Tonight was the night! Brandy Rayana Norwood and Monica Denise Arnold faced off in the highly anticipated Verzuz Battle at Tyler Perry Studios located in Atlanta, Georgia. Each artist’s fans took their respective sides in the battle. However, I did not look at the Verzuz Battle as an actual battle because Brandy and Monica both have extensive catalogs that I love. I chose to look at it as a celebration of music and artistry. Overall the presentation was good but I observed a few things while enjoying the festivities.
1. Brandy and Monica still have work to do
There was an unspoken tension that was ever-present as soon as they walked on stage. Understandably so, these women had not spoken in 8 years. Monica was heavily guarded and Brandy was the friend who gets too comfortable too fast when trying to repair a broken relationship. So many times I wanted to say relax sis! Or chill with the little inappropriate jokes/shade. More conversations need to occur to get both women to a better place. I hope they can continue to work on it.
2. Brandy is still not comfortable being her authentic self in public
It’s clear to me that Brandy is still not completely comfortable with being herself in public. The whole “Sideline Ho” overreaction makes that very clear. Monica has always been comfortable being her authentic self since Miss Thang dropped. Brandy seems to be still be stuck on keeping up a public persona versus being her true self. She is a product of the music industry of the ’90s where she was forced to portray a squeaky clean image. At this point in the game, she needs to let that shit go, and be free!
3. Monica has an extensive catalog
A lot of people on the interwebs tried to count Monica out, but Monica has a whole list of hits. Brandy was more commercially successful than Monica, but please give Mo her things! Because she deserves! With that being said Monica doesn’t always choose the best lead singles for her projects, which has been an issue on the last few projects, but each project had amazing songs. Her roll-outs always seem botched. I am not sure if that’s because she’s independent or what. While “Trenches” has the potential to be a good song, it’s dead on arrival as a lead single, for me.
4. Brandy could have left the Moesha poems at home
While I get what she was trying to do, she honestly could have left the Moesha poems down to “The Den” with Andell(R.I.P) we just came to hear the music and maybe the backstory for the songs.
5. Brandy has got to stop with the lies about “The Boy Is Mine”
Brandy Rayana Norwood, knows GOOD and GOTDAMN well she did not want Monica on the “The Boy Is Mine” she has stated that on the record. The adult thing to say would have been, ” Hey Mo, I initially DID NOT want you on this song for my selfish reasons, but I am glad that you got on the song because it’s a classic and we made history with it” Simple as that! Instead, she gave a revisionist history of the story and also continues to remind us and Monica that the song was her’s. PETTY! Honestly speaking the song would not be what it is today if either artist was missing! PERIOD! It was at this point Monica was headed to time clock to punch out and head the MARTA station!
Thank you, Brandy and Monica, for a great evening of music. Both of their catalogs were the soundtrack of my adolescence. I hope and pray they continue having healing conversations. I also hope that we get the tour Brandy kept alluding to.
Whut, say you?