Rihanna on Chris Brown collaboration: It 'made sense'
A few short weeks ago, Rihanna and Chris Brown sent the blogosphere into overdrive after they casually released not one, but two joint remixes, drawing the ire and confusion of fans and critics. Rihanna provided vocals on a remix of Brown's thumping dance single “Turn Up the Music” and he in turn lent his voice to her sexually aggressive “Birthday Cake.” The collaborations added fuel to rampant speculation that the two had reconciled.
Now Rihanna is defending the decision to work with her ex –- the guy currently serving five years' probation for assaulting her three years ago.
The pop diva called into Ryan Seacrest’s morning show on Thursday to talk about a few fluffier subjects, including her upcoming big-screen debut, fashion goals and hair color.
Even Seacrest, the king of idle chitchat, couldn’t resist getting to the meatier subject at hand, so he asked her to explain the collaboration with Brown: “The first song that came about was ‘Birthday Cake,'" Rihanna said. "I mean, we ended up recording them at the same time and executing them together. But I reached out to him about doing ‘Birthday Cake’ because that’s the only person that, really, it made sense to do the record.”
“Just as a musician, despite everything else, that was going to be the person. You know I thought about rappers, and I’ve done that so many times, and the hottest R&B artist out right now is Chris Brown,” she continued. “So I wanted him on the track, and then in turn he was like, ‘Why don’t you do the remix to my track?’ and it was a trade-off. We did two records. One for my fans, one for his fans, and that way our fans can come together. There shouldn’t be a divide. You know? It’s music, and it’s innocent.”
Wait, that's it?
She wasn't expected to divulge all (confirming or negating rumors that they are secretly together), but shrugging it off as “innocent” and something that “made sense” because “the hottest R&B artist out right now is Chris Brown” was evasive at best, cynical and promo-driven at worst.
Rihanna appears to be at a place where she doesn’t give a hoot -– she’s said so on Twitter with more colorful language. But she now appears downright flippant, playing with serious subject matter coyly rather than addressing it head-on.
Ironic considering her album is called “Talk That Talk.” Maybe she should give it a try.
Listen to the full interview below:
-- Gerrick D. Kennedy
Photo: Rihanna performing at Staples Center last summer. Credit: Gina Ferazzi / Los Angeles Times