Britney’s Best Lost Songs

I fell down a particularly deep research hole this week when I started looking up unreleased Britney Spears songs — the woman has almost as deep a catalog of lost songs as she does released songs! And some of them are just as good as her best available work, though on several it’s clear why they didn’t make the album cut: Sometimes they simply don’t fit in with the overall vibe of the record she was working on at the time, but many feature a different Britney “voice” than we’re used to. I don’t even mean a crazy auto-tuned voice — I mean she’s singing in a different style than her trademark nasal-robot style. Sometimes, that even means some relatively strong, natural singing. (Fun fact: She sang Whitney Houston’s “I Have Nothing” to secure her record deal, so she must be capable of something besides the nutso sound effects we’ve come to know her for.)

Here, some of my favorites:

“911” gives us a smoother, less guttural vocal than we’re used to from Britney:

“Everyday” reminds me of the surprisingly straightforward vocal on Britney’s recent single, “Perfume”:

“Guilty” features her truly impressive low end — ladies don’t get enough credit for strong low-octave range, but it’s hard to sing there, y’all:

She sang “I Will Always Love You” at 11 in this adorable home movie of a local baseball game performance, included just because it’s so cute:

“Ouch” shows some soprano range:

“Pleasure You” is a fun, slinky number in that midtempo range she’s so weirdly good at:

“Rebellion” shows some more maturity — I like when she does that sexy, womanly vibrato:

This is a compilation from my favorite YouTube genre, “Britney Spears CAN Sing!” — she had that extraordinary low range, even as a kid, and don’t get me started on that growl:

“To Love Let Go” gets even more mature, kinda lounge-singery:

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