The Best of Brandy

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The Best of Brandy
Greatest hits album by Brandy
Released March 28, 2005 (2005-03-28)
(see release history)
Recorded 1994–2004
Genre
Length 76:22 (Int. version)
Label Atlantic
Producer Brandy Norwood (exec.), Dallas Austin, Babyface, Mike City, Keith Crouch, Barry Eastmond, David Foster, Fred Jerkins III, Rodney Jerkins, Quincy Jones, Johnny de Mairo, Walter Millsap III, QDIII, Guy Roche, Soulshock & Karlin, Timbaland, Kanye West
Brandy chronology
Afrodisiac
(2004)
The Best of Brandy
(2005)
Human
(2008)

The Best of Brandy is the first compilation album by American recording artist Brandy Norwood. Completing her contract with Atlantic Records after eleven years with the company, it was released in March and April 2005 on most international music markets, marking her final release with the label.[1] The album comprises nearly all of her singles released between the years of 1994 and 2004, compiling her first four studio albums Brandy (1994), Never Say Never (1998), Full Moon (2002) and Afrodisiac (2004), as well as songs she contributed to film soundtracks such as Waiting to Exhale (1995) and Set It Off (1996). While it features no original material, the greatest hits disc contains rare tracks such as a 1995 cover of Michael Jackson's "Rock with You," her international single "Another Day in Paradise" and the single remix of "U Don't Know Me (Like U Used To)."[2]

The Best of Brandy was appreciated by contemporary critics who noted the creativity of Norwood's back-catalogue.[3] It debuted at number 27 on the Billboard 200 albums chart, selling about 26,000 units in its opening week,[4] and became a top thirty success in Australia and the United Kingdom.[5] In international territories, the second US single from Afrodisiac, "Who Is She 2 U" was released as a single in support of The Best of Brandy.

Background[edit]

On November 1, 2004, four months after the release of her fourth studio album with Atlantic Records, Brandy's publicist Courtney Barnes announced that the singer had requested and was granted an unconditional release from her recording contract with the music label, her record company since 1994, as Norwood was at "a place where [she wants] some change in her life [and] wanted to move on" musically.[1] Brandy was subsequently asked to complete her contract with the release of a greatest hits collection, a plan which she considered a true compliment and showcase for her development as a recording artist over ten years.[6] "I'm really proud of it," Brandy said about the compilation album the following year. "When you get a chance to step back, you notice all these great things you've done and all these great people that you've worked with. The album is a celebration of me being in the industry for so long, and I'm still going."[2] In addition, Norwood declared her satisfaction with the conclusion of her Atlantic era: "I just thought it was a great idea – to put 18 songs together of the best of everything that I’ve done made me feel really good. And also, it is giving me a reason to move on from everything I’ve done. I’m excited about putting it out and also putting it behind me."[7]

Reception[edit]

Critical response[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 4.5/5 stars[3]
Slant 3.5/5 stars[8]
Stylus (A)[9]

The Best of Brandy received generally favorable reviews from music critics.[3][8][9] Andy Kellman of Allmusic gave the compilation four and a half out of five stars and commented that "the disc is straightforward and rather thorough in its makeup, compiling almost all of Brandy's charting singles, [and] though the last two albums evidently didn't produce big singles, they're just as strong and fresh as the first two — so this set, unlike so many other anthologies from her contemporaries, hardly confirms dwindling creativity or popularity."[3] Thomas Inskeep from Stylus magazine commended that Norwood "helped soundtrack highs and lows, especially highs, with your so fresh/so clean stable of killer singles. Now that they’re collected like this, it’s like my own personal time capsule. Here’s to another decade, Brandy. As Aaliyah sang, you’re more than a woman, and the pop/R&B landscape is richer for your presence in it. Thanks."[9] He gave the album an "A" rating.[9]

In his review for Slant magazine, Sal Cinquemani criticized both Warner Music and Atlantic for "botching the promotion of her last studio album [Afrodisiac]" and Norwood's subsequent drop.[8] He was however positive with the album's track lisiting, stating: "The collection is capped off with non-album tracks like the #2 hit "Sittin' Up in My Room" and covers of Michael Jackson's "Rock with You" and Phil Collins's "Another Day in Paradise," which, though it's not exactly a labor of love for Brandy's longtime label home, makes The Best of a must-have for the hardest-core Moesha fans."[8] He rated the compilation three and a half out of five stars.[8] Less enthusiastic, Chris Taylor from MusicOMH felt that album proved that Norwood was "a fine wine that has never quite fully matured [...]The overall result is a middling collection which ultimately leaves one frequently fast-forwarding, wondering what could have been."[10]

Chart performance[edit]

In the United States, The Best of Brandy debuted at number 27 on the Billboard 200 and number 11 on the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart, selling about 26,000 units in its opening week.[4] It remained five weeks within the chart and was left uncertified by the RIAA.[4] Internationally, the compilation album entered the top thirty in Australia and the United Kingdom only, where it reached number 25 and 24 respectively, but enjoyed short runs on the national albums charts.[5] In addition, the album reached number 92 on the European Top 100 Albums chart.[11]

Track listing[edit]

