Ariana Grande Covers Billboard / Praises Madonna & India.Arie

Published: Friday 15th Aug 2014 by Sam

Ariana Grande‘s omnipresence these days is undeniable. From radio to TV to iTunes, the 21-year-old sensation has emerged as the industry’s definitive breakout star.

It’s fitting, then, that the promo campaign for her new album ‘My Everything’ has carried her to the front of Billboard magazine’s latest issue.

As well as posing it up, the songbird also opens up about some of her biggest inspirations.

Full story below…

According to Billboard, the budding diva played down the incessant Mariah Carey comparisons, instead citing Madonna and India.Arie as two of the names that have inspired her most.

Peep excerpts below…

Okay, so a rising pop star idolizing Madonna isn’t shocking, but the worshipful tone she adopts when speaking of Her Madgesty is arresting. “She is strength, she is freedom, she is wisdom beyond anybody’s comprehension,” says Grande.

Her YouTube covers of Whitney and Mariah aside, Grande was inspired by a less ubiquitous soul singer early in life. “When I was 14, I wanted to make a straight-up, like, India.Arie record,” she explains. “Something really soulful.”

Surprising as her words may be, she’s been echoing them since our interview with her about album #2 last year:

Your thoughts?

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  1. boy August 15, 2014

    Well I don’t blame her…I hope she has longevity.

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  2. Ok August 15, 2014

    So funny that she always says her biggest inspirations are India Arie, Madonna, Whitney etc. Yet Mariah’s influence is the most prevalent in her work.

  3. Musika August 15, 2014

    It sounded like she had to change her answer from Mariah CaREY to India ArIE I mean come on their last names do rhyme 🙂

  4. RoyalKev August 15, 2014

    It’s funny how every artist that claims to be inspired by Madge dwell on her strength or only praise her for her sexually free nature (and never her artistry/music/talent). It’s starting to sound like the best compliment that people can come up with to pay Madonna some respect. Although it’s no secret that Mariah made a big impression on Ariana, I find it interesting that she’s drawn to India. I wonder if that’s an indication of how much growth we’ll come to find in her music if her career sees some longevity. I see the potential in Ariana to make an album that’s really meaningful and artful one day.

    • Era of Tin August 15, 2014

      It’s even more interesting that Janet hasn’t had a hit since Dubya’s first term, is always rated beneath her contemporaries on industry “best of” lists and is now on the verge of dinner theaters. Ariana praises Madonna because she knows that Madonna has outwitted, outlasted and has more hits that everyone else, as opposed to some plastic pop star who used her brother’s last name, copied his every move, relied on a super producing team for all of her hits (that were SO long ago at this point) and then got thrown into the dustbin after one of her n****** was exposed on national TV.

      • um August 16, 2014

        You are so stupid. Janet used her last name?
        ok. And anyone with a brain knows that
        Madonna payed major money for like her last
        10 top tens. The second they get up there,
        they drop dismally. Janet was always the more
        talented one. It’s obvious.

      • Wait August 16, 2014

        Wait, Janet copied Michael’s moves, when
        this?? You idiots always try to come for Janet
        for ALL the wrong reasons. Janet had a
        “super” producing team, really? Jimmy Jam
        and Terry Lewis were still NEW in the
        business. They were actually fans of hers
        because of HER work on TV. What a damn idiot.

    • Avi August 15, 2014

      Sounds like someone is feeling a little salty that Janet didn’t get a shout out.

    • Oran August 15, 2014

      Your “Jan Brady” complex where Madonna is concerned is pitiful. This is all about your seething bitterness over seeing Madonna acknowledged over Janet. Not the first time it’s happened and most likely won’t be the last either. You’re in for more temple throbs and migraines if you can’t reconcile that how it’s been will be how it’ll indefinitely be.

