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20 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another good CD by Monica!
If you want to know what's going on with her or where her mind is at listen to her CDs. I feel that someone espically females can relate to her songs. They CD flows from beginning to end. And when you listen to some of the words to the songs you'll be like "what the" or just say damn! Hopefully Monica has some staying power in this business b/c she is truly talented...
Published on October 3, 2006 by Mirage08

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16 of 20 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars The Makings of Me - 3.5 stars
Two things made me delay getting this disc - I hated Monica's cover shot and wasn't sure what the purpose of her posing like that was AND the release of EVERYTIME THE BEAT DROPS as the lead off single. I was very disappointed in this choice and feared that the entire album would contain songs like this & being unfamiliar with the "snap" music craze, I just didn't get...
Published on February 11, 2007 by Geminigirl


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20 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another good CD by Monica!, October 3, 2006
This review is from: The Makings Of Me (Audio CD)
If you want to know what's going on with her or where her mind is at listen to her CDs. I feel that someone espically females can relate to her songs. They CD flows from beginning to end. And when you listen to some of the words to the songs you'll be like "what the" or just say damn! Hopefully Monica has some staying power in this business b/c she is truly talented. Definite reommendation.

Fav Tracks: Everytime the Beat Drop, Hell No, A Dozen Roses, Why Her
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16 of 20 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars The Makings of Me - 3.5 stars, February 11, 2007
By 
Geminigirl (Philadelphia, PA United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Makings Of Me (Audio CD)
Two things made me delay getting this disc - I hated Monica's cover shot and wasn't sure what the purpose of her posing like that was AND the release of EVERYTIME THE BEAT DROPS as the lead off single. I was very disappointed in this choice and feared that the entire album would contain songs like this & being unfamiliar with the "snap" music craze, I just didn't get it.

With the release of A DOZEN ROSES (YOU REMIND ME) - my interest was piqued enough for me to give the disc a chance. I really love the use of the Curtis Mayfield sample from THE MAKINGS OF YOU (one of my fave tracks from the CLAUDINE soundtrack!) and I LOVE the video, Monica looks fabulous and she & Jamie Hector sizzle as a screen couple!

I had problems with the following tracks:

SIDELINE HO - although her vocal performance is beautiful & the music production is pretty, I don't care for the lyrics at all so I usually skip this track.

HELL NO (LEAVE HOME) - although her vocal performance is strong, the lyrics and music production are unremarkable

RAW - awful track, can't say anything complementary about this one

The others that stood out to me in a good way & that I enjoy listening to in addition to A DOZEN ROSES are:

WHY HER? - really pretty mid-tempo song featuring an exceptional chorus

GETAWAY, DOIN' ME RIGHT & MY EVERYTHING - are vintage Monica tracks featuring strong vocal & music production

GOTTA MOVE ON - the melody reminds me of A Taste of Honey's hit, SUKI YAKI; it's a catchy track with one negative - Missy Elliot's shout outs during the track

I'd recommend this disc to Monica fans with a word of caution - it's not a strong/cohesive album like THE BOY IS MINE or even AFTER THE STORM. I gave it 3.5 stars because there are more than a few enjoyable mid-tempo & ballady songs that are truly vintage Monica but I'm confused as to what direction she & her producers were going with this project. I hope this doesn't spell the end of her recording career as Monica is one of the more talented songstresses on the r&b scene who just needs to get with producers who can fully utilize & showcase her beautful voice.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Comeback In The Making, October 3, 2006
This review is from: The Makings Of Me (Audio CD)
When Monica released her second "The Boy is Mine" in 1998 she became one of the most succesful R&B artists at the time and you saw her frequently in media and on the music charts. But it took her 5 years to come up with a follower, when eventually "After the Storm" was released in 2003 alot of things had happened in the ever changing world of music. New trends, New Producers and further competiton. Monica deciced to trade her successful Pop/R&B producer Dallas Austin from the "The Boy is Mine" album with Hip Hop producer Missy Elliott. She also repalced the soft and tender style with a more thuggish image and more beat oriented production instead of well crafted R&B with great hooks. "So Gone" was great, but other then that her last album was a dissapointment. It felt like the production was taking over her own image and she was no longer in control of what she was doing, even if she did co-write some songs. My expectations on her new album called "The Makings of Me" weren't big, considering that the producer list looked simular to her last album and that she had been completely invisible for the last 3 years. Now, how does it look?

