‘I don’t know,’ ” she explained. “And I think when somebody tells you they don’t know, they don’t really want that, they just don’t want to hurt you.”
Common and Tiffany Haddish first met when they co-starred in the movie The Kitchen in 2019. However, their relationship was platonic at first. “[Our friendship] wasn’t anything sexual or anything like that because my eyes were set on something else,” Haddish told Steve-O on an episode of his podcast Steve-O’s Wild Ride.
The following year, they matched on Bumble and went on a virtual date, before Haddish confirmed their relationship on Steve-O’s Wild Ride in August 2020. Haddish told Steve-O that their relationship was “hands down the best relationship I’ve ever been in — knock on wood!”
“I’ve lost 20 pounds since I’ve been in this relationship,” she continued. “I feel more confident in me and it’s not him that’s doing it. I’m just way happier and it’s like knowing I got somebody that cares about me, that really has my back. It seems like he does anyways. And I love it. I love him.”
That same month, Common called Haddish “a wonderful woman, a queen, and just a beautiful person” on Live with Kelly and Ryan.
In September 2021, Haddish said during an appearance on the SmartLess podcast that if Common ever proposed, she’d want him to do so with an apartment building. “We don’t live in the same house,” she said. “I would love for him to always be my friend. If he decides he wants to marry me, cool. I don’t want a ring, I want an apartment building.”
However, the couple split later that year, with a source telling PEOPLE in November that they were both “too busy” for a serious relationship and were “never in the same city together.” The following month, Haddish said that she wished Common “nothing but joy and happiness” and that she missed him “from time to time.” Meanwhile, Common said that their relationship was the “most mature” he’d had, citing their busy work schedules as the catalyst for the breakup.
“I don’t think the love really dispersed,” he said, “We weren’t feeding the relationship … but I think the energy that has been put into our careers and continuing to want to do the things that we do for ourselves and for people … it was hard for me to balance all of that and keep the relationship fed.”
Since breaking up, however, they’ve both remained in touch on social media. Common paid tribute to Haddish on her birthday in December 2021 with an Instagram post, and Haddish did the same on Instagram for Common’s 50th birthday in March 2022.
In July 2023, Haddish set the record straight regarding the couple’s breakup.
“It wasn’t mutual,” she told The Washington Post. “It was more him saying, ‘I think this relationship has run its course.’ And I was like, ‘Okay. Like you gonna be a 50-year-old single man. Okay?’ ”
Common and Jennifer Hudson first sparked dating rumors in 2022 when they were reportedly seen together in Philadelphia and Chicago. The pair star alongside each other in the upcoming action-thriller Breathe.
However, Hudson shut down romance speculation that September, telling Entertainment Tonight, “People create their narratives of it and it’s like, OK, you know, how you feel,” she said. “We shot a film together and he played my husband. We gotta eat in between those moments.”
Dating rumors resurfaced in February 2023 when the castmates were spotted leaving Nobu in Malibu together.
A month later, the EGOT winner celebrated Common’s 51st birthday with an Instagram post of the two posing together, writing, “Team Jhud pls help me wish one of the brightest lights, a Chicago and hip hop legend, the one and only @common a very happy birthday on today !”
In August 2023, TMZ spoke with Hudson about the romance rumors.
“Rumors say a lot of things,” she said. “But he’s a beautiful man, I will give you that. That’s for certain.”
When asked if the pair would ever consider collaborating on music, she answered, “I don’t know. It’d be dope to see two Chicagoans together, but I don’t know about that.”