    • Dossome August 15, 2014

      Lmao @RoyalKev clearly got these kids pressed.Why not just use your original names (that’s if you really are 3 people)

    • RoyalKev August 15, 2014

      You guys are all such a fail! Ya’ll stay reading (inaccurately I may add) into everything and swearing up an down all opinions on TGJ build around some stale beef. Miss me with that!

      … But yes, for the record Janet >>>>
      Got your blood boiling???

      Let me break it down for you again *Lauryn Hill voice*

      Janet’s been banned for 10 years and in that time she’s still delivered #1 gold/platinum albums just like Madonna have (who should have no reason not to be going double with all the politics going on in music). Both ladies influence is pretty much the same and even after all these years of people trying to X Janet, she’s very well respected. No stan of Janet’s need to feel hurt about anything. You can downplay her all you want, but Janet’s run from ’86 – 2004 hasn’t missed a beat! It’s in the record books! … 5 of the most memorable eras in Pop music history (#1 albums, successful tours and many #1/top ten singles from mainly 5 albums).

      As for Jan’s career following SB, take notice and see for yourself that she’s still on par with all of her peers, so your hate is dismissed before it’s even entertained. Check Jan credentials!


      I don’t expect Janet to be Ariana’s inspiration? They’re nothing alike, nor is there anything you can find in Ariana’s work that’s remotely similar to Madonna for that matter. You can study my avi all day to answer me, but what I said isn’t based on anything in that photo. It’s called telling the #truth. Try it sometimes… Bye!

      • Era of Tin August 15, 2014

        Janet isn’t “banned”. ROFLMAO! You all cling to that like the holy grail. 😆 That’s just a convenient excuse for her stans to use to try and excuse why she’s been consecutively flopping with lousy albums for a decade. Dixie Chicks suffered a public and corporate backlash and were “banned” from radio too after Natalie denounced the war and president and even lost the support of their CORE target audience but they were still able to go 5x platinum. Janet’s been failing to sell even a million copies of her albums. Care to explain why they were able to still do business while she’s been trying to have a “Mimi” comeback for a decade and failing every time? Face it the GP isn’t at all interested in Janet anymore. At this point she’s just MJ’s lesser sister. Which is why she’s on the verge of being some indie act who has to play small venue. But keep clinging to the SP as an excuse if it. You say “Janet >>>>>>” but the public doesnt think so. WHO commonly gets placed ahead of who whenever “best of/women in music” lists are compiled? Whose sold MORE records? Whose had MORE hits? Whose last tour outgrossed whose? Madonna’s or that laughbly rinky dink “#1’s” tour that played gymnasiums across the country and had trouble even getting a sponsor. LOL WHO is in the RRHOF and got in the very first year she was eligible and who still isn’t even though her debut came out first? Haha. The one Ariana cited as an influence, that’s who!

        “Superbowl”…”banned”…here’s another trigger word for you to ponder: “Pathetic”. 😉

    • RoyalKev August 15, 2014

      I know, I hate when these anonymous people eat a bowl of courage on this board!

    • RoyalKev August 15, 2014


    • RoyalKev August 15, 2014

      @Era of Tin

      Convenient excuse? Is that why the FCC’s former chairman Michael Powell spoke out against the matter 10 years later?

      His words: “the treatment of Jackson and Timberlake – who were lambasted for causing ‘an outrageous stunt’ – was unfair. It all turned into being about her”.

      What’s convenient is for you to cling to country artists (that typically sell more than pop singers). Btw, who isn’t a MJ lessor? You’re reaching!

      As for selling like Mimi is concerned, Janet dominated the 80’s and 90’s. Mariah dominated the 90’s and was going on a 2nd decade when she had her comeback in ’05, put things into perspective a bit when you draw comparisons. Janet’s career span exceeds 30 years. I think this retaliation of yours is soaked in “pressivity” and you obviously feel some kind of way – much more than I do.

      You can bring up “best of” list and the RRHOF all you like, but we all know that when the media’s public image of you isn’t favorable these things aren’t a reality.

