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Exclusive: Rita Ora Talks New Whitney Inspired Album, US Debut, Beyonce & More

As breakout stars go, few have shone brighter than Rita Ora.

Indeed, since blazing onto the scene in 2012, the Roc Nation priori has achieved a brand and strand of success many seasoned artists could only dream of. Namely three #1 singles, a Platinum album, and endorsement deals aplenty.

Now, with a new album due just after Summer, the Jay-Z protégé is warming up the masses with the set’s lead single ‘I Will Never Let You Down’.

That Grape Juice recently caught up with the singer, who dished on the LP’s Whitney Houston-inspired sound, and collaboration list (which includes Prince!)

The London-bred beauty also shared her views on Beyonce‘s “gangster” status, her own brand hustle, and her long-awaited US debut.

As ever, That Grape Juice ask the questions you really want answers to. Hit ‘PLAY’ above to watch our EXCLUSIVE interview with Rita Ora.

rita-ora-tgj22
{Photo credit: Seye Isikalu}

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‘I Will Never Let You Down’ hits iTunes US on April 22nd & iTunes UK on May 11th.

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Your thoughts?

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59 Comments

  1. April 8, 2014 at 9:59 am
    Fefe says:
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    YAAAAAS! Cannot wait for the album of the year to arrive. IWNLYD is such a smash

    • April 8, 2014 at 10:38 am
      tuftelpexdvcnvn says:
      Vote

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    • April 8, 2014 at 12:58 pm
      Tellis says:
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      GOOD-BYE RITA!!!!!!!!!! SHE LOOKS LIKE SHE FINALLY TOOK A BATH! GIRL…

  2. April 8, 2014 at 10:16 am
    Jake says:
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    When will managers learn ? You release the song on iTunes before the video and not a month later . She’ll flop due to her management sorry .

  3. April 8, 2014 at 10:23 am
    Dev says:
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    Using Whitney as any comparison is silly for even the most talented and celebrated artists, so Rita is reaching. IWNLYD is nowhere near a Whitney classic

    • April 8, 2014 at 12:40 pm
      Tellis says:
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      Thank you! I don’t know what she was thinking about. Girl please!

  4. April 8, 2014 at 10:28 am
    Molly says:
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    Whitney would never record trash like i will never let you down sit down Rita with your minimal talent.

    • April 8, 2014 at 3:55 pm
      Rita Slays says:
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      A Ci-error stan talking about talent? Have a damn seat. Ciara couldn’t sing to save a life.

  5. April 8, 2014 at 10:44 am
    Tiffany Jackson says:
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    Who is this chick? Whitney Houston could actually SANG. This gurl has a below average voice. The noise (music, if thats what she calls it) she makes is corny, stale & forgettable. This child will be forgotten about in the next 2 years…

    • April 13, 2014 at 6:40 am
      Career Ender says:
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      hi there Tiffany!

      you look hot AF!

  6. April 8, 2014 at 10:46 am
    royalkev says:
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    Well at least she’s ambitious (that Whitney impact >>>>)… I like the single, I just hope Rita recorded material for this album that allows us to really identify with her as an artist.

  7. April 8, 2014 at 10:51 am
    BEYHIVE_MINAJ says:
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    Roc Nation has been hyping her basic self up too much,and they need to stop.

    • April 8, 2014 at 10:53 am
      Molly says:
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      why are they waiting so long to release the song on Itunes? smh the must want it to flop

      • April 8, 2014 at 10:54 am
        Molly says:
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        they

      • April 8, 2014 at 11:05 am
        BEYHIVE_MINAJ says:
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        We all know it would flop anyway.

      • April 8, 2014 at 12:58 pm
        rita, Rih Rih is the megstar u will never be says:
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        BECAUSE THEYT KNOW SHE WILL FLOP. THE SONG came to RADIO AND VEVO LAST WEEK; it should, like everyone else be on ItUNES. tHEY ARE WAITING TO 12 th of may.

        What they are trying to do is force feed her down; they have the song playing on Rimmel tV ad and she is played on radio.

        If that does not work, she will won’t drop that album in September

      • April 8, 2014 at 1:01 pm
        CherylSoldier says:
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        How is she a flop? She’s huge in the uk, and
        Everyone knows that breaking the us is
        A gradual process if you’re not American.
        Go devote this energy to Ciara and nicki.

  8. April 8, 2014 at 11:12 am
    Iconic bey bey says:
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    She’s way too cookie cutter and basic for my tastes

  9. April 8, 2014 at 11:14 am
    the voice says:
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    big difference between star and copy cat artist.

    She is just not a star

  10. April 8, 2014 at 11:32 am
    xedos says:
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    So much hype and no substance. The difference between her and Rihanna is,rihanna didn’t start out with any hype.what she did was produced hits.she built a foundation by touring malls and fairgrounds during the summer
    She built a core base who grew up with her.
    This girl started to believing her hype and start to act like a megastar without any substance

    • April 8, 2014 at 11:42 am
      BeyBeyKing says:
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      How is she starting to act like a megastar?

