Rihanna Photos: Hot Hollywood Celebrity Photo Gallery of the Day
HollywoodNews.com: Our selected celebrity to be included in our “Hot Hollywood Celebrity Photo Gallery of the Day” is Rihanna.
Robyn Rihanna Fenty (born February 20, 1988), better known as simply Rihanna (pronounced /riˈɑːnə/ ree-yah-na or /riˈænə/ ree-an-ə), is an R&B recording artist. Born in Saint Michael, Barbados, Rihanna moved to the United States at the age of 16 to pursue a recording career under the guidance of record producer Evan Rogers. She subsequently signed a contract with Def Jam Recordings after auditioning for then-label head Jay-Z.
In 2005, Rihanna released her debut studio album, Music of the Sun, which peaked in the top ten of the Billboard 200 chart and features the Billboard Hot 100 hit single “Pon de Replay.” Less than a year later, she released her second studio album, A Girl Like Me (2006), which peaked within the top five of the Billboard albums chart, and produced her first US number one single, “SOS”, as well as the top 10 singles “Unfaithful” and “Break It Off”. Rihanna’s third studio album, Good Girl Gone Bad (2007), which peaked at number two on the Billboard 200, featured five top ten hits including three US number one hit singles—”Umbrella”, “Take a Bow” and “Disturbia”—and the worldwide hit “Don’t Stop the Music”. The album was nominated for nine Grammy Awards, winning Best Rap/Sung Collaboration for “Umbrella,” which features Jay-Z. Her fourth studio album Rated R, released in November 2009, produced the hit single “Rude Boy”, which achieved the number-one spot on the Billboard Hot 100. Loud (2010), her fifth studio album, spawned the number-one hits “Only Girl (In the World)”, “What’s My Name?” and “S&M”.
Rihanna has sold more than 20 million albums and 60 million singles making her one of the best selling artists of all time. She has achieved ten number-one singles on the Billboard Hot 100 since first appearing on the chart on June 11, 2005, which is the most by any artist during that time span. As of March 18, 2011, Rihanna has sold approximately 6 million album units and over 33,7 million digital singles in the US. She has sold over 10 million records in the UK. Billboard named Rihanna the Digital Songs Artist of the 2000s decade. She has received several accolades, including the 2007 World Music Awards for World’s Best-Selling Pop Female Artist and Female Entertainer of the Year, and the 2011 Brit Award for Best International Female Solo Artist. She has also amassed a total of four Grammy Awards, four American Music Awards, and eighteen Billboard Music Awards.
1988–04: Early life and career beginnings
Rihanna was born in Saint Michael, Barbados on February 20, 1988, to Monica, an accountant, and Ronald Fenty, a warehouse supervisor. Her mother, a native of Guyana, is Afro-Guyanese, and her father is of Barbadian and Irish descent. The eldest of three siblings, she has two younger brothers, Rorrey and Rajad Fenty. She began singing at around the age of seven. Her childhood was deeply affected by her father’s addiction to crack cocaine and her parents’ rocky marriage, which ended when she was fourteen years old. Rihanna attended Charles F. Broome Memorial School, a primary school in Barbados, and then the Combermere School, where she formed a musical trio with two of her classmates at the age of fifteen. In 2004 she won the Miss Combermere Beauty Pageant. She was an army cadet in a sub-military programme that trained with the military of Barbados and Shontelle was her drill sergeant.
In 2003, friends introduced Rihanna and her two bandmates to record producer Evan Rogers, who was vacationing in Barbados with his wife. The group auditioned for Rogers, who said that “the minute Rihanna walked into the room, it was like the other two girls didn’t exist.” While auditioning for Rogers, Rihanna sang Destiny’s Child’s cover of “Emotion”. Over the next year, Rihanna and her mom shuttled back and forth to Rogers’ home in Stamford, Connecticut. Then, shortly after turning 16, she relocated in the United States and moved in with Rogers and his wife. Carl Sturken helped her record a four-song demo, which included the ballad “Last Time”, a cover of Whitney Houston’s hit “For the Love of You”, and what would become her first hit, “Pon de Replay”, to send to various recording companies. It took a year to record the demos, because Rihanna was going to school and would only record during summer and Christmas school breaks. Her demo made its way to Def Jam, which invited her to audition for the label’s then-president, Jay-Z, who quickly signed her.
