I was singing about being attracted to the opposite sex, but I had no experience behind it." Critical reaction to Brandy was generally positive, with All Music writer Eddie Huffman declaring Brandy "a lower-key Janet Jackson or a more stripped-down Mary J.
Blige [...] with good songs and crisp production." and produced three top ten hits on the Billboard Hot 100, including "I Wanna Be Down" and "Baby", both of which reached the top of the Hot R&B Singles chart and were certified platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America.
The two-hour Wonderful World of Disney special garnered an estimated 60 million viewers, giving the network its highest ratings in the time period in 16 years, and won an Emmy Award for Outstanding Art Direction for a Variety or Music Program the following year.
Fledgling producer Rodney "Darkchild" Jerkins was consulted to contribute to Norwood's second album Never Say Never, which was released in June 1998.
Norwood was born on February 11, 1979, in Mc Comb, Mississippi, the daughter of Willie Norwood, a former gospel singer and choir director, and his wife, Sonja Norwood (née Bates), a former district manager for H&R Block.
In 1990, her talent led to a contract with Teaspoon Productions, headed by Chris Stokes and Earl Harris, who gave her work as a backing vocalist for their R&B boy band Immature, and arranged the production of a demo tape.
While the sitcom managed to increase its audience every new season and spawned a spin-off titled The Parkers, the network decided to cancel the show after six seasons on the air, leaving it ending with a cliffhanger for a scrapped seventh season.
In 1997, Norwood was hand-picked by producer Whitney Houston to play the title character in Rodgers and Hammerstein’s television version of Cinderella featuring a multicultural cast that also included Jason Alexander, Whoopi Goldberg, and Houston.
In the 2010s, Norwood received a critical and commercial resurgence.
In 2010, she returned to television as a contestant on the eleventh season of Dancing with the Stars and starred in the reality series Brandy & Ray J: A Family Business.
In 1993, amid ongoing negotiations with East West Records, Norwood's parents organized a recording contract with the Atlantic Recording Corporation after auditioning for the company's director of A&R Darryl Williams.
Initially broadcast to high ratings, the series' viewership dwindled and ended up running for only one season, but earned her a Young Artists Award nomination for Outstanding Youth Ensemble alongside her co-stars.
She resumed her music career in 1998 with the widely successful duet with fellow R&B contemporary Monica, "The Boy Is Mine", which went on to become the best selling female duet of all time, and one of the longest running number one singles in history.