Now Playing: Rihanna – Diamonds

rihanna-diamonds-video-101“Diamonds” is a song recorded by Barbadian singer Rihanna for her seventh studio album, Unapologetic (2012). It was written by Sia Furler together with its producers, Benny Blanco and StarGate. The song premiered on September 26, 2012, during the Elvis Duran and the Morning Show and was digitally released the following day as the lead single from Unapologetic. Def Jam Recordings serviced the single to contemporary hit radio in the United States on October 2, 2012. “Diamonds” is a mid-tempo electronic and pop ballad performed with heavy synthesizers, orchestral sounds, and electronic rhythms. The song’s lyrics serve as a departure from the themes of unhealthy relationships that were on Rihanna’s previous singles.

“Diamonds” was well received by most critics, some of whom complimented Rihanna’s different musical direction, while others criticized the song’s production. The single topped music charts in over twenty countries, including the United States, where it became Rihanna’s twelfth number one single on the Billboard Hot 100 and tied her with Madonna and The Supremes for the fifth-most number one singles in the chart’s history. “Diamonds” was certified quadruple platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA). By May 2013, it had sold over 7.5 million copies worldwide, becoming one of the best-selling singles of all-time.

The song’s music video was shot by director Anthony Mandler, a frequent collaborator of Rihanna’s, and depicts her in four environments that represent the elements of earth, air, water and fire. The video received positive reviews and was praised for its imagery. Some critics believe that the heavily tattooed man intertwined with Rihanna’s arm in the video resembles Chris Brown. The singer performed “Diamonds” on television shows such as Saturday Night Live and The X Factor and included it on the 777 Tour and the Diamonds World Tour set lists. The American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers (ASCAP) recognized it as one of the most performed songs of 2013. The official remix of “Diamonds” featured rapper Kanye West and was released on November 16, 2012. The song has been covered by various recording artists, including Leona Lewis and Misha B.

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