      Fact is Janet tours (before SB) >>> Madge’s
      Janet was Madonna’s equal and she was able to be with less material to work with before Superbowl.

      before 2004
      Janet – 7 studio albums
      Madonna – 9

      #1 albums: Janet(5), Madonna (5)
      #1 singles: Janet (10), Madonna (12) – with 2 extra albums

      Tidbit: Janet’s last #1 was in 2001, Madge’s is in 2000. Why is that when Madonna’s suppose to be every female pop star’s superior?

      – Janet’s more awarded.
      – Janet’s tours did better than hers before 2004.

      Trigger word(s) for you: “Smoke and Mirrors”

      • RainDawg August 16, 2014

        lol at the pressed MADonna stan :’)
        Janet is a better singer/songwriter/dancer than Metamucil so she wins, sorry

  5. Proud-Arianator August 15, 2014

    Yass slay them all Miss Grande
    but please you gotta stop dressing like an underage h oo ker

    • SMH August 15, 2014

      She idolizes Madonna. So it only makes sense that she dresses like an underage hooker, since Madonna dresses like an overage hooker.

  6. Dossome August 15, 2014

    My biggest inspiration are Nene Leakes,Jessica Biel,Lisa Marie Presley,Dj Khaleed and Latavia Roberson so i understand where she’s coming from

    • RoyalKev August 15, 2014


      Don’t forget Stevie J, Tameka Froster and Karrine Steffans. The power! The strength! The wisdom!

      • Dossome August 15, 2014

        OMG,Karrine Steffans literally saved my life when i was going through hell..Infact she’s my biggest inspiration ever 😉

    • RoyalKev August 15, 2014

      Exactly! She’s super – head of her game! 🙂

      • Dossome August 15, 2014


    • Stephy August 15, 2014

      Yall Too Funny! LMAO

  7. Stephy August 15, 2014

    Lol, when people speak of Madonna they only speak of her “power” & “Fearless-ness”… They never speak of her talent.

    Anyways, she is praising people like they are her influence but steady sounding & being a clone of Mariah Carey… I hope she achieves LONGEVITY… Like her “new” idol —-> Madonna

    • TRUTH SERUM August 15, 2014

      Why would she continue to praise Mariah when she know that Mariah doesn’t Carr for her much. Madonna embraces talent and supports younger artist. Anyway, I can definitely see her pulling off a more soulful record and India Arie makes amazing music.

      • Stephy August 15, 2014

        She has no soul… Also, her vocals runs are MARIAH… India Arie’s music takes a SOULFUL voice to pull off…

      • TRUTH SERUM August 15, 2014

        I agrr about the runs but, I can hear a lil soul in her voice. She won’t sound like India but I can see her doing more meaningful music.

      • Stephy August 15, 2014

        True. She is definitely a good singer for her age group. Her imitations of Mimi just irritates me. She actually did not sound that way on YouTube (when she was unknown)…

    • Molly August 15, 2014

      Madonna has no talent like you don’t have any morals.

      • Stephy August 15, 2014

        Don’t EVER @ me or type to me again. Thank You & Goodbye!

    • SMH August 15, 2014

      Nobody praises Madonna’s ¨talent¨ because the only talent she has is spreading her legs & her gag reflex.

  8. #Dismissed August 15, 2014

    Hmmmmm it looks like she doesn’t want to name Mariah as one of her inspirations. But go and do yo thing girl.

  9. Molly August 15, 2014

    I wish Ariana the best she’s a true talent

  10. Suicide Blonde August 15, 2014

    That’s the thing with Madonna, her influenc is not limited to her music, her persona, is as powerful as her career, what i get is that this girl is not inspired by her music but by her personality, there’s no other female artist with such a brain, anyone who wants to have a brilliant career, should look up to Madonna, simply as that, like she said: She is wisdom beyond anybody’s comprehension.

