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Rihanna Returns to the Stage With Help from Jay-Z, Jeezy in London

November 17, 2009 9:52 AM ET

Rihanna returned to the stage in London last night with a little help from her friends. Performing her first concert since her February 8th altercation with Chris Brown, the singer performed a 45-minute set featuring hits and new songs off her upcoming Rated R, as well as two special guest appearances by Jay-Z and Young Jeezy. Rihanna, wearing a now-trademark eye mask and leotard ensemble, kicked off the show with Rated R's first two singles "Wait Your Turn" (watch it above) and "Russian Roulette" before launching into her past chart-toppers like "Disturbia," "Take a Bow" and "Don't Stop the Music," the BBC reports.

Rihanna's fierce fashions: check out photos of the star onstage and off.

Rihanna performed at London's Brixton Academy for the launch of the Nokia X6, and the performance was streamed live globally. Midway through the set, Young Jeezy emerged to perform his Rated R collaboration "Hard," but the real surprise came in the encore, when Jay-Z appeared to perform both "Run This Town" and "Umbrella." As Rolling Stone noted yesterday, both Jay-Z and Kanye West were on hand for Beyoncé's London concert the night before, West didn't make it out for "Run This Town" at Brixton.

After breaking her silence about the Brown assault in a high-profile interview two weeks ago, last night's concert was the final hurdle Rihanna had to clear to officially get her career back on track. Rihanna previously performed "Run This Town" with Jay-Z and West on the premiere episode of The Jay Leno Show, but this marked the first time since February she appeared live in front of a large audience. Rated R is out November 23rd.

Related Stories:
Rihanna Relives "Dangerous" Relationship in Bloody "Russian Roulette" Video
Rihanna Breaks Silence About Chris Brown Incident in Emotional "20/20" Interview
Rihanna's Black-and-White "Wait Your Turn" Video Premieres

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Song Stories

“Try a Little Tenderness”

Otis Redding | 1966

This pop standard had been previously recorded by dozens of artists, including by Bing Crosby 33 years before Otis Redding, who usually wrote his own songs, cut it. It was actually Sam Cooke’s 1964 take, which Redding’s manager played for Otis, that inspired the initially reluctant singer to take on the song. Isaac Hayes, then working as Stax Records’ in-house producer, handled the arrangement, and Booker T. and the MG’s were the backing band. Redding’s soulful version begins quite slowly and tenderly itself before mounting into a rousing, almost religious “You’ve gotta hold her, squeeze her …” climax. “I did that damn song you told me to do,” Redding told his manager. “It’s a brand new song now.”

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