Personnel: Brandy (vocals); Monica, Ray J, Wanya Morris (vocals); Da Brat, Heavy D, Kanye West, MC Lyte, Mase, Queen Latifah, Shaunta, Yo-Yo (rap vocals); Quincy Jones. This 2005 compilation, remastered and re-released in 2008, brings together 18 of … see full wiki
The Bottom Line: The Best of Brandyrepresents the sum total of Brandys musical scope, and is a good place to begin to get the know the caramel-skinned, almond eyed Nubian beauty.
Lets face it Brandy Norwood is not a great musical artist; good but not great. She plays no instrument that I am aware of and her voice while certainly not annoying, is not what true Divas and musical legends are made of. Brandy made it big because, well, she is extremely easy on the eyes with beautiful caramel brown skin and large wide set almond eyes that remind one of the Nubian queens of old. Lyrically and musically her songs are mostly forgettable (as is her voice), but Brandy is fun to listen to when your attention is on the dance floor, or otherwise diverted.
This explains why I have passed on all of Ms. Norwoods albums to date; while each offered a track or two of listenable music, I had a sneaking suspicion that the entire CD would not be worth my trouble, or money. The Best of Brandypretty much bears out my initial thoughts about the popular 90s artist. While I find something to like on the CD, most of the tracks do nothing for me. But then again, I am sure I was not the intended audience for the CD anyway.
Often labeled a musical superstar, Brandy Norwood is just as well known for her acting abilities on the WB show Moesha. With the release of The Best of Brandy, Ms. Norwood celebrates her first decade of chart-topping hits with this 18-track anthology taken from her four best-selling albums for Atlantic Records. Anyone familiar with Brandys body of work will be at home with the 16 Top-20 Pop and R&B charted singles that are part of this CD, including her duet with Monica, The Boy is Mine. The CD also includes a remix of the 1994 R&B hit I Wanna Be Down (featuring Queen Latifah, YoYo, and MC Lyte) and a heretofore unheard (and admittedly pretty good) cover of the Phil Collins classic Another Day in Paradise, which is presented as a duet with brother Ray J. This song was previously available only in Europe.
Brandy first made a splash on the charts in 1994 when her single I Wanna Be Down, produced by Keith Crouch went gold. That song released from her self-titled quadruple-platinum Atlantic Records debut, was followed by the million-selling single Baby (track No. 1 on this CD). In 1995 she scored another gold single with the single Brokenhearted (featuring her then significant other, Wanya Morris from Boyz II Men). In 1996 she hit the charts with another million-selling record, Sittin Up In My Room, produced by Kenny Babyface Edmonds. The song was subsequently featured on the soundtrack of the blockbuster movie starring Whitney Houston, Waiting to Exhale.
In 1998 Atlantic Records released Brandys sophomore album, Never Say Never. By that time Ms. Norwoods acting career was in full swing with her starring role on Moesha, along with important roles in both the Disney television adaptation of Cinderella in 1997, and the teenage slasher movie I Still Know What You Did Last Summer, in 1998. The net result of this exposure was to elevate Brandy into the upper echelon of young multi-talented entertainers. The key single from Never Say Never, the aforementioned The Boy Is Mine, became a double-platinum best-seller and helped thrust Never Say Never to sales of over six million worldwide.
Subsequent Brandy hits have included hits have included the Diane Warren penned, Have You Ever? (1999); Full Moon (2002), written and produced by Mike City; Who Is She 2 U? (2004), produced by Timbaland; and Talk About Our Love (2004), Ms. Norwoods top-5 pop and R&B duet with Kanye West.
For any Brandy fanand I must admit that I do like some of her songs, like Baby, Full Moon, Sittin Up in My RoomThe Best of Brandyhas a lot to offer; this is if you dont already own the three albums these tracks were taken from. But even if that is the case there is always the aforementioned Phil Collins remake Another Day in Paradise as well as the remake of Michael Jacksons Rock With You, to look forward to. The former is a faithfulif not refreshingrendering of the original, while the latter is well, best left to Mr. Jackson to perform; Brandy just doesnt have chops to pull it off.
Not blessed with a hefty vocal range, Brandy is nonetheless worth listening to. She is good filler music when like I mentioned above, your attention is diverted elsewhere. The Best of Brandy represents the sum total of Brandys musical scope to date, and is a good place to begin to get to know the caramel-skinned, almond eyed Nubian beauty.
Track Listing: 1. Baby 2. Best Friend 3. I wanna Be Down 4. Brokenhearted 5. Angel in Disguise 6. Boy Is Mine 7. Almost Doesnt Count 8. Top of The World 9. U Dont Know Me (Like U Used To) 10. Have You Ever? 11. Full Moon 12. What About Us? 13. Who is She to U 14 Talk About Our Love 15. Sittin Up in My Room 16. Rock With You 17. Another Day in Paradise 18. I Wanna Be Down (Remix)