Bellissimo, davvero bello questo nuovo photoshoot scattato da Rihanna per la rivista australiana Sunday Magazine. Le foto ovviamente sono state scattate durante il suo soggiorno promozionale in Australia, ma solo ora sono state pubblicate… Cliccate sul banner qua sopra per vederle. Cliccate qua invece per vedere un video del backstage, mentre cliccate qua per vedere alcune foto tratte dal dietro le quinte del set fotografico. Le foto in HQ arriveranno presto!
Cliccate su continua a leggere per leggere inoltre l’intervista integrale.
WHAT’S the longest period of time you’ve waited for someone? Twenty minutes? An hour?
I start to get cranky around the five-minute mark, so imagine how grumpy I am after waiting four hours on a Sunday afternoon for the subject of today’s photoshoot to arrive. You know how a watched pot never boils? Well, let me assure you, a watched doorway never brings a Rihanna.
For much of the afternoon, I’ve been steadily receiving text messages letting me know that the singer won’t be long (“definitely within the hour”) until, finally, when the crew are weak with starvation, we’re startled into action by a flurry of voices. Striding at the front of the 10-strong pack is the surprisingly tall star, immaculately groomed in a simple white shift dress and giant sunnies (even though it’s 7pm). She takes the time to greet each of us with, “Hi, I’m Rihanna.”
Considering she’s only in town for a 72-hour promo tour, she has one hell of an entourage. There’s the manager, two assistants (one of whom heads for the stereo to blast the boss lady’s new album, Rated R, kicking off with the chart-topping single Rude Boy), the hair and make-up artists, the wardrobe keeper, the best friend and two drivers. They busy themselves taking over the entire studio space, while Rihanna squeaks with excitement at the designer pieces she’ll be wearing.
On the surface, the US-based singer, who originally hails from sunny Barbados, projects a sexy but tough ghetto-girl image. Yet, in person, she’s sweet, polite and even a little shy as she tries to gauge the situation. But while she admits she loves dressing up and says “the whole thing is fun”, the flashing cameras and hired help must feel a long way from the beach-side idyll she once called home.
“Where I lived in Saint Michael was literally 30m from the beach,” the 22-year-old tells me in a thick West Indian accent. “It was perfect – a paradise – and we took it for granted. Basically, we woke up on a vacation every day.”
After making a splash in her local industry as a cutesy pop singer (“I can’t even watch some of my old videos”), the former beauty pageant queen born Robyn Rihanna Fenty plucked up the courage to leave behind her single mother and two younger brothers – not to mention her father’s crack cocaine habit – and head stateside at age 16.
“I was like, oh my God, I’m really going. I wasn’t looking back.”
There, she auditioned for Jay-Z, head of Def Jam label at the time, and the story goes that he refused to let her leave until she signed a contract. “I signed her in one day,” says the rapper of his first meeting with Rihanna. “It took me two minutes to see she was a star.”
Under the guidance of the new label, her first single, Pon de Replay, charted well, as did SOS from her following record, but it was her fourth album, edgier look and one tune in particular – Umbrella (‘ella ella’) – that set her apart from the rest of the R’n’B pack.
These days, her solo music releases and collaborations are instant hits, and her forward fashion has led to her being touted as a style icon of the new decade. (Although not everyone agrees. Despite her role as a youth and culture ambassador for Barbados, there’s a contingent back in her home country who feels her image is a disgrace to her heritage and are openly hostile on blogs and in the press.)
But all that success was tainted by one muc