Brandy’s Best Kept Secrets: Singer Divulges Beauty, Business, Style & Food Tips
Though Brandy has been in the public eye since the early '90s, with the recent release of her sixth LP, Two Eleven, the singer is prepared to offer fans a deeper glimpse into herself as an artist.
"I really feel like this album reawakened the artist in me," she tells The BoomBox. "It's been a while since I've had this much confidence and belief in what I've been doing. For a long time I didn't know what was gonna happen and what I was gonna do in music or if I even had a place still in it."
Aided by songwriters like Sean Garrett, the songstress has returned after a four-year hiatus without breaking a sweat, reclaiming her spot without missing a beat.
"We definitely wanted to do something to get into the hearts and minds of people," she shares. "We wanted to do something timeless. That was definitely the goal, but when you experience the goal, it feels different. Like we never had a goal, and it just kinda happened.
"But, we really believed, and everybody that I worked with this time, everybody was really in sync. Everybody wanted the same thing."
She may be an open book these days, but we couldn't help but wonder if there's anything that she's managed to keep under wraps after all these years, so The BoomBox sat down with Brandy to ask dig up her best kept secrets, which you can read in full below.
See Photos of Brandy's In House Visit With The BoomBox
I do the same thing that I've always done. I'll wash my face with Crème De La Mer face wash, I've been using that for years now, and it keeps my skin pretty fresh. Of course I go through my breakouts like everybody else, but I stick to that product. I'm a diehard fan.
You've gotta know everything! I don't want nothing to get past me. I wanna know everything even the things I don't need to know [laughs]!
Remember that you were once a child. You relate better that way. My daughter's 10 and she really likes me a lot, which is a really good thing [laughs]. She's a person! She's me on steroids. Her opinions are just so good, her logic is too good. I mean, this girl will fight you on anything, making sense while doing it. It frustrates me sometimes because her arguments are so good, but I love that because if she can stand on her own with me, then she can stand on her own with anybody, and I encourage that. I encourage her to voice her opinion and say what's on her mind because I never want her to hold things in. I teach her to always say how she feels and to always do it with love and even though sometimes she gets a little feisty, I know at the end of the day she has a great heart and that I can't teach her.
I don't have a top style secret. I mean, I'm clueless when it comes to fashion. I know when it's right and I know when it's wrong, but in my personal life I'm not really into fashion like that, and I need to be because the business I'm in that's what it's all about [laughter]. I guess my secret is my stylist. If you see me looking good, that's my stylist. Like, you'll know when I dress myself and when a stylist has dressed me. You can completely tell the difference. But I keep my hair done.
Secret Song She Wishes Was Part of Her Catalog
I hate to do this because I don't think that God blesses you with anybody else's stuff. I think that God really knows how to issue out people's stuff and never gives it to another person if it belongs to somebody else, but in saying that, there is a song that I wish was mine and that's Jordin Sparks "No Air." I just ... That song... I felt was my song [laughs]. I did! And she did such a good job with it with Chris Brown, but every time I hear it I just always say to myself 'If I could just do some of the background [vocals], Jordin. You do the lead, honey.' Because I knew that song, what I would've experienced if I did that song. I just love it.
Secret Favorite Artist
One of my favorite artists is Enya. She's unbelievable. Her harmonies, her voice is just impeccable. Everybody else I listen to is pretty much the obvious, but Enya would be the most eclectic and different person that people wouldn't think that I listened to, and loved. She's one of my favorite singers.
Secret Restaurant Favorite
My favorite restaurant is Houston's, and everybody knows it. I want everybody to go to Houston's.
I think everyone knows my friends, but I've just recently reconnected with Countess Vaughn and Shar Jackson from "Moesha." I just reconnected with Alexis Fields, and these were like my childhood friends -- people I grew up with. I love them, I can't believe I haven't spoken with them in years, you know? My "Moesha" girls. It feels like there were things that we didn't understand about each other then. Things that we weren't mature enough to talk about, but as women we were able to get together and really apologize for some of the things we put each other through, and really be mature about it. We're all mothers now ... Well, Shar was a mother then, so she was already up on game, but now Countess, Alexis and I are mothers and we're able to just share our kids and just be women, which is great.
Acting is not really about acting, it's really about finding the truth within your life and relating it to that character, and bringing that character to life. I would definitely suggest Tasha Smith as a coach and Ivana Chubbuck's book, The Power of the Actor. Aspiring actors should read these books and try and find Tasha Smith as soon as possible because she's an amazing coach, and she helps you find your truth and bring your truth to the character. The greatest actors make it look so easy but it's not as easy as it looks. There's a lot that goes into bringing a character to life. I can't wait until I get the chance to do something so complex where I really have to do a lot of inner work to bring a character to life. I can't wait for that moment, and I hope I get it.
Watch Brandy's "It All Belongs to Me" Video Feat. Monica