2005–06: Music of the Sun and A Girl Like Me
After signing with Def Jam, she spent the next three months recording and completing her debut album. The album featured production from Evan Rogers, Carl Sturken, Stargate and Poke & Tone. She first collaborated with rapper Memphis Bleek on his fourth studio album 534 before her debut. She released her debut single, “Pon de Replay”, on August 22, 2005, which peaked at number two on the Billboard Hot 100 and the UK Singles Chart. It became a global hit where it peaked within the top ten across fifteen countries. Her debut album, Music of the Sun, was released in August 2005 in the United States. The album reached number ten on the Billboard 200, selling 69,000 copies in its first week. The album sold over two million copies worldwide and received a Gold certification by the Recording Industry Association of America, denoting shipments to US retailers of over 500,000 units.
Her music was marketed within the reggae genres because of her Caribbean descent. The album received mixed reviews by music critics. Rolling Stone magazine rated it 2.5 out of 5 stars and described as lacking the replay value, ingenuity and rhythm of the single with “generic vocal hiccups and frills” of US R&B inflecting upon her “Caribbean charm”. Sal Cinquemani of Slant Magazine described the album as a “glut of teen R&B chanteuses ” and described her lead single “Pon de Replay” as “a dancehall-pop mixture that owes plenty of its sweat and shimmy to Beyoncé’s “Baby Boy”. A reviewer for Entertainment Weekly commented that the “dancehall/R&B debut is filled with chintzy production and maudlin arrangements that block out the Music of the Sun.” The albums second single, “If It’s Lovin’ that You Want” was less successful than “Pon de Replay”, having managed a peak position of number thirty-six in the US, and number eleven on the UK Singles Chart. In Australia, Ireland and New Zealand the single proved to be well-received reaching the top ten in those countries.
A month after the release of her debut album, she began working on her second studio album. The album contained production from record producers Evan Rogers and Carl Sturken who produced most of her debut album, Stargate, J. R. Rotem and label-mate singer-songwriter Ne-Yo. While recording the album, Rihanna served as an opening act for Gwen Stefani to promote her debut album. The lead single, “SOS”, peaked at number one on the Billboard Hot 100, becoming her first number-one in the United States. A Girl Like Me was released in April 2006, less than eight months after her debut. The album reached number five on the Billboard 200 selling 115,000 copies in its first week and has been certified platinum by the RIAA, having shipped over one million units. Internationally, the album peaked at number one on the Top Canadian Albums, five on the UK Albums Chart and number five on the Irish Album Chart. The critical response to the album was mixed; Rolling Stone magazine commented “Like her filler-packed debut album, this similar but superior follow-up doesn’t deliver anything else as ingenious as its lead single.” Critics described the album as a record that almost identically alternates between the sunny dancehall/dub-pop, hip-hop-infused club bangers and gushy, adult-oriented ballads.
The second single, “Unfaithful”, became a major worldwide hit, reaching the top ten in dozen countries around the world, including the United States where it reached number six on the Billboard Hot 100, as well as topping the charts in Canada, France and Switzerland. The albums third single, “We Ride” failed to reprise the success of the lead single but the fourth single, “Break It Off” featuring Sean Paul, jumped from number fifty-two to number ten eventually peaking at number nine. After the release of the album, Rihanna embarked on her first headlining tour, the Rihanna: Live in Concert Tour. She then embarked on the Rock The Block Tour and then toured with Pussycat Dolls from November 2006 to February 2007 in the United Kingdom. Rihanna also made her acting debut in a cameo role in the straight-to-DVD film Bring It On: All or Nothing, which was released on August 8, 2006.
2007–08: Good Girl Gone Bad
Rihanna performing at the Brisbane Entertainment Centre
With her third studio album, Good Girl Gone Bad (2007), Rihanna wanted to head in a new direction with the help of music producers Timbaland, will.i.am and Sean Garrett, and re-imagine her album compositions with fresh, uptempo dance tracks. She adopted a more rebellious image while recording the album, eventually dying her hair black and cutting it short. Rihanna commented, “I want to keep people dancing but still be soulful at the same time […] You feel different every album, and [at] this stage I feel like I want to do a lot of uptempo [songs].” The album topped the charts in countries like the United Kingdom, Canada, Japan, Brazil, Russia and Ireland, and it peaked at number two in the United States and Australia. Unlike previous work, the album featured a more dance-pop sound instead of the dancehall, reggae and ballad styles. The album received positive reviews by critics, becoming her most critically acclaimed album at that time compared to her previous efforts.
