For fans of the TV show Moesha, it's time to celebrate since Brandy Norwood is returning as the lead of a new television series on BET. Zoe Ever After premieres on Tuesday, Jan. 5 at 10 p.m., so to help prepare yourself, I suggest listening to the best songs by Brandy. While her music career may have peaked in the 1990s, she has stayed active on TV as a host on America's Got Talent, a contestant on Dancing with the Stars, and a star on The Game. And just because she has been on TV doesn't mean Brandy hasn't been active in the music industry for over two decades.
When it comes to a Brandy playlist, if I could put on every song from her 1998 album Never Say Never, I would. Those were the glory days to be a Brandy fan — she was on the top of the charts, as well as starring in her sitcom Moesha, which ran from 1996 to 2001. Though you shouldn't expect Brandy to be singing in Zoe Ever After, the rom-com series is still a win for fans as she gets to highlight her comedic timing while her character struggles with single motherhood, a divorce, dating, and starting her own cosmetics line. So if watching Zoe Ever After makes you miss hearing Brandy's singing voice, here's a list of the 14 ultimate Brandy songs that every fan should know.
1. "I Wanna Be Down"
Make sure you're familiar with Brandy's debut single, "I Wanna Be Down," from her 1994 self-titled album since it's how her music career got started.
While "I Wanna Be Down" was the first single, "Baby" is the most memorable song off her first album and proved that Brandy has got the moves to go along with her smoky voice.
3. "Sittin' Up in My Room"
Recorded for the soundtrack of Waiting to Exhale, Brandy channeled her inner Beach Boy by hanging in her room — except she's busy thinking about the boy she has a crush on.
4. Moesha Theme Song
Of course, Brandy sang the theme song to her television show! And I guarantee the "Mo to the, E to the" is going to be stuck in your head now.
5. "Missing You"
Another song for a soundtrack, "Missing You," features Brandy alongside Tamia and legends Gladys Knight and Chaka Khan. It was recorded for the film Set It Off, which starred Jada Pinkett Smith, Queen Latifah, and Vivica A. Fox.
6. "In My Own Little Corner"
It was fairly impossible for me to choose just one song from Brandy's TV movie version of Rodgers and Hammerstein's Cinderella. But I had to go with "In My Own Little Corner," since it really highlights Brandy solo, which is saying something when Bernadette Peters and Whitney Houston were also in the film.
7. "The Boy Is Mine"
In her duet with Monica, Brandy created one of the most iconic songs of the late '90s. I'm sorry that you seem to be confused, but the winner of this song battle over an undeserving guy was always Brandy for me.
8. "Have You Ever?"
Get ready to cry, my friends. This ballad off of her album Never Say Never made it acceptable for middle school girls to cry in bed over an unrequited crush.
9. "What About Us?"
10. "Talk About Our Love"
Wait did I say "What About Us?" was edgy? I take that back since Brandy's fourth album Afrodisiac showed from the title that Brandy was all grown up. And a Kanye West cameo on the song "Talk About Our Love" doesn't hurt.
11. "Right Here (Departed)"
After the release of Afrodisiac in 2004, Brandy had a tough few years. She was involved in a car accident in 2006 that lead to the death of another car's driver, and though according to People there was an investigation, no criminal charges were filed against Brandy. It's hard not to think how that event may have affected her when listening to her 2008 song off of Human, "Right Here (Departed)."
12. "Put It Down"
While "Put It Down" may not be the best track off of Brandy's 2012 album Two Eleven, the Chris Brown collaboration is worth listening to.
In 2014, Brandy decided to honor Coldplay by covering their song "Magic." It wasn't the first time the R&B singer channeled Coldplay since her song "Should I Go?" from Afrodisiac sampled the band's early song "Clocks."
Brandy made her Broadway debut in 2015 in the musical Chicago and watching her kill it onstage is the perfect reminder (right before Zoe Ever After premieres) that not only can Brandy sing, but the woman can act.