Rihanna speaks out on Chris Brown
Rihanna says the controversy about her recent collaborations with her ex-boyfriend Chris Brown, the R&B singer who pleaded guilty to assaulting her in 2009, is overblown.
"It's music," she told Ryan Seacrest Thursday on his nationally syndicated radio show. "And it's innocent."
Rihanna and Brown shocked fans, as well as outsiders, when they released two collaborations last month. Rihanna told Seacrest she reached out to Brown to appear on the remix of her song "Birthday Cake" because he was "the only person that really made sense to do the record, just as a musician, despite everything else." She said she considered working with rappers, but decided against it.
"The hottest R&B artist out right now is Chris Brown, so I wanted him on the track," she said, "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?"
The reaction to the songs has been mixed. Even The-Dream, who co-wrote and produced "Birthday Cake," had his doubts. "The same questions that went through my mind . . . had to have gone through hers," The-Dream told MTV's "RapFix Live." "When she raised the question to me, I know she's not crazy. So my thought was, 'You've been thinking about this, you've already thought it out, so evidently you know what reaction you gonna get.' "
Despite the questions, Rihanna's "Birthday Cake" remix has climbed to No. 17 on Billboard's R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart, while Brown's "Turn Up the Music" remix debuted last week at No. 94 on the same chart.