On "The Makings of Me" Monica doesn't co-write any song but it does feel like it's less thughish and much more personal. Producers are Missy Elliott and Jermaine Dupri, Swizz Beats among others but this time Monica got more control and there are more potential hitsingles too. First single was the obligatory club song "Everytime a Beat Drop" with Franchise Boyz, which is the worst of this album. A club song anyone could have came up with. But that is only one of two club songs with Swizz Beatz produced "Raw" which sounds more polished with an elegant piano backround, only if Swizz could learn to shut his mouth during the hook cause it feels very trying. There are plenty of better numbers though, Curtis Mayfield sampled "A Dozen Roses" with a flava of classic soul. I wonder why it isn't called "The Makings Of You" cause that is what they sing. This song is Misst produced and will be the next single I think. "Sideline Ho" deals with infedelity, "Ain't you tired of being on the sideline?/Tired of getting yours after I get mine?/ baby second place don't get a prize when you gone relize you wasting your time" maybe it deals with her relation with Young Buck, who knows. I think this is the best song of this album.

"Why Her" is a soul ballad even if it is Dupri produced. It also deals with infedelity and the courage to leave a man that isn't teating you right, and sounds as it could be personal, Monica even said during the bridge "Now ladies, you know I speak from experience right?". "Hell No (Leaving Home) feautures Twista and is also a emotional slow paced song about the cheating man. The sample sounds like taken directly from a Chinese Restaurant but the song isn't bad, Twista plays a very small part though. "Doin Me Right" a Missy Elliott produced sweet midtempo about being in love with the perfect man. It's one of the best, but why does she always have to insert her vocals into her productions a la Puff Daddy?. That always bothered me. Midtempo "My Everything" also deals with a great relationship, she claims she's "never been in love like this before". "Gotta Move On" is a slow-paced Song with cool beats, one again Missy's vocals are annoying. Closer, "Getaway" is a adult contemporary power ballad with piano backround. Good but forgettable.

Overall, Alot of things happened to Monica during the last 3 years, rocky relationships, giving birth etc. I thought she was away from the spotlight for too long to cope uo with contemporary music trends, But this album is better then I thought and the songs that appear are mostly songs suited for Monica's voice and style with sometimes personal lyrics. It isn't perfect or betten then "The Boy Is Mine" but certainly one step up from "After the Storm". It also got a few very good songs that could make it on the charts. Way to go!.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars More Like 'The Makings of Mess!', February 8, 2007
This review is from: The Makings Of Me (Audio CD)
Monica has had a career of ups and downs. She started out pretty decent with her debut album Miss Thang. Her second album The Boy Is Mine was the pinnacle of her career, with the platinum single "The Boy Is Mine" easily the number one song that everybody remembers from Monica. She showed a little edginess then when she traded verses with Brandy on the song. But no one could have foreseen the future, as Miss Thang gets a little attitude and turns into Miss Ghetto Booty for her latest album The Makings Of Me.

"Everytime The Beat Drops" is the first example of her newfound ghetto mentality, enlisting the help of Dem Franchise Boyz for the hip-hop portion. Missy Elliott produces a lackluster song with a retro feel to it titled "A Dozen Roses." Monica then reverts back to a potty mouth for "Sideline Ho," an attempt at sounding 'street' to address all the hood rats putting up with the no-good men out here. The fruitless songs continue with the mundane "Why Her" and "Hell No" featuring Twista. "Doin Me Right" features more foul-mouth antics from Monica and lazy production from Missy. Swizz Beatz provides an uninspiring beat for another street anthem titled "Raw." She switches up to a smoothed out ballad called "My Everything" that we are more accustom to hearing from the ATL native. Missy gives another snoozer of a beat with "Gotta Move On" while "Getaway" is another power ballad that comes off as a wonderful Monica classic.

It becomes clearly evident while listening to The Makings Of Me that Monica didn't really have much of a platform for this album. It basically sounds like a bunch of singles that were recorded over the years and slapped together to make up a 10-track collection that she calls an album. Taking in all of her previous successes, it's a shame that The Makings Of Me is the last thing people will remember Monica by. With the flop of her previous cd After The Storm as well as the inevitable demise of The Makings Of Me, she probably won't have another album after this considering there wasn't much of one this time around.
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5.0 out of 5 stars FINALLY!!!!!, May 23, 2007
A Kid's Review
This review is from: The Makings Of Me (Audio CD)
FINALLY MONICA IS BACK

AND NOT TO MENTION REAL MUSIC

MONICA IS THE BEST TALENT OUT THERE

THIS ALBUM IS ONE OF THE BEST I'VE HEARD SINCE KEYSHIA COLE'S ALBUM

THEY ARE BOTH THE BEST ARTISTS' OUT THERE SO I DON'T KNOW WHY THEY DON'T GET ENOUGH ATTENTION.

