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Robyn Rihanna Fenty (born February 20, 1988) is a Barbadian singer, fashion designer and songwriter. Born in Saint Michael, Barbados, her career began upon meeting record producer Evan Rogers in late 2003 through mutual friends; she recorded demo tapes with his guidance. Her tape was sent to several record labels, and she subsequently signed a contract with Def Jam Recordings after auditioning for its then-president, hip-hop producer and rapper Jay Z. Both her debut album, Music of the Sun (2005) and its follow-up A Girl Like Me (2006) peaked in the top ten on the US Billboard 200; the former featured the commercially successful song “Pon de Replay” while the latter produced her first Billboard Hot 100 number-one single, “SOS“.
She rose to widespread prominence and became a household name with the release of her third studio album, Good Girl Gone Bad (2007), and its chart-topping lead single “Umbrella.” The album and its 2008 Reloaded re-release were nominated for nine Grammy Awards, winning Best Rap/Sung Collaboration for “Umbrella”. From 2009 to 2012, following a highly publicized altercation with then-boyfriend, entertainer Chris Brown, she annually released four Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) platinum certified albums: Rated R (2009), Loud (2010), Talk That Talk (2011), and her first Billboard 200 number one album Unapologetic (2012). The same year, she appeared in her first theatrical feature film, Battleship.
Rihanna has sold over 41 million albums and 150 million songs worldwide, making her one of the best-selling artists of all time. Many of her songs rank among the world’s best-selling singles of all time, such as “Umbrella”, “Take a Bow“, “Disturbia“, “Only Girl (In the World)“, “S&M“, “We Found Love“, “Diamonds” and “Stay“. In addition to her solo work, Rihanna has collaborated with other artists and was featured on the worldwide hits “Can’t Remember to Forget You” (with Shakira), “Live Your Life” (with T.I.), “Run This Town” (with Jay-Z and Kanye West), “Love the Way You Lie” and “The Monster” (both with Eminem). She has achieved thirteen number-one singles on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, becoming the youngest and fastest solo artist to accomplish this record. Billboard named her the Digital Songs Artist of the 2000s decade and the top Hot 100 artist of the 2010s decade.
Rihanna is known for frequently reinventing her style and image, most notably since Good Girl Gone Bad. Her work has earned her numerous awards and accolades, including eight Grammy Awards, eight American Music Awards, 23 Billboard Music Awards, and two BRIT Awards. In 2012, Forbes ranked her the fourth most powerful celebrity of the year, with earnings of $53 million between May 2011 and May 2012. The same year, Time named Rihanna one of the 100 Most Influential People in the World. At the American Music Awards of 2013, she received the first ever Icon Award. On June 2, 2014, Rihanna received the Fashion Icon lifetime achievement award from the Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA).
2015: Home and eighth studio album
News of Rihanna’s work on her eighth studio album began in 2014. The first single from the album, “FourFiveSeconds“, featuring Kanye West and Paul McCartney, was released on January 24, 2015. West revealed that he is the executive producer for Rihanna’s eighth studio album during the 57th Annual Grammy Awards red carpet. She also released a concept album based around the 3D animated film Home, which she starred in, alongside Jim Parsons, Steve Martin and Jennifer Lopez. “Towards the Sun” was released as the first single from the Home soundtrack on February 24. On March 5, Rihanna released a snippet of a track called “Higher”, but didn’t confirm its origin.
She later released the second single from her eighth studio album “Bitch Better Have My Money“, performing it for the first time at the 2nd iHeartRadio Music Awards on March 29, 2015. Another song entitled “American Oxygen” debuted on Tidal on April 5, 2015. The song will reportedly be featured on her upcoming album. Rihanna also posted an interlude entitled “James Joint” in its entirety from the upcoming album on her website on April 21, 2015, as a “celebration of 420“. While modeling in a Dior Secret Garden advertisement, Rihanna teased a 1-minute clip of a song called “Only If For A Night” that is allegedly on her upcoming studio album.
On July 1, 2015 the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) announced that Rihanna had surpassed more than 100 million Gold & Platinum song certifications. In doing so Rihanna has the most Digital Single Awards and is the first and only artist to surpass RIAA’s 100 million cumulative singles award threshold. On August 13, 2015, it was announced that Rihanna will be joining the ninth season of The Voice as the main advisor in September 2015.
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