      • April 8, 2014 at 1:01 pm
        Tellis says:
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        SHE HAS TRIED IT WITH HER FAKE SELF.

      • April 8, 2014 at 3:58 pm
        Rita Slays says:
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        That didn’t answer her question

  11. April 8, 2014 at 11:38 am
    BanjeeRiri says:
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    I’m beginning to like her.

    • April 8, 2014 at 11:40 am
      Lana Del Slay says:
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      Girl there must be something in the water cos so am I.

  12. April 8, 2014 at 11:41 am
    tresa says:
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    I’m not feeling this girl now or ever. She’s just not that interesting, and her songs aren’t even that great. Next!

    • April 8, 2014 at 11:43 am
      RitasLipstick says:
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      But you cared enough to comment. #StanDowne

      • April 8, 2014 at 11:57 am
        tresa says:
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        I commented because I can and its free. And my opinion is just as valuable as everyone else’s.

  13. April 8, 2014 at 11:51 am
    RICHIE_RICH says:
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    I like Rita,but she needs better songs.

  14. April 8, 2014 at 11:57 am
    Rihanna's P**** Pat says:
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    She’s kinda sweet if you think about it.

  15. April 8, 2014 at 12:54 pm
    rita, Rih Rih is the megstar u will never be says:
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    Chubby
    Bad skin
    Looks 30
    Caked in makeup
    double chin
    Cannot sing
    crap songs
    dated Rated R image

    SHE WILL BE DROPPED. Marky my words.

    • April 8, 2014 at 4:04 pm
      Rita Slays says:
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      “Chubby”- lmao!! I bet you’re built like a house and mad insecure. Rita’s body is hot
      “dated Rated R image” – her image is Gwen Stefani inspired and Gwen went solo before Rih was a factor so who is copying who?
      “cannot sing” – LMAOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!! A RIHANNA FAN COMING FOR VOCALS!!! I DONT NEED TO SAY ANYMORE!!
      “Bad skin” – even her haters on TGJ compliment her complexion
      “looks 30” – She doesn’t look 30 and 30 isn’t even old.
      “SHE WILL BE DROPPED. Mark my words.” We have marked your words and have been doing so for 2 years. Rita is still signed and still getting pushed by Roc Nation. How many times are you going to wrongly predict her being dropped before you realize IT WILL NEVER HAPPEN??

  16. April 8, 2014 at 12:54 pm
    Mizuki says:
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    Rita is a beautiful girl, but I don’t think she even knows the direction she’s going. Roc Nation is losing so much credibility to be honest…they’ve shown themselves to be a weak and non-dependable management team. Shakira, Kylie Minogue, M.I.A., and Rita Ora are examples of how pitiful they are.

    • April 8, 2014 at 12:56 pm
      rita, Rih Rih is the megstar u will never be says:
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      THEY are gonna close ROC nation down and once Rih Rih fires them, that will be the end of Jay Z music management career.

      • April 8, 2014 at 1:04 pm
        Tellis says:
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        Rihanna can’t fire anyone. With her money problems, she’s not leaving. She needs THEM to back her up! She would have been over a long time ago. Next…

    • April 8, 2014 at 1:05 pm
      Tellis says:
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      She don’t know her direction. She copies everyone.

      • April 8, 2014 at 2:28 pm
        Mizuki says:
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        What money problems? Last time I checked she grossed around $43 million and also won 2 lawsuits which she was awarded for and she finished off a $100 million grossing tour just last year. Rihanna is the only person that’s keeping Roc Nation afloat at this point.

  17. April 8, 2014 at 12:55 pm
    rita, Rih Rih is the megstar u will never be says:
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    Is this song popping off in the UK?

    • April 13, 2014 at 6:25 am
      Kelly Kelly says:
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      F*** no. Not even top 20

  18. April 8, 2014 at 12:56 pm
    coolness says:
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    Hmm. So I actually decided to watch the interview (I don’t check for Rita Ora like that, lol) and I quite like her. One thing is for sure though, she’s gorgeous and quite likeable. As for the music, I’m not exactly sold on it and that’s fine. She’s a new artist and it’s usually hard for them to define their artistry the first time around so maybe her sophomore effort will be better. I don’t get the complaints with her using Whitney (R.I.P) as a reference though. Yes, she’s the iconic diva supreme and is rightfully the only one that ‘The Voice’ is best fitting but she is the standard for female Pop vocalists and Rita was simply pointing out that she wants people to be able to ‘feel’ when she sings those Pop songs. She’s no Whitney, hell, she’s not even a Beyonce in the vocal department but she can definitely sing.

    • April 8, 2014 at 2:56 pm
      Jay Scorpio Navy General says:
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      Hmmm… you lost me when you put Whitney and Beyonce in the same sentence… you sounded dumb as f**k cause Beyonce the greatest screamer after Alicia Keys!!!