    • Stephy August 15, 2014

      Ugh, you remind me of that “JoanCrawford1” commentator. With all this Madonna ass kissing. She is great but she aint the best nor is she some type of GOD!

    • Stephy August 15, 2014

      Also, Elvis was ONLY bigger in the USA!

    • SMH August 15, 2014

      How much does Madonna pay you to kiss her ass daily?

      Let’s be clear. Madonna’s only talent is media manipulation. If she didn’t have shock value and controversy to sell her records, she would still be giving out free blow jobs on the streets of NY, or working at some s** club in Michigan. It’s no secret how she got her record deal, and it wasn’t because of her demo. In fact, it’s no secret how she really got her demo done either.

      • Stephy August 15, 2014

        I See No Lies. She also, got outsold in AMERICA by Mariah Carey with less Albums & less YEARS…

      • Krista August 15, 2014

        @SMH. You love Rihanna and Gaga. So I detect hypocrisy in your comment.

    • TheYoncèTroll August 15, 2014

      Stop the b*******. Madonna is a w****. She is wannabe innovator. If it wasn’t for her spaced out album releases and gimmick, the w**** would have been over. The only thing she can honestly cling to is her copycat touring. Cher, Janet, Diana, Tina, Marilyn Monroe, Marlene Dietrich, Mariah, Whitney, Aretha, Joan Crawford, and so many more are true artists that can be admired for their talent. You tried it though.

  11. FAF August 15, 2014

    This reminds me of nicki vs kim

    Nicki paid tribute

    Kim fans got nasty and hateful with the copying claims

    So she quit mentioning kim and started mentioning lauryn and foxy

    This is exactly what happened with Mariah and Ariana

    • Stephy August 15, 2014

      Except for the fact that, Mariah DOES NOT EVER come from a place of hate & viciousness. The way Lil Kim does when bashing/putting down Nicki… Mimi is just shady not NASTY…

  12. TheYoncèTroll August 15, 2014

    Ariana is shielding from Mariah comparisons (even though she is still blatantly copying her), because she doesn’t know what Mariah feels. TBH, no one does lol. Mariah is known to be shady, so her “I wish her longevity” comment could have been taken the wrong way. Maybe Mariah went well. However, let’s be honest, it not the first time they tried to replace Mariah, so Mariah shouldn’t be that taken back. I just hope Ariana doesn’t end up like Leona Lewis. It would be a shame to see another decent singer gone within a 3 year time period.

    • CATFISH CAREY August 15, 2014


      • TheYoncèTroll August 15, 2014

        WHO ARE YOU? And why do you have so many accounts?

  13. TheOne August 15, 2014

    She clearly admires Mariah but she’s trying to distance herself from MC who she clearly inmates. Smart move on her part. She called Mariah the best vocalist to ever live!

  14. Suicide Blonde August 15, 2014

    I should apologize, it wasn’t my intention to hit some nerves, get well soon y’all.

    • Stephy August 15, 2014


      • Suicide Blonde August 15, 2014

        You want me to go nuts but i won’t baby.

    • JOHNVIDAL August 15, 2014

      Where is @pop royalty? Was he murdered or something?

      • Dossome August 15, 2014

        I think he just got fed up of this place..Even you and I hardly comment on this blog that much.I miss him tho

  15. JOHNVIDAL August 15, 2014

    Girl bye! LOL

    • Dossome August 15, 2014

      Lol,i know right?

  16. Krista August 15, 2014

    Why do people always expect her to praise Mariah though. She already has said how much Mariah means to her. And a young 21 year old girl I would be hesitant because Mariah is too shady. Instead of embracing people who clearly look up to them she throws shade.

    • SLAYRIAH CAREY (TOUR DE FORCE) August 15, 2014

      Mariah has shown respect and admiration to MANY of the singers who came after her. She wished Ariana longevity, which is something very important in this industry so be quiet.