The album yielded eight hit singles – all singles reaching the top twenty on the Billboard Hot 100 – including the worldwide number-one hit “Umbrella,” featuring Jay-Z. In addition to reaching number one in various countries, “Umbrella” was the number-one single in the United Kingdom for ten consecutive weeks, making it the longest-running number-one single since Wet Wet Wet’s single “Love Is All Around” spent fifteen weeks at the top in 1994. The song is listed number three on the 100 Best Songs of 2007 published by Rolling Stone magazine. Her other singles, “Shut Up and Drive”, “Don’t Stop The Music” and “Hate That I Love You” were able to mirror the success of “Umbrella,” with “Don’t Stop the Music” reaching number three on the Billboard Hot 100 while peaking at number one in various countries. With the re-issue of her third album, titled Good Girl Gone Bad: Reloaded, which was released in June 2008. Rihanna released the first singles from the re-release “Take a Bow” – which became a worldwide number-one hit – the duet with Maroon 5, “If I Never See Your Face Again,” and the other US number-one hit “Disturbia.” “Disturbia” reached to number four before reaching number one, as her previous single, “Take a Bow”, was at number two, making Rihanna the seventh female singer to have two songs in the top five. Meanwhile, Rihanna was featured on rapper T.I.’s “Live Your Life,” which peaked at number-one on the Billboard Hot 100, giving Rihanna her fifth number-one single on the Hot 100 thus far (“SOS,” “Umbrella,” “Take a Bow” and “Disturbia,” as well as T.I.’s “Live Your Life”). This made Rihanna one of the two female solo artists with the most number-one singles of the decade, with the other being Beyoncé Knowles. It has shipped over two million units in the United States, receiving a two-times-platinum certification from the RIAA; this gave Rihanna her best-selling album to date.
Rihanna was nominated in four categories at the 2007 MTV Video Music Awards, winning Monster Single of the Year and Video of the Year. At the 2008 Grammy Awards, Rihanna earned her first Grammy Award for Best Rap/Sung Collaboration, in addition to receiving five other nominations, including Record of the Year, Best Dance Recording, Best R&B Performance by a Duo or Group and Best R&B Song. In support of the album, she kicked off her second headlining tour The Good Girl Gone Bad Tour on September 12, 2007, with several shows across the United States, Canada and Europe and then embarked on the Glow in the Dark Tour with Kanye West, Lupe Fiasco, and N.E.R.D on April 16, 2008. Rihanna won Favorite Pop/Rock Female Artist and Favorite Soul/R&B Female Artist at the 2008 American Music Awards. In December 2008, Margeaux Watson of Entertainment Weekly wrote an article entitled “Rihanna: Diva of the year” which he referred to her breakout success of 2008.
2009–10: Domestic violence case, Rated R
Rihanna on the AMA red carpet in 2009
On February 8, 2009, Rihanna’s scheduled performance at the 2009 Grammy Awards was cancelled. Reports later surfaced regarding an alleged altercation with then-boyfriend, singer Chris Brown, who was arrested on suspicion of making criminal threats. On March 5, 2009, Brown was charged with assault and making criminal threats. Due to a leaked photograph from the Los Angeles Police Department obtained by TMZ.com—which revealed Rihanna had sustained visible injuries—an organization known as STOParazzi has proposed a law called “Rihanna’s Law,” which, if enacted, would “deter employees of law enforcement agencies from releasing photos or information that exploits crime victims.” Gil Kaufman of VH1 reported “[t]he nonstop coverage of the Rihanna/Brown case has brought up a number of issues regarding the privacy of alleged victims of domestic violence, including the decision by almost all major news outlets to divulge the identity of the victim—which is not typically done in domestic-violence cases” and the controversial distribution of the leaked photograph. Rihanna was subpoenaed to testify during a preliminary hearing in L.A. on June 22, 2009. “The DA told me Rihanna will be subpoenaed. I will accept on her behalf,” Rihanna’s attorney, Donald Etra told Us Weekly. On June 22, 2009, Brown pled guilty to the felony assault. In exchange for his plea Brown received five years probation and was ordered to stay fifty yards away from Rihanna, unless at public events, which then will be reduced to ten yards.