GIVE THE ATTENTION TO REAL PEOPLE NOT PEOPLE LIKE BEYONCE AND JT

THEY ARE EVERYWHERE I GO AND I'M REALLY GETTING SICK OF THEM

THEY BOTH SUCK. SO PEOPLE BUY MONICA'S ALBUM AND KEYSHIA COLE'S ALBUM

BECAUSE THEY ARE REAL TALENT AND REAL
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars 3-1/2 stars -- It's really not that bad, people, September 12, 2007
This review is from: The Makings Of Me (Audio CD)
I absolutely adored Monica's work throughout her first and second albums. What really made her appeal to me was that she was so young but she was still making such great music. But then she took on an all thugged-out persona for her third U.S. album After the Storm, and I hated that album not just because of that, but because the subject matter was made too ghetto. Thankfully, it's easier to stand on The Makings of Me.

I don't know what's going on on the album cover either, but the reason why I think this album has garnered so many negative reviews is because people are comparing it to her first two albums. Now, I'll admit that this is no Miss Thang, and it DEFINITELY isn't as stellar as The Boy Is Mine (also, Monica isn't the only parent to curse on her albums, people), but there are still decent enough moments. "Why Her" and "My Everything" rank among the best tracks, but my favorite would have to be the final track, "Getaway", which actually does remind me of the days when she first came out.

There are still a few duds, however. "Sideline H*" is too ghetto for its own good, and the Swizz Beatz-assisted "Raw" has too much going on, especially before each chorus. Also, there are a number of lyrical faux pas. While "A Dozen Roses" is good, the second verse has Monica talking about the 25th day of Christmas. And while "Everytime Tha Beat Drop" (an obvious single due to its being censored as well as "Y'all know what this is!") has Dem Franchize Boyz written all over it, it really isn't horrible; the only odd thing is that Monica keeps bringing up the bankhead bounce. (Hey, Mo, 1996 called.)

But there are more pros on here than cons, one of which is that Monica can still sing (although she really needs to stop trying to rap). I really liked her better when she wasn't a thug (especially since "Street Symphony" said she didn't want to BE with thugs), but it looks like that what the makings of her constitute now, so we'll have to live with it.

Anthony Rupert
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars TIGHT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!, March 13, 2007
This review is from: The Makings Of Me (Audio CD)
this album is the bomb,i was quite impatient when i heard she was releasing this album because i didn't buy AFTER THE STORM.no doubt though my favorite album by monica that i could just listen to nonstop would be the MISS THANG album. i believe its way better than THE BOY IS MINE and for her voice to be so powerful on tracks like JUST ONE OF DEM DAYS and WHY I LOVE YOU SO MUCH at only 13 or 14,whoa that gurl had real talent and still does, proving it on songs like A DOZEN ROSES,WHY HER,HELL NO,and GETAWAY.my favorites are:

