All Articles Tagged "Unapologetic"

Pass Or Play: Rihanna Debuts New Music Video For “What Now”

November 16th, 2013 - By Drenna Armstrong
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The always working Rihanna took a few hours out of the end of her “Diamonds” World Tour schedule to film the video for “What Now” from her latest album, Unapologetic.

Rihanna had been positing stills of the video on Instagram to go along with her countdown of the release and driving her fans crazy with anticipation. It was hard to tell what the premise of the video would be and with Rihanna, you never know, so it was interesting to see the finished product.

The final result was actually a bit more subdued. directed by Darren Craig, Jonathan Craven and Jeff Nicholas, the video features Rihanna as the only person in a bare room clearly going through the motions as she sorts out her feelings about a love that is over.  The images are actually pretty cool as, quite often, you see Rihanna giving an “I’m losing my mind face” in the center of the silhouette of her body.  It can be equated to what happens when most people are brokenhearted: they look fine on the outside but are going crazy on the inside.  The lyrics to the song go right along with the “state of confusion” feeling she’s giving throughout the video:

I found the one, he changed my life
But was it me that changed
And he just happened to come at the right time
I’m supposed to be in love
But I’m numb again

Whatever it is, it feels like
It’s laughing at me through the glass of a two-sided mirror
Whatever it is, it’s just sitting there laughing at me
And I just wanna scream

What now? I just can’t figure it out
What now? I guess I’ll just wait it out
What now? Please tell me
What now?

There’s no one to call cause I’m just playing games with them all
The more I swear I’m happy, the more that I’m feeling alone
Cause I spent every hour just going through the motions
I can’t even get the emotions to come out
Dry as a bone, but I just wanna shout

Pretty dope. By the way, Willow Smith’s singing voice is clearly influenced by Rihanna. Anyway, check out the video and tell us what you think. Pass…or play?

Pass Or Play? K. Michelle Strolls With Delta Sigma Theta, Sheds Some Tears, And Covers Rihanna In Video For “Half Of It”

May 29th, 2013 - By Clarke Gail Baines
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When she’s not claiming certain menfolks are out here living on the down low on Love and Hip Hop Atlanta, K Michelle is working hard at taking her music career to the next level. And in the new video for the song “Half of It,” you can see all that hard work come to life. The song is a cover of sorts of Rihanna’s “Half of Me” from the Unapologetic album, which was written by Emeli Sande. But K switches up the lyrics to fit the chaotic life that she lives in front of people on television.

“Saw me on the television, actin’ up and slappin’ bitches/And I ain’t proud of how I’ve been livin’/I pray the Lord my soul’s forgiven/I can’t handle my liquor why the hell I’m drinkin?/Little girls lookin’ up to me what are they thinkin?/Cause I want them to be better than me, better than the fool they see me act on TV…and that’s just the half of it”

She goes on in the song to talk about people getting the wrong impression of her and judging the decisions she makes on television when they really don’t know the whole story. The video also features K. Michelle on tour, interacting with her fans, dancing in the club, doing photoshoots, and strolling with Delta Sigma Theta, which K is of course a member of.

All in all, the video is short and sweet, and I can say that I dig this whole shabang more than the “I just wanna f**k” song and video she debuted last month. “Half of It” lets her voice shine through a lot better and you can relate to her message a bit more. Check out the video for yourself and let us know what you think!

And in case you’ve never checked out Rihanna’s original, “Half of Me,” you can also listen to that below. Enjoy!

Rihanna Drops Art For Singles “Stay” And “Pour It Up”; Gets “Trapstar” Fresh And Canoodles With Chris Brown

January 16th, 2013 - By Clarke Gail Baines
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Rihanna Stay

The Queen Of The Single has taken time out from posting inspirational quotes on her Instagram to put out two new single covers. For the fans of her number one album Unapologetic, you’ll be excited to know that Rihanna is releasing both “Stay” and “Pour It Up” next on the radio, and you know what that means: controversial yet fashionable videos!!!! For the cover of “Stay,” the singer can be seen with her face in the nook of a man’s neck while sporting her pixie cut. Common sense would tell most people that this neck with its gold chain and white T-shirt belong to Chris Brown, and in fact, it looks like an image from the footage of them clubbing together that was used in Breezy’s confessional love triangle video from a few months back. Interesting…Anywho, the song features singer/songwriter Mikky Ekko, and Rihanna performed it on Saturday Night Live when she was the main act alongside host Anne Hathaway.


