Let’s go back once again to 2002, a year that is clearly turning out to have had more than its share of great pop moments. First of all, this is an English singer called Rhianna. Now although it seems that it has happened a lot over the years, she is not to be confused with the Barbadian singer Rihanna, who went on to have a huge amount of hit singles. I suppose it’s an obvious thing to say, but it would been great if she’d had even a tenth as many hits as her near-namesake.
Rhianna came on to the scene in June 2002 when “Oh Baby” was released. She was in her late-teens at the time, and the word that best describes her hairstyle was “frizzy”. Now once again, this is one that really stood out to me when I heard this on the radio, and it seems that this was given a big promotional push. There was a lot of hope that this one would do well, it definitely deserved to, and this was even used on an advert.
As well as appearing on Top Of The Pops and CD:UK, Rhianna also appeared on The UK Top 40 on the early days of the CBBC Channel, which was good. “Oh Baby” reached no. 18, which was almost disappointing in a way, but she almost certainly would build on this and have more hits. But somehow, this would be her only Top 40 hit. Next in September 2002 was “Word Love”, which I only remember hearing about once on the radio by comparison, and this reached no. 41, which turned out to be something of an anti-climax really.
Also around this time, her only album “Get On” was released, but this didn’t make the Top 75, the minimum placing to officially be a hit. In February 2003 she was given one last chance with “I Love Every Little Thing About You”, which I don’t remember at all from the time, and again, this didn’t make the Top 75, and that was it really, another one who could’ve been a really big star passes us by.
There’s little doubt for me though that “Oh Baby” will always be one of my favourite hits from this era. After this, Rhianna did stay in the music business, going on to work with some other groups about a decade later (but they didn’t have any hits either), and also being a backing singer. Just don’t ask her to sing “Umbrella” though, because, that wasn’t her.