R&B legend Toni Braxton is known for her soulful sound and her stunning lyrics. The songstress has sold over 67 million records worldwide, winning seven Grammys, nine Billboard Music Awards, and a slew of other amazing recognitions.
The songstress began singing in her church choir as a child and eventually began a professional career with her sisters in a group titled, The Braxtons. However, the “Seven Whole Days” legend caught the attention of L.A. Reid and Babyface of LaFace Records and went solo.
Though she is known as Babyface’s muse and for launched her career on the soundtrack for Eddie Murphy’s 1992 film, Boomerang, Braxton’s hit single, “Love Should’ve Brought You Home” was originally meant for another legendary songstress.
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Toni Braxton is Babyface’s muse
The Braxton Family Values star has called singer/producer Kenneth “Babyface” Edmonds her musical husband. Babyface discovered Braxton when she was still singing with her sisters in 1990, and the rest is history.
Babyface has penned some of Braxton’s most iconic hits including “Seven Whole Days,” “You Mean The World To Me,” “You’re Makin’ Me High,” and “Let It Flow.” In fact, following Braxton’s diagnosis with lupus and her subsequent retirement, Babyface convinced her to return to music. He and the songstress teamed up for the 2014 album, Love, Marriage & Divorce.
Babyface has spoken only about how he gets into writing mode for Braxton’s songs. His process includes drinking a bottle of water, leaving a little water in his mouth, and singing with a ton of emotion so he can impersonate her velvety voice.
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This is how Babyface wrote ‘Love Shoulda Brought You Home’
When Eddie Murphy asked Babyface to work on the Boomerang soundtrack for him, the producer knew he had his work cut out for him. However, he and Reid decided to use the film itself as inspiration.
“We got to watch it as it was being made,” he explained to Eurweb. “We were able to see scenes of it as well. So as we were writing music for it, the whole thing was new for us because we hadn’t written for a film at that point. There were particular songs that we wrote for the film, watching the dailies and going on and then watching the whole part of when Halle said to Eddie Murphy…I forget the character’s name at that particular point, but she was very emotional and then he said, ‘I love you,’ and she came with the famous line, and she said ‘Love? Love should have brought your ass home last night. So it was like, ‘Ding!’”
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Anita Baker was originally supposed to sing ‘Love Shoulda Brought You Home’
Initially, Babyface wanted Anita Baker to sing the song, but she passed on it due to a personal commitment. However, a recently signed Braxton had demoed the song, and Baker suggested Babyface and Reid just stick her on the song. The rest was history.
“When we wrote that, actually, we wrote it for Anita Baker,” the music man revealed. “And we sent it to Anita Baker and she passed on it. Hence, we had already signed up Toni, and Toni was waiting in the wings. Toni even demoed the song. At that particular point, it was like, ‘Alright, this is Toni’s calling’ and that obviously became a very important song for that whole album…. that’s what you called a meant-to-be moment.”
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