Bajan superstar Rihanna has risen from small time island starlet to one of the biggest names in the industry in a matter of years and with the ‘We Found Love’ star set to release her sixth album Talk That Talk in six years this month, TaleTela wanted to take a look at the cost of the success, and to what extent – if at all – the singer is beginning to lose herself within the record sales.
If Rihanna’s creative output is an indication of her personal world, life was never the same for the 23-year-old after the pre-Grammys altercation with then boyfriend singer Chris Brown, and it seemed that the episode opened the eyes of the ‘Music Of The Sun’ star who burst onto scene as an innocent sunny seventeen year old later saying in an interview with Diane Sawyer about the incident, “I am strong. This happened to me. I didn’t cause this, I didn’t do it. This happened to me and it could happen to anybody.”
Indeed, Fenty came back bigger and badder than she ever alluded to before and with a vengeance on her fourth LP Rated R, and the world couldn’t help but understand the depth of anger, hatred and shimmering betrayal that some of the LP’s tracks like lead single ‘Russian Roulette’ pointed at.
But nowadays onlookers of the pop star’s music videos, live performances and lyrics have accused the Barbadian of “loose morals” and being reckless in regards to her position as a “role model” which Rihanna speaking to Vogue magazine recently rejected saying, “they want me to be a role model just because of the life I lead…[being a role model] became more of my job than I wanted it to be. But no, I just want to make music. That’s it.”
Back in 2009, Fenty seemed to take this role in hand repeatedly telling young women to leave a relationship like she did with Brown, if a man were to ever put their hands on them saying, “I want to send a message to young women who have been through this sort of violence that there is help out there.”
A disgruntled farmer on the Northern Ireland set of ‘We Found Love’ called the singer “ungodly” for her various states of undress on set; she has been accused of being a member of the illuminati for the openly aggressive sexual content and symbolism of hits like ‘S&M,’ she has been called irresponsible for having another female openly caressing her in the video for hit ‘Te Amo.’ Parents were outraged at the star for simulating sexual domination scenes complete with chains and whips onstage on tour, and a number of her recent promos have depicted scenes of rape and domestic violence for which Fenty was again attacked.
Yet, in the face of all of this Rihanna has remained defiant and protective of her right to express herself naming her sixth album Talk that Talk in response to her nay-sayers and has since moved on from Brown reaching the heights of success; beating Madonna to become the fastest solo act to score twenty Top Ten hits and is well on the way to surpassing the Billboard feats of legends like Whitney Houston and Mariah Carey.
Now the young star has now been advised by doctors to curb her alleged drinking, and partying habits after uncharacteristically cancelling gigs due to falling ill because she’s “running on empty” – is our favourite islander going to take her mentor Jay-Z and doctors’ advice and put her feet up or are we going to witness the eventual demise of a sparky headstrong talent has she grows into maturity?