Saturday, March 12, 2011

Naima Adedapo adds some Reggae Flair to "Umbrella"

American Idol Season 10's Naima Adedapo sings "Umbrella" by Rihanna on the Top 13 show. The Idols were asked to pick a song by their personal 'Idol'. Naima choose Rihanna, an artist she "truly respects and admires." Naima had the good luck of working with producer Tricky Stewart, who produced the original for Rihanna. "He's gonna let me put a little bit of me in it," said Naima, adding "The only way you can take a song like "Umbrella", and that's current, and make it your own, is by doing you." And she did. Naima was the only contestant who truly performed a current, commercially viable song on the Top 13 show. The Reggae change-up in the middle added spice. The dancing could have, no should have, been left out. She did not have the breath control to dance and sing, and you heard her pant after the dance segments. (Also, according to posts on boards and forums, the spread-leg dancing put some people off; they found it vulgar, and this may have cost her some votes.)

The audience and judges enjoyed the up-beat performance. Aerosmith's Steven Tyler said, “Naima, you’re crazy good. I love ya. A little pitchy. You brought flavor tonight. You brought another little something. I adore you for that.” Jennifer Lopez liked it too, adding, “I don't care about all the pitchy. You got fire girl. You dancing up there. You're giving us your Reggae flavor, you're rapping. You’re doing it like stars do it. You need to work on the control. I’m glad you came out and did what you did.” Randy Jackson did his "I'm not really impressed" hahahaho, then said, “I differ with Jennifer. I care about the pitchiness. You’ve got to have the breath and the control. The cutoffs were a little rough. I loved the whole Reggae thing. I was like, Yo! Make a whole Reggae version of it. Yo. Give me more of that.”

"Umbrella" is a song recorded by Barbadian R&B singer Rihanna, featuring a rap verse by rapper Jay-Z. It was released as the lead single for Rihanna's third studio album "Good Girl Gone Bad". The track was released worldwide on March 29, 2007, and since its release, "Umbrella" has been covered by many artists worldwide.



Critics gave positive reviews to the song "Umbrella", many appreciating the "ella, ella" hook. It is generally considered Rihanna's signature song and achieved commercial success reaching the Top 10 in many countries. In the United Kingdom, where the song's chart performance generated controversy when the country was experiencing excessive rain at the time, it is deemed an iconic song and was one of the most played songs on radio in the 2000s. It managed to stay at number-one on the UK Singles Chart for ten consecutive weeks, the longest run at #1 for any single of that decade. The song is listed #3 on the 100 Best Songs of 2007 published by Rolling Stone Magazine.

Rihanna performed "Umbrella" at the 2007 MTV Movie Awards and was the closing song of the "Good Girl Gone Bad" and the "Last Girl on Earth" Tour. The accompanying music video features Rihanna covered in silver paint. In 2008, "Umbrella" earned Rihanna and Jay-Z a Grammy Award for Best Rap/Sung Collaboration in addition to receiving nominations for Record of the Year and Song of the Year.

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