Wednesday, February 20, 2008
BRIt AWARDS 2008 with MasterCard EXCLUSIVE: RIHANNA'S YEARS OF HELL
Superstar Rihanna's dad told last night of his shame after she caught him smoking crack cocaine when she was just nine years old.
Ronald Fenty revealed how the singer - who hopes to win best international female artist at Wednesday's glitzy Brits awards do in London - watched him indulge his lethal habit as she peered through a gap in the kitchen door.
Ronald revealed: "I turned and looked Rihanna in the eye and instantly came back down from the high I was on. I saw her run for her mother, ask her something and then they both started to cry. I had no idea she had been watching.
"It was the lowest point - life just stopped and I realised what a fool I had been."
The moment tore apart Ronald and Rihanna's lives. He was thrown out of the family home in Barbados and stopped from seeing his daughter. But Ronald, 54, managed to kick the drugs and now plays a full part in her life - even joining the 19-year-old sensation on tour. He has also done his best to warn her off drugs - though he's sure she wouldn't touch them anyway.
"I spent 25 years doing drugs so I know the devastation they cause," he said. "Last year I sat her down and said, 'Rihanna don't make the mistakes I did. Don't do drugs'.
"You see so many young people find fame then lose their heads. I begged her not to do a Britney Spears or Lindsay Lohan. She looked me in the eyes and said, 'Dad don't be stupid'. She won't go down the path I went down. She's too smart."
The worlds of Rihanna, who has a million-pound pad in Los Angeles, and Ronald, who lives in his aunt's modest home, could hardly be more different.
When the Sunday Mirror tracked down the father-of-five in Bridgetown, Barbados, he was hawking tacky toys, perfume and household items from the boot of a battered Nissan car.
But he's used to a life on the streets. Growing up, Ronald was scoring crack cocaine and cannabis at only 14. He took drugs through high school, where he met Rihanna's mother Monica.
Despite a relationship littered with rows - mainly over his drug-taking - the pair married in 1985. But after Rihanna, their first child, was born in 1988 Ronald would disappear on cocaine binges for days on end. Monica was often left alone to cope with Rihanna and younger brothers Rorrey and Rajad.
Ronald said: "I was out of control. I would let my wife and my children down time and time again. I was not a good dad or husband."
Yet amid the chaos Rihanna, nicknamed Pinky because she loved pink clothes, was blossoming into a singer. Aged three she would stand in front of the mirror, hairbrush in hand, singing along to Whitney Houston's Saving All My Love For You.
At seven she was displaying the incredible voice which today sells millions of records and could earn her the best female artist award at the Brits. Ronald remembers her singing A Whole New World from Disney's Aladdin. "I was in the lounge and heard this angelic singing from the balcony," he said. "I looked out and it was Rihanna. My heart jumped. I knew then she was special."
But two years on Rihanna saw her father smoking crack. Ronald said: "It was the turning point. Monica chucked me out and we never patched things up. I knew I could carrying on taking drugs and die or stop and see my children grow up. I still thank God every day I chose to stop - I live for my children now."
And, despite his daughter's millions, he never asks for a penny and insists he's happy in his work, which earns him around £250 for a seven-day week. He said: "The only thing I want is to be a part of her life. I have had her forgiveness, which you can't put a price on, and I would never dream of asking her for a dollar."
Rihanna, who won a Grammy in Los Angeles last week for Umbrella, will be hoping for more of the same at the Brits, where she will perform the smash hit with The Klaxons.
And Ronald will be watching with pride on satellite TV. "I would have loved to have gone to London but, unless Rihanna calls and says, 'Hey dad, jump on a plane', then I will be watching on TV with a bottle of beer," he said.
Want more evidence of a potentially budding romance between Rihanna and Chris Brown?
I heard the two were doing a little swagging together at the Grammys. A fellow swagger told me they hit the official awards gifting suite to find some new sunglasses.
The two music superstars arrived together but were careful about not leaving any photographic evidence behind. They declined having their pictures taken.
Even so, Rihanna walked away with a fierce pair of Balenciaga shades while her 18-year-old maybe-boyfriend took home two pairs of oversize Marc Jacobs glasses in red and blue.
My spy also informed me that at one point “Chris was telling her they needed to go, and in seconds they were gone.”
For more on this not-so-undercover couple, click over to my gossiping cohort Hollywood Party Girl to get all the deets on Rihanna’s early birthday party (she turns 20 next Wednesday) on Tuesday night at Hollywood hot spot Les Deux.
Ever wonder why Hollywood stars change their hair color and make drastic cuts? Sexy Rihanna tops the "cut and color" list from In Touch Weekly as the Hollywood star that has made the most of a drastic switch to create a wild buzz. The sexy starlet is on a roll, and from brunette to blond and curly to straight, she tops the list of stars that love switching their styles.
Rihanna Tops "Sexy Cut" List (Image: Wenn)
When she first appeared on the scene, Rihanna’s long, flowy and wavy hair fit right in with her girl-next-door image. But when the 20-year-old Barbados native wanted to unleash her edgier side, she ignored her record label’s wishes and headed to the salon for a big change.
"My image was boring — very innocent and girlie,” she explains. “I was tired of being pushed around, so I cut my hair. I didn’t ask anybody, I just did it. I have a lot of attitude now and I’m not afraid to let it out!” Following the debut of her now infamous jet-black bob in March, the singer recently stepped out with an even shorter ’do.
“She’s always looking for a change,” her stylist, Ursula Stephen, tells In Touch. “We looked at some pictures for inspiration and she was just like, ‘Okay let’s do it! Let’s cut it!’” As for Rihanna’s ever-evolving style, Ursula says: “She’s coming into her own. She’s becoming her own woman.”
Friends threw Rihanna a surprise birthday party last night, but it seems the singer's been keeping a secret of her own: her romance with R&B crooner Chris Brown. The Grammy-winning girl showed up at the bash—held in a private room at Les Deux—hand in hand with her man. It's a hookup made in hip-hop heaven!
"Rihanna looked so happy and excited to be there," says one partygoer. When the birthday babe, in a lacy, cream-colored tube top and a pencil skirt, hit the ladies' room, Chris busted out some of his signature moves. The talented dude even had a dance-off with another guest.
At 1:45 a.m., the deejay played Rihanna's megahit "Umbrella" in her honor. Now that we know she's spending QT with Chris, is it too soon to ask when another duet is coming? Fingers crossed![Source]
Rihanna celebrated her 20th birthday at Les Deux in Hollywood, with Kanye West, actor Wilmer Valderrama and her maybe-boyfriend Chris Brown. The party included a cupcake fight and a special a capella version of "Happy Birthday" sung by Brown.
Rihanna and Brown are currently denying a relationship, but a party guest says the two were cuddling and acting "very cozy all night." Below is a photo of the two from a post-Grammy party.
Monday, February 11, 2008
You know the difference between us and celebrities? They go to the gym a lot more.
In fact, they spend so much time in the gym, they don't even bother changing into normal outfits when they pop out to the supermarket. Or "grocery store", as our American cousins would call it.
And here's a case in point: Rihanna, snapped this weekend going to a grocery store and yet clearly dressed for the gym.
Although maybe she's just read all that stuff in magazines that tell us that you can work off 300 calories an hour doing the shopping, and so on? And got dressed accordingly. Now if only we'd caught her doing squat thrusts down Aisle Five....