But for those that love to throw some ones and live ratchet (uh, the whole staff of MN of course), I’m sure you’ll be more excited about “Pour It Up.” You know, cause that’s what you ball out to. The singer can be seen on that cover with her “drank” in her hand, her Trapstar fitted on and rocking a baseball jersey, keeping her warm as she rocks her studded bra. I low-key feel like both covers could have come from Rihanna’s Instagram account on any given Saturday night, but maybe that’s what makes them fab. No need to pose and do the most for a simple single when you can dig in your own epic photo albums and promote your stuff for the low-low, right? So now that we know what the covers look like, which song do you prefer? Both are pretty good tracks. Let us know your thoughts below!

Sign O’ The Times? Alicia Keys’ “Girl On Fire” Knocks Rihanna From #1 Spot, But Is Singer’s Lowest Opening Sales Week

December 5th, 2012 - By Clarke Gail Baines
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This girl really is on fire. Any time you can say that you have the number one album in the country, it’s cause to celebrate. I would recommend doing it in Rihanna fashion and picking up a new Rolex.

Yep, Alicia Keys’ fifth studio album (and her sixth album including her successful Unplugged joint, which reached number one) is another winner for her and marks her fifth number one album. According to the New York Daily News via Nielsen SoundScan, the album sold 159,000 albums in its first week, knocking Rihanna from the number one spot with her album, Unapologetic. And while that would usually be okay for most cookie-cutter artists during this lagging period of record sales we’re living in, it’s actually the uber-gifted singer’s lowest opening week sales in her career. While her last album, Element of Freedom, didn’t enter the Billboard charts at number one in 2009 (it peaked at number 2, which isn’t bad, especially when you’re going head to head with international phenom Susan Boyle), it managed to sell over 400,000 copies and went on to have over a million copies picked up, going platinum. Not to take away from her number one, but this is a slow start for Keys, whose husband, Swizz Beatz, was seen on Instagram buying up a boatload of her albums to give to fans on the album’s release date. However, this is what everybody’s dealing with right now thanks to illegal downloading, services like Spotify, and honestly, a lot of the so-so music everybody is putting out that they expect people to pay for. I just can’t with these albums only having 11 or 12 songs on them. That’s on some EP stuff!

Anyway, I think with the right second single and video, Keys can help do an extra push for sales, as was the case with “Unthinkable” off of The Element of Freedom. Can I recommend “Listen To Your Heart” or “Fire We Make” with Maxwell? I think those have the right tempo or groove for people to appreciate and jam to while in their cars and in their cribs. But no matter what the sales do end up coming out to, keep that music coming, girl! Alicia is still one of my favorites.

Did you pick up the album? Why or why not?

We Thought It Was Nobody’s Business! Rihanna Instagrams Picture Of Sleeping Chris Brown

November 25th, 2012 - By Drenna Armstrong
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Is Rihanna trolling us now on the internet streets now?

We know they’re friends (whether there are benefits involved or not remains anyone’s guess) and they hang out and all that good stuff but they keep telling the masses to stay out of their affairs. So if that’s the case, why did Rihanna need to send out a picture of a sleeping Chris Brown? I mean, he’s laid out, shirtless and has pants sagging on somebody’s bed.  Chris is a notorious Bart Simpson fan so its pretty obvious that’s actually him in the picture.

Here’s the “funny” thing about being a celebrity: you beg and plead for people to leave you alone and can’t believe it when they actually do just that. Rihanna and Chris Brown have managed to bore people into oblivion and so to get us talking again, she shows us that they’re together. So sure, since we talk celebrities on here, we’ll do you that solid of giving you some shine but there’s not much more to see here.

We started leaving you two alone quite some time ago, Rihanna, so please leave us alone!