EVERYTIME THA BEAT DROPS

WHY HER

HELL NO

RAW

THIS CD IS BUMPIN' AND I AVISE YOU TO PICK IT UP.PEACE!!!!!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Monica The Makings of Me, March 9, 2010
This review is from: The Makings Of Me (Audio CD)
Im going 2 B straight up i go this album and i simply love it.I love everything that monica has done and this is no different.Some of the reviews that i read on here kind of aggravated me,because monica has done so much in giving us good music and theirs only so much she can do,i just really hate when people try 2 expect 2 much when she trying 2 please all her fans,but that separates the true fans from the untrue fans what ever monica does is fine.Track 1.[Everytime Tha Beat drop]A nice way 2 start an album ,great up-tempo club banger that i truely enjoy.Track 2.[A Dozen Roses(You Remind Me)is a great mid-tempo explaining her love and how he makes her feel.Track 3.[Sideline Ho is a slower tempo going after the other woman on the side and letting her know who the main chick.Track 4.[Why Her?]another slower tempo song laced with a piano sound,basically asks the same question that a lot of women have after being cheated on.Track 5.[Hell No(Leave Home)appears to be her trying to hold on and save a relationship that he isn't interested in anymore nice mid tempo trading rap flows with twista its dope.Track 6.[Doin' Me Right]nice mid tempo song explaining how her man is treating her from giving her what she want to just saying he love her,Missy did a graet job with this also.Track 7.[Raw]is the second up-tempo track next 2 everytime tha beat drop and somewhat the same has a nice club field and makes you want 2 dance swizz beats did pretty go with this.Track 8.[My Everything]is a ballad that i cant quit listening 2.Monica is realizing that she has a good thing,really shows her maturity.Track 9.[Gotta Move On]another mid tempo inspired track by missy .Monica gets off on this track letting him know that your not worthy of my love so im out the door,really love missy's input on the album.Track 10.[Getaway] the closing track to the album is a sweet and personal ballad that shows monica singin out her emotions and all that shes been through,all the pain and heartache and languishing feelings.Very beautiful song and way to end this album.When listening 2 it,its kind of like reading a diary,thats very personal.If UR a true and loyal fan 2 this is a must have in your collection and 2 good 2 be overlooked.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars 3 1/2 stars....with a dozen roses, May 26, 2008
By 
Mikeisha Best (Mitchellville, Maryland United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Makings Of Me (Audio CD)
This is Monica's laziest album to date because its duration is just 38.3 minutes, her vocals are average at best, and the lyrics aren't profound enough for me. "The Makings of Me" is still a good album, though. Of the ten tracks, eight of them received 3 ˝ stars from me. "Everytime the Beat Drops" was the first single released to radio. Jermaine Dupri produced this song, and, while I enjoy and value most of his work, I was left disappointed with this song for I could never get into it. The beat is alright, though. Monica Arnold never has had an all-out bad album, but some of her albums are good and some are very good. Ironically, this album falls in between good and very good.

This album has a very laid-back feel; most of the songs are ballads or mid-tempo. "Getaway" and "A Dozen Roses" are the albums best moments by far, though. When I first took a listen to "A Dozen Roses", I was very impressed because the song had creative lyrics, excellent use of a sample (it samples Curtis Mayfield's song called "The Makings of You", a song that has been redone tons of times), and a catchy beat. When I heard this song, I knew I had to hear the rest of the album. "Sideline H*" is very real lyrically. There are more "sideline h*s than we can shake a stick at. I admire Monica for calling them out because women who continue to sleep with men when they know they have someone else is extremely trifling; these women need to rewind this until they understand the point that Monica is making. The production on "Why Her" definitely sounds like it could be on Mariah Carey's album, "E=MC2." Really, it sounds a lot like a song on that album called "Bye Bye." Further, Monica likes to rap suddenly. It is cute sometimes, but sometimes her "raps" seem out of place and very unnecessary; she's so much more effective when singing. Also, Missy Elliot need not look at Monica's albums as an opportunity to say whatever she feels at the moment. It's such an irritant.

Monica did a nice job this time around with "The Makings of Me." Music listeners, particularly R&B fans should enjoy this album if they love Monica and/or laid back sounds.

Mikeisha's Top 5

1. "A Dozen Roses"
2. "Getaway"
3. "Sideline H*"
4. "My Everything"
5. "Gotta Move On"
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Makings of an Excellent Album, April 25, 2008
This review is from: The Makings Of Me (Audio CD)
Monica is one of those artists who, despite having already proved longevity through a slew of solid albums, continue to do poorly in terms of sales. As her lowest selling album to date, one would assume that the issues had much to do with the quality of the album. And one would then be horribly mistaken. It seems this album was judged based on everything BUT the music. The album cover was largely panned because, apparently, a woman of Monica's age is not allowed to be partially nude, despite the fact that it was tastefully done. Besides, several artists the same age, if not older than Monica have come out with covers that were much worse. In addition, the album suffered from what most considered a poorly chosen lead single, as it capitalized on the latest trend. Apparently, playing on a successful style of music at the time of one's album release is a negative thing. If that's the case, artists have been doing it wrong for years. However, should anyone actually listen to the album itself, it is not such a huge departure from Monica's usual style, and her material as always works to her advantage.