Rihanna made an appearance as the central character in Kanye West’s music video “Paranoid”. She also collaborated with Jay-Z and West on “Run This Town” which peaked at number two on Billboard Hot 100 as well as reaching the top ten in ten other countries. The song won the Grammy Award for Best Rap Song and Best Rap/Sung Collaboration, bringing her total to three Grammys. Her fourth studio album, Rated R, was released in November 2009. Rolling Stone was favorable of the album commenting that “Rihanna has transformed her sound and made one of the best pop records of the year”. The album debuted at number four on the Billboard 200 and has been certified platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) for shipment of one million copies. Its first three singles: “Russian Roulette”, “Hard” and “Rude Boy” peaked within the top ten on the Billboard Hot 100 with “Rude Boy” reaching number-one. The song also topped the charts in Australia, while reaching number two in the United Kingdom, the Republic of Ireland, New Zealand and Switzerland. In January 2010, Rihanna won two Barbados Music Awards for “Song of the Decade” with “Umbrella” and “Entertainer of the Decade”. She was named “International Female Artist of the Year” at the 2010 NRJ Music Awards. Two other singles were released from Rated R, which included “Rockstar 101” and the final single from the album, “Te Amo”. To further promote the album, she embarked on her worldwide tour, the Last Girl on Earth Tour.
2010-11 : Loud
Rihanna on her Loud Tour
During the summer, Rihanna collaborated with rapper Eminem on “Love the Way You Lie”, which reached number one on the Billboard Hot 100, as well as other countries including Australia, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, Norway and Sweden. The song became Rihanna’s seventh number one hit single on the Hot 100 of her career, making her the female artist with the fifth-most number ones in the chart’s history. In August 2010, a wax figure of Rihanna was unveiled in Madame Tussauds in Washington D.C. Rihanna was asked by Kanye West in or around August 2010 to contribute to “All of the Lights”, the fifth track from West’s fifth studio album, My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy. In an interview with MTV News, Rihanna stated that she “loved” the song, which also features several other artists, including but not limited to Alicia Keys, John Legend, Fergie and Elton John. On October 19, 2010, Rihanna released a self-titled book, and is currently working on Peter Berg’s film, Battleship, scheduled for release in 2012. On October 20, 2010, Rihanna announced that she was parting ways with manager Marc Jordan and will henceforth be managed by Jay-Z’s Roc Nation Management. She is also starting her own company, Rihanna Entertainment, in which she will “merge all of her businesses including music, film, fragrance, fashion and book ventures”.
Rihanna released her fifth studio album, Loud, on November 16, 2010. The album debuted at number three on the Billboard 200, selling 207,000 copies in its first week, becoming the fifth top-ten album of Rihanna’s career in the US, with her best week of sales. Its lead single, “Only Girl (In the World)”, was digitally released in the United States in September 2010. After many weeks, the song reached number one on the Billboard Hot 100. “Only Girl (In the World)” also reached number one in more than ten countries including Australia, Canada, and the UK. Later the song won a Grammy Award for Best Dance Recording at the 53rd Grammy Awards. The album’s second single, “What’s My Name?”, featuring rapper Drake, also reached number one in the United States and on the official UK singles chart, giving Rihanna the record of being the first female solo artist to have five number one singles in the United Kingdom in consecutive years. Although it was the second single from Loud, it reached the top spot before the first single, “Only Girl (In the World)” making it the first time in Hot 100 history that an album’s debut single reached number one after the second single.
In April 2011, Rihanna earned another milestone when “S&M”, her third international single from Loud, featuring Britney Spears reached number one on the Billboard Hot 100, becoming her tenth number one hit on the chart. By doing so she became the youngest artist in the chart’s 52-year history to achieve ten number-one singles. The album’s fifth US single was “Man Down” and it has peaked at forty on US Billboard Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs Chart. In May 2011, “California King Bed” was released as the fourth international single from the album. It has peaked at number eight on the UK Singles Chart and eighty on Billboard Hot 100.
2011–present: Loud Tour and re-release
Rihanna will embark on her fourth concert tour, the Loud Tour, later this year, in support of the album. In May 2011, Kevin Rudolf The Cash Money singer-producer reveals that Rihanna has asked him to pen songs for her sixth album. He told Rap-Up “I’m writing some stuff for Rihanna right now, I hear she’s back at it.” On June 17, 2011, Ryan Seacrest spoke with her team and made the announcement on KIIS FM radio show. “We can confirm that Rihanna is currently working on material and will release a brand new album this fall”. Rihanna later clarified Seacrest’s comments on her Twitter page that she was recording additional songs to add to a re-release of Loud.
Photos by PR Photos
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