There are endless debates about Rihanna‘s vocal skills and lack thereof, but her ability to hit this note or that is really irrelevant because it’s not why her fan base loves her. Rihanna has always been that singer, much like a blues or punk vocalist, whose gift is to deliver emotion, to sell the truth of the song’s story.
On the Billboard Music Awards last night, her performance of “Love on the Brain” was one of her best live performances in a long while, one in which you could hear/see/feel the expression of pain and frustration that is so often a product of difficult relationship. When at 2:26, she pulls backs from the mic and shakes her head, she utterly becomes the face of that one relationship that plagues for life. It only added to the positives that Rihanna is in the midst of a global tour and thus came to her Billboard performance well rehearsed and flowing with confidence.
For her look, she was styled by Mel Ottenberg and wore a vintage Thierry Mugler suit with Rosa slingbacks. Her sunglasses, which she removed midway for added drama, were by Selina Optique. Accessories were provided by Jacob & Co.
Makeup: Mylah Morales
Nails: Kimmie Kyes