LONDON, ENGLAND - JULY 24: Rihanna attends the "Valerian And The City Of A Thousand Planets" European Premiere at Cineworld Leicester Square on July 24, 2017 in London, England. (Photo by Karwai Tang/WireImage)
Karwai Tang—WireImage
By Raisa Bruner
August 8, 2017

World famous DJ Diplo — you’ve definitely heard his hits with his Major Lazer team like “Lean On” with MØ or “Cold Water” with Justin Bieber — still has one artist he’d very much like to get to feature on one of his songs: Rihanna, of course. But in an extensive new interview with GQ, the idiosyncratic producer admitted that it’s been challenging to get the “Wild Thoughts” singer to work with him.

“She’s like the one artist that we can’t ever get,” he said. That’s not to say he hasn’t been in a studio with Rihanna trying to make something happen. But the queen of costumes and living her best life was apparently less than impressed with what Diplo brought to the session.

“She was like, ‘This sounds like a reggae song at an airport,'” he told GQ about her response after he played her a tune. “I was like, ‘I’m gonna go kill myself.'” Harsh, RiRi, harsh.

This wasn’t his first attempt at getting Rihanna to bring in the vocals, either. He’d also shared “Lean On” with her, the song that would go on to become Spotify’s most-streamed track in 2015. Her response to that one? “She was like, ‘I don’t do house music,'” according to Diplo.

(That said, Rihanna did seem fine working with producer Calvin Harris on”This Is What You Came For” and her 2011 hit “We Found Love,” both massive tracks that most would indeed classify as “house music,” or at least as EDM-adjacent.)

In the meantime, Diplo’s been eschewing more mainstream events to travel the world and play in unusual destinations for U.S. DJs like Lagos, Kathmandu, and Kampala. With luck, his tour of the globe will inspire him to bring something new to Rihanna for next time.

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