It’s been over two years since Rihanna graced us with their eighth album, the acclaimed ANTI. There hasn’t been much reported progress on the follow-up — probably due to her other non-musical endeavors like her Savage x Fenty lingerie line, which launches next week — but the R&B singer does at least know the direction said full-length will take: “She plans to make a reggae album.”
The interesting tidbit was revealed in a new profile by Vogue, in which she talks about her various current projects, including her acting role in Ocean’s 8. Vogue speculates producer Supa Dups to be a big influence on her new music; the Jamaica-born artist has worked with Beenie Man and Mary J. Blige, as well as helped co-produce a few of Rihanna’s past releases. In the profile, RiRi herself mentions Bob Marley as her favorite reggae musician of all time (FYI: she has an entire shrine dedicated to him).
For anyone that’s stuck with Rihanna beyond a few singles, news that she’s going reggae should come as no shocker. Not only was her career jump-started by a dancehall single (2005’s “Pon de Replay”), but she hasn’t stopped flirting with the genre ever since (Unapologetic’s “No Love Allowed”, her and Drake’s 2016 smash “Work”).
In other Rihanna news, the “Love on the Brain” singer and longtime collaborator Drake are apparently not on the best terms at the moment. “Rihanna winces slightly at the mention of the rapper’s name before her eyes glaze over with cool indifference,” Vogue writes, as the topic of Drizzy and the 2016 MTV VMAs comes up. If you’ll recall, Drake presented her with the prestigious MTV Video Vanguard Award, but did so in a very over-the-top manner by buying her a congratulatory billboard and professing his love onstage.
“Waiting through that speech was probably the most uncomfortable part,” she tells Vogue. “I don’t like too many compliments; I don’t like to be put on blast.” While they were rumors of a romantic relationship for some time, especially around the “Work” days, that’s all a thing of the past now. “We don’t have a friendship now, but we’re not enemies either,” she adds. “It is what it is.” I guess we’ll have to wait until June to see if Drake has any odes to Rihanna on his new album, Scorpion.