By the way, yes Chris’ ex Karrueche Tran saw the photo on Instagram and “liked” it. Oh to be young and ratchet…

My Bad: Rihanna Apologizes To Fans And Media For 7-7-7 Tour Disaster

November 21st, 2012 - By Jazmine Denise Rogers
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Source: WENN

Rihanna’s 7-7-7 publicity tour concluded yesterday evening with an apology to passengers in an effort to ensure that there is no bad blood being harbored by fans and member’s of the media that accompanied the singer on her 7-day, 7-country tour aboard her private 777 jet. It seems that fans and press members alike were a little ticked with Rih Rih as they were barely able to spend anytime with her besides brief sightings during baggage claims and for drinks during the first day of the tour. Jeff Rosenthall of  Rolling Stone shared, “We haven’t seen Rihanna offstage since the first day, unless you count her popping up at baggage claim for a few moments on the morning of the second.” 

To make matters worst, several members of the media reported that there was minimal sleep and food, which you could imagine probably had folks aboard that flight a bit testy. There were also random reports of an Australian media person who streaked through the plane claiming that he was delirious after going for  extended periods of time without food or sleep. According to The YBF, Rih Rih’s half apology for the drama went something like this:

“I know you guys got barely any dirt. …But I had to be good. I still sound like s**t.”

“I had to preserve my health. Normally, I’d be back here popping bottles with y’all. I had to preserve my voice. I was worried about my body more than partying on the plane, so I had to just sleep whenever I could. I hope you guys had as much fun as I did.”

“It’s impossible to spend time with everybody, and I’m sorry I didn’t. But this was excellent and I would definitely do it again.”

Um glad you enjoyed yourself, too bad no one else did and your passengers are calling the trip a nightmare. And what about the poor living conditions and nearly starving your passengers to death? Maybe she’ll get it right next time.

Jazmine Denise is a writer living in New York. Follow her on Twitter @jazminedenise

Pass Or Play: Rihanna Smokes A Girl’s Best Friend And Does Other Confusing Things In “Diamonds” Video

November 10th, 2012 - By Clarke Gail Baines
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If you missed out on the premiere of Rihanna’s “Diamonds” video this week, no worries, we’ve got it here. And no disrespect, but I can’t say that you missed out on much anyway.

The singer, who is releasing her seventh album, Unapologetic, on November 19, dropped the visuals earlier in the week, and depending on who you are and what you like, you’ll either love it or do the Kanye shrug. The video contains a mixture of different images, settings and scenarios that, according to director Anthony Mandler, were put together to set up the right emotion that matches the songs many changes and drama. So no, there isn’t a real storyline here. But we do get to see Ri Ri roll up diamonds and smoke them (everybody seems to love to do the blowing smoke thing, I guess it’s cool), float in water looking very ethereal, standing amongst chaos in a world gone to war, running from a car planning to hit her, watching her pull her hand away from her lover, and observing two very beautiful horses running together.  Hey, it’s not “Thriller,” but it gets the point across. Plus, it actually makes you enjoy the song a bit more, and she looks gorgeous in it, as she has been looking fab these days. However, I think one time viewing it is good enough for me. But you check out the video and let us know if you’re feeling it. Cool?

Is this a pass or play for you? 

Rihanna Plays Word Association With Andy Cohen: Chris Brown = Dope

November 9th, 2012 - By Brande Victorian
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Rihanna is starting to make her media rounds to promote her new album, “Unapologetic,” and yesterday she stopped by Facebook’s NYC office to do a live interview with Andy Cohen.  The Bravo TV host is known for getting lots of good info out of the housewives and he did a pretty good job of picking Rih Rih’s brain too — like what’s up with her and Breezy, what’s this “Nobodies Business” song about, and who she really wants to work with.

For starters, Andy had Rihanna play his word association game “Spill the Tea,” forcing her to say the first thing that comes to mind for each of these artists. Here’s what she said:

Kanye: “Genius.”
Jay-Z:“Even more genius.”
Mariah Carey: “Her voice is an instrument.  It’s unreal really.”
Beyonce:“Gorgeous and a stab to my ego.”
Mary J. Blige:“Power.”
Nicki Minaj:“A**.”
Eminem:“The s**t.”
Chris Brown:“He’s pretty dope too.” He’s kinda alright.”

On the note of Breezy’s dopeness, Andy asked Rihanna if they’re officially together, to which she simply replied “No. Not together.” She had a little more to say about their new music collabo, “Nobodies Business,” though.”

“Basically [it’s] the way I look at everything regarding my personal life. Even though you have to witness it, it still is mine,” she said. “This is mine at this point, and when it gets to my music, I’ll give and I’ll give, and I just feel like I need to keep a little bit for me that I get to decide.” “If I had it my way, it would be really nobody’s business.”