      Rita Whora will continue to FLOP harder than a sponge cake…

      Dats All!

      • April 8, 2014 at 5:35 pm
        coolness says:
        Vote

        @Jay Scorpio Navy General, Okay… maybe I was a biT delusional to put Whitney and Bey in the same sentence but no need to insult.

  19. April 8, 2014 at 2:53 pm
    JOHNVIDAL says:
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    Girl! LMAO we´ve heard that terribly generic single. How are we supposed to believe the album is inspired by Whitney Houston??????????????? LOL I swear these talentless girls are feeling themselves too much just cause they have some “hits” and forgettable singles at the moment. Same goes for the rest of clones who could be replaced by any other girl.

    • April 8, 2014 at 4:09 pm
      Rita Slays says:
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      Rita is far from talentless. Her vocal range sh*ts on your fav Gaga’s and she has much better control over her voice then the lady in your Gravstar. Rita’s voice has soul to it, look up her singing Shine Ya Light live on Jimmy Kimmel. As for the Whitney comparison, lets not act like Whitney didn’t have catchy meaningless pop songs. Remember I Just Wanna Dance With Somebody? And its just one single, how do you judge an entire unheard album from one single? Have a damn seat

      • April 8, 2014 at 4:17 pm
        JOHNVIDAL says:
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        B**** pretty please STOP IT! LMAO

      • April 8, 2014 at 4:20 pm
        CherylSoldier says:
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        She’s right tho. You lost your credibility when
        You said rita was talentless. She can
        Obviously sing.

      • April 8, 2014 at 4:50 pm
        Rita Slays says:
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        Mad cause I spoke the truth? You have no rebuttal I see.

  20. April 8, 2014 at 3:44 pm
    phillydoinit says:
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    Yassss for her comments on Queen Bey 🙂

  21. April 8, 2014 at 4:46 pm
    Rita Slays says:
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    It’s always the same haters with the same sh*t to say. She gets too much promo, she looks old, she’s coping XY and Z, She’ll never make it in the US, she’ll get dropped soon even though we’ve been saying this for 2 years, blah, blah, blah. It’s stale now. Try something new. Rita isn’t going anywhere and this album is already sounding much better then ORA. People for get that Whitney wasn’t all power ballads, she had catchy fun pop tracks. You obviously aren’t a Whitney fan if you think she’s above doing a song similar to I Will Never Let You Down when she already has multiple songs like it in her catalog. Rita has a great voice, likeable personality, a catchy single, and the look to be big in the US. She just needs the right promo. And as someone already said, Roc Nation has already blundered with IWNLYD. The video shouldn’t have come before radio and iTunes release. And she has yet to announce any real promo spots for it. I’m praying that they don’t drop the ball this time.

  22. April 8, 2014 at 5:09 pm
    FutureCIARA says:
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    Poor Gal

  23. April 8, 2014 at 8:29 pm
    ENOUGH ONIKA (NEW & IMPROVED) says:
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    Girl…just go back to being the basic b*tch in American Eagle ringing folks rags up….

  24. April 9, 2014 at 5:17 am
    whoiam says:
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    TGJ you seem to give Rita Ora a lot of plaudits, I do not know why. I am British, the only things what elevates Rita Ora is that she signed to Jay Z record label, she know goes out with Calvin Harris & the most importing thing is that she is friends with Harry Styles of One Direction. Regarding the music I have not even got a sentence to put with this. Rita Ora gets on bills lower down, you would not even notice her, she is irrelevant, people are not bothered about Rita Ora one way or another which is not good.

  25. April 9, 2014 at 8:10 am
    Mimi carey says:
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    She’s generic ugly and damn sure don’t look to be in her early 20s. Is she on crack

  26. April 9, 2014 at 9:29 am
    JER says:
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    Still beating that dead horse face I see.

  27. April 10, 2014 at 1:46 pm
    Orabot says:
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    This interview was one dimensional.

    With the amount of tension TGJ puts on the Riri vs Rita relationship you would have expected this to be addressed – that would have been an exclusive. Yet on the next post you can guarantee that TGJ will somehow mention them both unnecessarily.

  28. April 13, 2014 at 2:00 pm
    My Gums Tho(aka Teacher) says:
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    Y’all need to remove this tired ass Rita thread! If you haven’t noticed NO one gives a f***!

  29. April 14, 2014 at 12:21 am
    rocview says:
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    I’ve seen too many of these rihanna and rita ora comparisons… It’s ridiculous to be saying rih is better, or rita is better. They’re both good in their OWN ways. These are two different artist. As a rihanna fan myself, I don’t see how Rita’s a “copy” of rihanna. Their MUSIC differs. Even if their genre is pop, their SOUND differs-lyrics and everything. Rita’s got her own thing. Rihanna’s got her own thing. Besides, there’s no hate between these too. And as for rita being a flop?… I highly doubt jay z is stupid. He knows who to sign to roc nation. I’m pretty sure he’s aware of what he’s doing. Rihanna’s proof.

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