The Smiths are one big happy family. Brandy, her husband Robert and their five-month-old baby girl Sy'rai have been inseparable, spending the past couple of weeks in the studio together.
"We're four songs into it right now," Robert "Big Bert" Smith said of the follow-up to Full Moon last week. "We've been cutting some blazers. We have a couple of uptempo [tracks] and a couple of ballads. We'll probably be finished in another month and a half. As far as working in the studio, [Brandy]'s so focused. 'Let's get these joints done. Let's make them as hot as they can possibly be.' "
So far Brandy has only been working with her husband, but Timbaland will be checking in behind the boards soon.
"I'm pretty much overseeing the album, doing A&R," Smith said of his role. "[There are] going to be a few people [producing] on there. Right now we're gonna start off with me and Tim and see where we go from there. There's also gonna be a crazy [guest] appearance. We're trying to be creative. It's just coming up with who and what kind of song it's gonna be.
"We're going street this time," Smith explained of the LP's direction. "Radio is a little more urban now. The good thing about Brandy is that she has such a pretty voice. She's still gonna have that balance where she has those big, pretty songs, but it's gonna be a little more street. It's gonna be a great album."
Smith, who also produced tracks on the current albums from Kelly Rowland, Dave Hollister and Toni Braxton, says balancing family life with career has been no problem for the couple.
"We got a full-time nanny. It's fun. [Sy'rai's] the best baby in the world (see "Brandy's A Mommy"). She doesn't cry or nothing. Half the time I'm playing with her and recording at the same time. It's been real good. This is my first baby. Everyday it's been something new. It's amazing to watch that baby grow up. Brandy loves it. That's her life right there."
Smith expects Brandy's album to drop by spring 2003.