  17. SLAYRIAH CAREY (TOUR DE FORCE) August 15, 2014

    She’s a joke.

    • Proud-Arianator August 15, 2014

      Your whole existence is a joke

      • SLAYRIAH CAREY (TOUR DE FORCE) August 15, 2014

        Bitxh you is who?

  18. #TeamTinashe Stan (“AQUARIUS” 10.7.14) August 15, 2014

    Her being influenced by India.Arie still amazes me to this very day. Ariana is a great singer and I hope she doesn’t go into desperate lane along with Miley Virus.
    I’ve always got a Mariah Carey intertwined with a little bit of Toni Braxton vibe from Ariana when she sings.

  19. YoursGrande111 August 15, 2014

    Whitney Houston is her biggest inspiration vocally… Just because ariana has a whistle register like Mariah had 1990-1996 doesn’t mean she’s inspired by her they both have a huge range, both have Whistle Registers well mariah doesn’t have it now they are both sopranos so that’s why people compare them its so childish. Get a fucken life. I can’t wait for to make a Soulful album

    • SLAYRIAH CAREY (TOUR DE FORCE) August 15, 2014

      LIES! The girl used to tweet Mariah all the time before she got whatever bit if relevancy now. DEAD @ your gravatar! Pressed much?

  20. Belladonna1363 August 15, 2014

    Aww That cover is to cute. Any one with a Brain can see that if you want to be a ICON Madonna is the way to go. Mage Surpass just the Music industry she is a WORLD ICON. And as far as her not brining up Mimi I say if an old b*tch don’t like you,just stop talking about them because the real T is that Singers need people to inspired by them because that’s how you stay remembered but if people stop want to bring you up because there scared your going to talk sh*t about them, What will start to happen is singer like Mimi will start to be 4-gotten

    • Dossome August 15, 2014

      What’s the point of starting tour paragraph with “anyone with a brain” if you knew you were gonna speak in “foolanese”…you basically make zero sense

  21. Proc August 15, 2014

    I love how she paid Mariah dust. Didn’t compliment or insult her. Just didn’t mention her, period. Ignoring someone who is expected to be named can be the ultimately “shade” (and in the end, no one can accuse her of doing anything wrong for simply NOT bringing her up) and Ariana played it well.

  22. Theman August 15, 2014

    Her biggest influence is MC, y’all dumb fuckz better recognize.
    She can GTFOH, with this Arie/Madonna bullshyt..
    This lil fucka is still copying Mimi anyway..
    Madonna was bitter about Gaga cause Gaga has talent..
    People always want MC to kiss a**.. She ain’t say nothing
    Out of the norm as far as AG..

  23. Avenger August 15, 2014

    Ariana should do a song with Eminem. Now THAT would be the ultimate “F#CK YOU!” to Mariah from both of them.

  24. Theman August 15, 2014

    Ariana should get a multiplatinum album and
    A hit by herself. Them maybe MC would give
    Her a nudge.. MC barely talks about other
    Artist, she could give a shyt about this

  25. michelle August 15, 2014

    i like her songs….but she is not likeable i dunno why…..n she has no nothing on mariah carey pls stop comparing…arianna is a good singer but she wont be a legend like mariah…n she never change her hair style? n her brows look so awkward….just saying lol

  26. tits mcgee August 15, 2014

    If people are gonna quote me. Know that I am
    quoting the Queen!


  27. Tisha August 15, 2014

    Lol, Sam you should cover Jeanette McCurdy calling this interview with Ariana BS.

    She was trading back and forth with Perez and basically said everything Arana claimed was a lie.

  28. Slayretha Franklin August 15, 2014

    Whitney and Mariah always mentioned Aretha as there primary influence whether she recognized them or not. Your influences don’t change just because people make comparisons.

  29. credits August 15, 2014

    And It suddenly just became clear to me…It must be the producers who are steering her in the Mariah Carey direction. Let’s hear this girl sing an india Arie inspired album…

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