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

Published: Sunday 13th Apr 2014 by Sam

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.

{Photo credit: Seye Isikalu}


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


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  1. Fefe April 8, 2014

    YAAAAAS! Cannot wait for the album of the year to arrive. IWNLYD is such a smash

    • tuftelpexdvcnvn April 8, 2014

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    • Tellis April 8, 2014


  2. Jake April 8, 2014

    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. Dev April 8, 2014

    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

    • Tellis April 8, 2014

      Thank you! I don’t know what she was thinking about. Girl please!

  4. Molly April 8, 2014

    Whitney would never record trash like i will never let you down sit down Rita with your minimal talent.

    • Rita Slays April 8, 2014

      A Ci-error stan talking about talent? Have a damn seat. Ciara couldn’t sing to save a life.

  5. Tiffany Jackson April 8, 2014

    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…

    • Career Ender April 13, 2014

      hi there Tiffany!

      you look hot AF!

  6. royalkev April 8, 2014

    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. BEYHIVE_MINAJ April 8, 2014

    Roc Nation has been hyping her basic self up too much,and they need to stop.

    • Molly April 8, 2014

      why are they waiting so long to release the song on Itunes? smh the must want it to flop

      • Molly April 8, 2014


      • BEYHIVE_MINAJ April 8, 2014

        We all know it would flop anyway.

      • rita, Rih Rih is the megstar u will never be April 8, 2014

        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

      • CherylSoldier April 8, 2014

        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. Iconic bey bey April 8, 2014

    She’s way too cookie cutter and basic for my tastes

  9. the voice April 8, 2014

    big difference between star and copy cat artist.

    She is just not a star

  10. xedos April 8, 2014

    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

    • BeyBeyKing April 8, 2014

      How is she starting to act like a megastar?

      • Tellis April 8, 2014


      • Rita Slays April 8, 2014

        That didn’t answer her question

  11. BanjeeRiri April 8, 2014

    I’m beginning to like her.

    • Lana Del Slay April 8, 2014

      Girl there must be something in the water cos so am I.

  12. tresa April 8, 2014

    I’m not feeling this girl now or ever. She’s just not that interesting, and her songs aren’t even that great. Next!

    • RitasLipstick April 8, 2014

      But you cared enough to comment. #StanDowne

      • tresa April 8, 2014

        I commented because I can and its free. And my opinion is just as valuable as everyone else’s.

  13. RICHIE_RICH April 8, 2014

    I like Rita,but she needs better songs.

  14. Rihanna’s P**** Pat April 8, 2014

    She’s kinda sweet if you think about it.

  15. rita, Rih Rih is the megstar u will never be April 8, 2014

    Bad skin
    Looks 30
    Caked in makeup
    double chin
    Cannot sing
    crap songs
    dated Rated R image

    SHE WILL BE DROPPED. Marky my words.

    • Rita Slays April 8, 2014

      “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?
      “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. Mizuki April 8, 2014

    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.

    • rita, Rih Rih is the megstar u will never be April 8, 2014

      THEY are gonna close ROC nation down and once Rih Rih fires them, that will be the end of Jay Z music management career.

      • Tellis April 8, 2014

        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…

    • Tellis April 8, 2014

      She don’t know her direction. She copies everyone.

      • Mizuki April 8, 2014

        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. rita, Rih Rih is the megstar u will never be April 8, 2014

    Is this song popping off in the UK?

    • Kelly Kelly April 13, 2014

      F*** no. Not even top 20

  18. coolness April 8, 2014

    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.

    • Jay Scorpio Navy General April 8, 2014

      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!

      • coolness April 8, 2014

        @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. JOHNVIDAL April 8, 2014

    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.

    • Rita Slays April 8, 2014

      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

      • JOHNVIDAL April 8, 2014

        B**** pretty please STOP IT! LMAO

      • CherylSoldier April 8, 2014

        She’s right tho. You lost your credibility when
        You said rita was talentless. She can
        Obviously sing.

      • Rita Slays April 8, 2014

        Mad cause I spoke the truth? You have no rebuttal I see.

  20. phillydoinit April 8, 2014

    Yassss for her comments on Queen Bey 🙂

  21. Rita Slays April 8, 2014

    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. FutureCIARA April 8, 2014

    Poor Gal

  23. ENOUGH ONIKA (NEW & IMPROVED) April 8, 2014

    Girl…just go back to being the basic b*tch in American Eagle ringing folks rags up….

  24. whoiam April 9, 2014

    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. Mimi carey April 9, 2014

    She’s generic ugly and damn sure don’t look to be in her early 20s. Is she on crack

  26. JER April 9, 2014

    Still beating that dead horse face I see.

  27. Orabot April 10, 2014

    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. My Gums Tho(aka Teacher) April 13, 2014

    Y’all need to remove this tired ass Rita thread! If you haven’t noticed NO one gives a f***!

  29. rocview April 14, 2014

    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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