Rihanna – What’s My Name? ft. Drake

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Posted November 24, 2010 by J Matthew Cobb in Reviews 1.0

On new single, Rihanna doesn’t have amnesia. She’s testing a new lover. In the video, Drake is her boy-toy and she’s apologetically happy about it.

Critics seemed to adore the naughty “Rated R” reincarnation of Rihanna. They found the character a little more interesting, spicy and a bit adventurous than the Good Girl persona of her first album. Plus it ushered in a new chapter in Rihanna’s story after that media-frenzy meltdown that encircled her high-profiled relationship with R&B singer Chris Brown. “What’s My Name?” is a far cry from the risque’ “Rude Boy,” but it dabbles with flirty teases and a healthy dose of sex appeal. In the music video, Drake is her new lover. After a confrontation in a neighborhood Quik-e-mart, the two exchanges glances, drops a quart of milk during their public display of affection (possibly an orgasmic metaphor) and – for the most part – showcases innocent “baby love” coupling. Not sure if Drake had a powerful effect on our Barbadian princess, but it’s the happiest Rihanna has ever been in a video. She twirls in circles, plays with her red hair and struts the streets with a newfound giddiness.

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For the song, Rihanna grabs a sweet dose of Island phrasing (“o-na-na, what’s my name”) and intersects it into the proto beats of “Rude Boy.” In light of the succession of Ri Ri’s previous hit singles, “What’s My Name?” isn’t hard R&B or synth-pop dance music, but it’s a pop hit nevertheless. Although the chorus is extremely repetitive and short of language, it succeeds in its rehearsing due to its melodic simplicity and – who can deny – the Stargate-designed hook.

J MATTHEW COBB

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About the Author

J Matthew Cobb

Managing editor of HiFi Magazine


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