Brandyand Ray J have teamed up for an11-episode reality series, Brandy and RayJ: A Family Business. The show follows the stars as they embark on anew venture, RnB Productions. Their parents, Sonja and Willie Norwood, who havealways been involved in their careers, take a step back to let their childrenhandle more of their business.
I spoke to the duo last week at the MTV/VH1 offices in Santa Monica for athree-part video interview.
In Part I, they explain the motivation for creating the showthat captures the family in both happy and combative moments. Brandy, who wasamong the first celebrities to have her own reality show, 2002's MTV Diary: Special Delivery, said sheinitially had reservations about doing the show.
"When you do a reality show that involves family members anddifferent dynamics and different relationships, your life immediately will become anopen book," Brandy told Yahoo! Music. "I told Ray, if we're going to do areality show we have to give it our all. We can't fake or censor ourselves. Wehave to be totally honest."
She also explained how the experience was different than Special Delivery which chronicled herpregnancy with her now 7-year-old daughter Sy'rai.
In Part II, Ray J explains his affection for his sister,whom he showers with lavish parties and gifts on the show. He wanted the series to capture real family issues that would relate to the viewers.
"That was my goal in creating the show," Ray J said. "[It]was to bring us together but then in watching us come together, other familiescome together."
Viewers will get to see Brandy's transition from creativeartist to developing her business persona. "I've never been too involved inbusiness," Brandy said. "[I'm] too emotional. [It's] too much for me...You cantell that that's a touch transition for me."
In Part III, Brandy and Ray J offer updates on a few oftheir other projects in the works. They hint that and RnB album, sitcom, andmovie are in their future.
And Ray J rates his sister'srap skills as displayed on Timbaland's ShockValue II album on the song "Meet In Tha Middle."
Brandy and Ray J's careers in television took offsimultaneously in 1993. Brandy had a role on the sitcom Thea while Ray J co-starred on TheSinbad Show. Brandy released her self-titled debut album the followingyear, and Ray J appeared in the video from her song "BestFriend." In 1999, Ray J joined the cast of Brandy's television Moeshaduring its fifth season. In 2001, Brandy and Ray J's cover of Phil Collins'"Another Day In Paradise" appeared on the Collins remake album, Urban Renewal.
Brandy and Ray J: A Family Business premieres Sunday, April11 on VH1.