Despite Monica herself having said that lead single "Everytime Tha Beat Drop" was intended to be a purely fun song, people continue to take the track far too seriously. This song pandered to the faltering "snap music" (whatever that is) trend, causing many to assume Monica was trying to appeal to a younger audience. Younger being relative, I would assume, since Monica herself is only twenty-six. It is baffling why this song did not do better. It's a catchy track, and Monica's vocals are strong and clear enough not to be overcome by the beat. Listening to the rest of the album, it is clear that this song did not represent the style, so all the criticism of "selling out" was really unnecessary. "A Dozen Roses" is more in line with what people would expect from Monica, yet it too inexplicably failed to garner much success. Monica delivers a wonderfully controlled yet powerful vocal performance on this track about all the good things her lover reminds her of. Throw in a cleverly interpolated Curtis Mayfield sample, and this truly stands out as one of the strongest album tracks.

"Sideline Ho" further cements the status of this album as horribly misunderstood. In this case, Monica was panned for accepting her man cheating on her. In reality, this song was inspired by a real-life experience where the woman Monica's boyfriend was cheating with got too comfortable. Thus, Monica is letting her know that despite all his attention, she is still not his main interest. This track is definitely another highlight, showing Monica at some of her most personal, and with all her vocal and lyrical strength. And the highlights just keep on coming with the next two tracks. First is the touching "Why Her?", written by Jermaine Durpi at the height of his fame after writing a major hit for Mariah. This track could easily stand among Monica's best ballads. Lyrically, this is one of the best songs this album has to offer, which combines with the controlled yet emotive vocal delivery to make a true classic. "Hell No" has Monica trading verses with fast-paced rapper Twista, and she holds her own quite well. It's clear that Monica is no rapper, but this Bryan-Michael Cox produced track has anthem written all over it, without the usual annoyance factor that comes attached to that label. The passionate vocals on the verses really sell this one.

"Doin' Me Right" is a fan favourite, although I would say there are better tracks available here. As with many Missy Elliott productions, it would be better if it she had left out her own part toward the beginning. It serves no real purpose, and ends up being more annoying than anything else. This track has Monica extolling the virtues of her man, and although it is a very sweet song, it is not particularly memorable in light of several of the previous tracks. Nonetheless, it maintains its position as a strong album track. "Raw" is another fan favourite, although personally I found it much more of a grower. The production during Swizz Beatz's rap is almost too busy, making it quite distracting, although it clears up nicely during Monica's parts. Like the song before, it's a solid album track but not particularly memorable. As a whole, it doesn't particularly go anywhere. Monica has done much better, both on this album and on previous efforts. "My Everything" brings us back closer to the realm of the better material this album has to offer. Monica provides a beautiful, controlled yet very meaningful performance that works to her advantage. It allows for the sweetness of the lyrics to speak for themselves. The bridge sounds especially sweet, both lyrically and production-wise. The only possible issue is that some may think the song drags on a little too long.

"Gotta Move On" has Oriental-sounding production, which unfortunately contains the standard Missy Elliott yells, albeit muffled, of "Holla, new Monica". As if we didn't have enough of that on the last album. Monica raps a little in this one, which brings something relatively new to the track. It doesn't hinder it, but it doesn't especially help either. The sung verses showcase Monica at her best, with simple vocals over quite a basic arrangement. It gives Monica room to shine, without requiring her to overdo it in attempt to match an overpowering beat. Finally, this short album concludes with the introspective "Getaway". This track is an outstanding way to close off the album, where its just Monica and a piano singing about the changes in the industry. Getaway particularly sounds convincing, given Monica's past of having to deal with personal issues in the spotlight. That Monica did not write this track is utterly irrelevant. It is the entirely the subdued yet passionate vocal delivery combined with the simplistic backing which sell the track. This is certainly Monica at her most personal, and sonically at her best.

Overall Mark: 4/5

This album appears to be one that was panned through no fault of its own. True, the lead single was not representative, but then it was never intended to be. The cover could, arguably, have been more modest, but CDs are bought primarily for the music. The art is just extra. Many fans were also, understandably, dissatisfied with the length (or lack thereof) of this album. Aside from a couple of the more mediocre offerings, the song quality here certainly makes up for at least part of the issue. It is too bad that artists are falling into a trend of offering shorter and shorter albums, yet wondering why the fans are not willing to pay full price for them. Nonetheless, in spite of, or perhaps because of its length, The Makings of Me provides an excellent introspective album. Although it does not quite match Monica's earlier classics, it is certainly on par to have similar longevity.
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The Makings Of Me
The Makings Of Me by Monica (Audio CD - 2006)
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