North American edition
No. Title Writer(s) Producer(s) Length
1. "Baby"   Keith Crouch, Kipper Jones, Rahsaan Patterson Keith Crouch 4:19
2. "Best Friend"   Keith Crouch, Glenn McKinney Keith Crouch 4:48
3. "I Wanna Be Down"   Keith Crouch, Kipper Jones Keith Crouch 4:09
4. "Brokenhearted" (duet with Wanya Morris) Keith Crouch, Kipper Jones Soulshock & Karlin 4:45
5. "Angel in Disguise"   LaShawn Daniels, Traci Hale, Fred Jerkins III, Rodney Jerkins, Isaac Philips, Nycolia Turman Darkchild 4:48
6. "The Boy Is Mine" (duet with Monica) LaShawn Daniels, Fred Jerkins III, Rodney Jerkins, Brandy Norwood Dallas Austin, Darkchild, Brandy 4:00
7. "Almost Doesn't Count"   Shelly Peiken, Guy Roche Fred Jerkins III, Guy Roche 3:39
8. "Top of the World" (featuring Mase) Mason Betha, LaShawn Daniels, Traci Hale, Fred Jerkins III, Rodney Jerkins, Isaac Phillips, Nycolia Turman Darkchild, Brandy 4:41
9. "U Don't Know Me (Like U Used To)" (featuring Shaunta & Da Brat) Sean Bryant, Paris Davis, Rodney Jerkins, Brandy Norwood, Isaac Phillips, Darkchild, Brandy 4:00
10. "Have You Ever?"   Diane Warren David Foster 3:34
11. "Full Moon"   Mike City Mike City 3:53
12. "What About Us?"   LaShawn Daniels, Rodney Jerkins, Brandy Norwood, Nora Payne, Kenisha Pratt Darkchild 4:14
13. "Who Is She 2 U"   Candice Nelson, Timothy Mosley, Walter Millsap III Timbaland 4:43
14. "Talk About Our Love" (Kanye West) Kanye West, Harold Lilly Kanye West 3:34
15. "Sittin' Up in My Room"   Kenneth Edmonds Babyface 5:00
16. "Rock with You" (with Quincy Jones & Heavy D) Rod Temperton Quincy Jones, QD III 4:09
17. "Another Day in Paradise" (duet with Ray J) Phil Collins Guy Roche 4:32
18. "I Wanna Be Down (Remix)" (featuring Queen Latifah, Yo-Yo & MC Lyte) Keith Crouch, Kipper Jones Keith Crouch 4:16

Credits and personnel[edit]

Charts[edit]

Chart (2005) Provider Peak
position
Australian ARIA Albums Chart[5] ARIA 25
European Top 100 Albums[11] IFPI 92
UK Albums Chart[5] BPI/The Official Charts Company 24
US Billboard 200[5] Billboard 27
US Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums 11

Release history[edit]

Country Date
United Kingdom[12] March 28, 2005
Austria[13] April 4, 2005
Germany[13]
Switzerland[13]
Canada[14] April 5, 2005
United States[15]
France[16] April 12, 2005

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Rashbaum, Alyssa (2004-11-01). "Another Breakup For Brandy: This Time It's Her Label". MTV News. Retrieved 2010-06-20. 
  2. ^ a b Marino, Kelly (2005-04-04). "Brandy Takes Her Sweet Time, Personally And Professionally". MTV News. Retrieved 2010-06-20. 
  3. ^ a b c d Kellman, Andy. "The Best of Brandy review". Allmusic. Retrieved 2010-06-20. 
  4. ^ a b c Lewis, Randy (2005-04-14). "Evans' Title Proves No Idle Boast". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2010-06-20. 
  5. ^ a b c d e "Brandy – The Best of Brandy – Album Performance". aCharts.us. Retrieved 2010-03-02. 
  6. ^ Nathan, David; Rizik, Chris. "Brandy Discography". Soultracks.com. Retrieved 2010-06-20. 
  7. ^ "Interview: Brandy". ChicagoPride.com. 2005-04-15. Retrieved 2010-06-20. 
  8. ^ a b c d e Cinquemani, Sal (2005-04-16). "Brandy – The Best of Brandy". Slant. Retrieved 2010-03-02. 
  9. ^ a b c d Inskeep, Thomas (2005-04-13). "Brandy – The Best of Brandy – Review". Stylus. Retrieved 2010-03-02. 
  10. ^ Taylor, Chris (2005-03-28). "Brandy – The Best Of Brandy". MusicOMH. OMH.com. Retrieved 2013-06-02. 
  11. ^ a b "Music Charts – European Top 100 Albums – Music Genre Sales". Billboard. Retrieved 2010-06-20. [dead link]
  12. ^ "United Kingdom Release Date". Amazon.co.uk. 2005-03-28. Retrieved 2010-06-20. 
  13. ^ a b c "German Release Date". Amazon.de. 2005-04-05. Retrieved 2010-05-04. 
  14. ^ "Canadian release date". Amazon.ca. Retrieved 2009-09-01. 
  15. ^ "United States release date". Amazon.com. Retrieved 2009-09-01. 
  16. ^ "French Release Date". Amazon.fr. 2005-04-12. Retrieved 2010-06-20. 

External links[edit]