Check out the full interview here. Are you excited for Rihanna and Chris Brown’s new song?

Dangerously In Love? Rihanna Releases “Lost In Paradise” From Upcoming Album (Pass Or Play?)

November 8th, 2012 - By Victoria Uwumarogie
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It might be wrong but it feels right! That’s Rihanna’s mantra, or at least it is on this new cut, “Lost In Paradise” from her upcoming release, Unapologetic. On the track, which is laced with a pretty haunting electro-beat (one she hums on top of), the singer croons about going through a love that is delusional–among other things–and trying to ignore a broken heart in order to stay in a union that’s miserable on paper, but satisfies the hell out of her: “I can see the darkness, flashing lights, all my fears, won’t deny, Let me stay, lost in paradise.” I guess you could call it the flip version of “We Found Love,” but whatever you call it, the Rihanna Navy is probably going to make it a hit if it makes its way to the radio.

Can’t front, I was definitely nodding my head to this one, because a moody jam from Rihanna is usually a banger. It definitely seems that with this new album, Rihanna is going back to a darker sound that has a bit of the techno-pop edge that her last two albums showcased, but with much deeper lyrics (seriously, we all know Talk That Talk was basically a sex album). I’m interested to see what the album will be working with when it drops on November 19. Check the track out below and let us know what you think! Pass or play?

Dynamic Duet: Is The Rihanna/Chris Brown Collab “Nobodies Business” Good For Their Careers?

November 8th, 2012 - By Ann Brown
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Rihanna arriving to the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show yesterday. Photo by Charles Sykes/Invision/AP

It has been confirmed. Rihanna teamed up with Chris Brown — musically — for a track called “Nobodies Business” on her upcoming album, Unapologetic. The album also features collaborations with Eminem, Future and Mikky Ekko. It is set for release on Nov. 19.

So is “Nobodies Business” a good business move? Or will it backfire? We asked a few music industry pros what they thought.

Lee Cadena, owner of  Lee Cadena Management, has been in the business for more than two decades, so he has seen his share of artist controversy. “As an artist manager with a background in marketing/promotions and PR, I can tell you the Rihanna/Chris Brown situation makes for public voyeurism, conversation and scrutiny… all of which equals sales. It pushes tweets, Facebook postings and tickles all social media platforms, which from a business standpoint is great,” says Cadena, who has worked with the likes of  Teena Marie, Snoop Dogg, and Mary J. Blige.

Radio producer/personality Portia Kirkland agrees. “There’s music and then there’s the business. As a music marketer, you think hits, sales, synergy, creativity, but also free expression. Both Rihanna and Chris Brown are highly talented and I believe can create great music together,” she points out.

Loyal fans of both will probably read a message in the music, looking for a deeper meaning from the song. “I don’t see the collaboration disturbing the fan base unless it says ‘we haven’t grown; we haven’t healed; and we are the same couple that we were three years ago’,” Kirkland, who has also worked at 1017 Brick Squad where she handled marketing for French Montana, Nicki Minaj, Waka Flocka, points out. “Their collaboration should be deeper than just having a hot record. I think Rihanna and Chris should send a message to their fans that ‘we’re human, we’ve learned our lesson; and moving forward in a healthier space.’  Music is a powerful platform and Rihanna and Chris should use it to highlight their growth and healing. That’s what classic hits and strong brands are made of — life’s lessons, second chances and change.”

The boldness of the move also continues with the philosophy of Rihanna’s brand—one of a daring and independent artist. “[I]t will work to solidify her independent and unpredictable persona.  I think it’s a good idea because she should not let the public guide or determine her individual choices in life,” notes former record company executive Jackie Rhinehart, who is CEO and president of entertainment marketing firm Organic Soul Marketing. “That plus sex – implied– will sell, sell, sell!”

At the end of the day, however, the music still has to be good. A bad song, no matter how intriguing won’t have staying power. “The controversy may work in the moment and drive people to the record, but is the music good enough for consumers to purchase ten years from now?” says Cadena. “Building a career on quality music is key for catalog sales, which is what you want as an artist. Will it be considered a classic? Doubtful, but only time will tell. Until then, Rihanna… keep ya’ dukes up.”