Rihanna is getting real about motherhood and her decision to perform at the Super Bowl after a years-long hiatus!
On Sunday, fans watched as the 34-year-old singer delivered a VERY revealing halftime show, showing she was pregnant with her & A$AP Rocky’s second child. It marked the first time in nearly seven years she performed, and it also came after she turned down the halftime show in 2018 to stand in solidarity with Colin Kaepernick. As you may recall, the athlete took a knee during The Star-Spangled Banner to protest against racial injustice and police brutality. So Rihanna refused to do the halftime show to support Colin, explaining to Vogue in 2019:
“I just couldn’t be a sellout. There’s things within that organization that I do not agree with at all, and I was not about to go and be of service to them in any way.”
So why the change of heart now? In a new interview with Vogue UK published on Wednesday, Rihanna explained that she knew the impact of having “representation” on as big of a stage as the Super Bowl was important:
“There’s still a lot of mending to be done in my eyes, but it’s powerful to break those doors, and have representation at such a high, high level and a consistent level.”
She also noted that her performance was the second that was “representing the Urban community globally” after Dr. Dre, Snoop Dogg, Mary J. Blige, Kendrick Lamar, and Eminem showed out in 2022:
“It is powerful. It sends a really strong message.”
But there was another big factor in her decision to accept the offer. She was now “raising a young Black man,” saying:
“Of course, raising a young Black man is one of the scariest responsibilities in life. You’re like, ‘What am I leaving my kids to? This is the planet they’re gonna be living on?’ All of those things really start to hit differently.”
Becoming a momma, Rihanna also realized she was able to “do anything” even after being a few months postpartum:
“It’s this knowing that you can do anything, even things that seem the craziest, like, ‘I’m going to say yes to the Super Bowl in the middle of postpartum?’ What the heck am I thinking? But you’re geeked on a challenge like that because you know what your body just did. You feel this sense of ‘Nothing is impossible.’”
However, there was one little detail she did not know at the time. The Fenty Beauty founder had no idea she had a baby on board when she agreed to headline the Super Bowl! She told the publication:
“It was almost like an out-of-body experience. I have not been on stage in seven years. Seven years! From zero to Super Bowl? That’s mental.”
Nevertheless, nothing was going to stop Rihanna from putting on a show! Before the Super Bowl, she explained that she wanted “to have fun” on stage, especially since she hasn’t performed like this in years:
“I haven’t done this in a minute and I’m doing this for the people that love my music, the people that have supported me and gotten me to this place in my career. And who miss me as a musician in particular. It’s me really just getting back onstage – a crazy stage to be back on – but I’m really doing this for my fans.”
It’s safe to say, many of her fans were thrilled to see RiRi back on stage again!
While Rihanna has ventured back into performing again, what does this mean about her long-awaited album? She shared that she wants to release one “this year!” Rihanna revealed:
“Like, honestly, it’d be ridiculous if it’s not this year. But I just want to have fun. I just want to make music and make videos. And I need the right background music with the visuals. I can’t just go shoot a video to me talking.”
The Umbrella artist explained she struggled to release new music after Anti because “it really is my most brilliant album” and “there’s this pressure that I put on myself,” noting “that if it’s not better than that then it is not even worth it.” However, Rihanna realized that “if I keep waiting until this feels right and perfect and better, maybe it’s going to keep taking forever and maybe it’ll never come out and no, I’m not down to that.”
We’re keeping our fingers crossed for another album soon!
Elsewhere in the interview, she opened up about how motherhood has been for her so far, expressing:
“Oh, my God, it’s legendary. It’s everything. You really don’t remember life before, that’s the craziest thing ever. You literally try to remember it – and there are photos of my life before – but the feeling, the desires, the things that you enjoy, everything, you just don’t identify with it because you don’t even allow yourself mentally to get that far, because… Because it doesn’t matter.”
However, it (understandably) hasn’t been smooth sailing all the time. Like many celebrity parents, the Savage X Fenty creator has dealt with the paparazzi not respecting her wishes and taking pictures of her baby boy when she and A$AP hadn’t even shown him to the world yet. Rihanna recalled the moment she was shooting the cover for Vogue UK with her son and noticed the paps snapping photos of them:
“It’s the thing you never want to happen. We get to decide as parents when and how we do that. End of story. Throw me to the wolves. Do what you want with me. But he doesn’t have a say in any of this. We’ve been protecting him thus far and you don’t have any consent to be posting photos or selling photos of my child, a minor. Get the hell out of here with that.”
The momma recall going “straight into protective mode” at the time, noting:
“Like there wasn’t even time for rage. [Rocky and me] drove up to the trailer area and we sat in the car chatting and working out how we move forward. As parents it just feels so icky, like a violation. As we were speaking, we knew they were making calls and deals.”
She ultimately decided to take matters into her own hands and shared the first look of her son on TikTok. You can ch-ch-check out her cover image (below):
Reactions to the interview, Perezcious readers? Let us know in the comments below! You can also ch-ch-check out the entire conversation with Vogue UK HERE.