Sisters never listen to their younger brothers. Brandy and Ray J, apparently, are no exception.
While Brandy is busy putting together another sitcom, Ray J is releasing a single called "Quit Actin'."
The song, which recently hit the clubs and will arrive at radio stations this month, isn't exactly a message from Ray to his sister. Nor is it a reflection on his own career, which has encompassed numerous appearances on TV and film.
The song is a message to the ladies who frequent the club scene. One of the featured lyrics is "Quit acting like the blue ain't ice/ And quit frontin' like the whips ain't tight."
R&B mogul R. Kelly produced and also sings on "Quit Actin'," which is the lead single from Ray J's Raydiation, due June 7 (see "R. Kelly, Timbaland Help Ray J Bring The Heat On Raydiation").
"Me and him got a lot to relate to in life and so when I was out there [in Chicago], we had a lot of fun just chillin'," Ray J said. "The song came about from just having fun."
Ray J selected "Quit Actin' " for the single over several other close seconds, including "Sexy," a duet with Mya he described as "a real dark but real sexy record"; "Keep Sweatin'," a Rodney Jerkins-produced dance tune featuring Fat Joe he called "straight for the clubs"; and "War Is Over," a political duet with Brandy.
The siblings recently scored big in Europe with a joint cover of Phil Collins' "Another Day in Paradise." The hit enabled them to tour together, an experience Brandy relished.
"He's great, and our voices together on that one track just sound amazing," Brandy said. "I know his potential; I know where he can go as an artist, as a man and as an individual."
Raydiation, which also includes production from Timbaland, marks a reinvention of sorts for Ray J, who is stemming away from rapping and showcasing his singing and songwriting abilities.
"It really shows a more mature side of me," he said. "I put my heart and my passion into it. ... The album takes you in and out of relationships, just everyday relationship problems ... then it goes into the clubs and into the bedroom. It's all in the album."
Jerkins, who has produced hits for Britney Spears, Justin Timberlake and Brandy, said he jumped at the chance to work with Ray J after working with him in the past and hearing how different his new demos sounded.
"I think, over the years, he's grown up and he's matured into the artist that he really is," Jerkins said. "Now you're about to see the real Ray J."
Ray J — who just finished Seventeen magazine's Rock the Runway mall tour and has also been working on TV show "106 & Park" and his own BET countdown show — is looking at reels to select a director for the "Quit Actin' " video. He's also in talks to tour with Destiny's Child this summer.
Ray J just signed to Sanctuary Urban, whose president is Destiny's Child manager (and Beyoncé's father) Mathew Knowles.
"Mathew sent me down to his Houston boot camp and it was for real," Ray J said. "I learned a lot from being down there and I'm still learning. I even told Mathew a couple weeks ago, 'Look, whenever you need me to go back to boot camp, let me know, 'cause that's real good for me.' 'Perfect practice makes perfect' is what my mom always says."