Rihanna Reacts to Reaching New Music Milestone as Fans Wait for 'R9' Album

As fans continue to eagerly await Rihanna's long-awaited ninth studio album, affectionately dubbed "R9," the global superstar reached a new milestone that highlights her enduring popularity despite not having released an album since 2016's Anti.

On Wednesday, the music chart tracking account @chartdata on X (formerly Twitter) revealed that Rihanna sold over 1 million total album units in the United States in 2024 alone. Remarkably, the account noted that she is the only artist to achieve this feat without releasing an album in the 2020s.

Upon seeing the impressive stats, Rihanna couldn't help but respond with her signature sense of humor. The 36-year-old singer and businesswoman shared a GIF of herself pulling her ponytail with a smirk, followed by a big smile.

The playful reaction quickly went viral, racking up over 10 million views and likes from her devoted fans, who are patiently waiting for a new album.

While Rihanna has remained tight-lipped about details of the highly anticipated album, she has occasionally teased its progress, further fueling excitement among her Navy fanbase.

On Monday, ET's Kevin Frazier spoke to the GRAMMY-winning superstar during the launch of Fenty Hair at Nya Studios in Los Angeles, California. Rihanna gave an update on her upcoming albumand shut down the latest rumors about her music, which began when she was spotted in New York City with A$AP Rocky sporting a T-shirt that read: "I'm Retired."

"People got triggered with that retired word," Rihanna quipped. "They were like, 'We're never getting an album now.' No one read the other line, it was something about, 'This is as dressed up as I get.'"

 Rihanna celebrates Fenty Hair Brand Launch in LA at Nya Studios on June 10, 2024 in Los Angeles, California.

Rihanna celebrates Fenty Hair Brand Launch in LA at Nya Studios on June 10, 2024 in Los Angeles, California.

Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for Fenty Hair

Fans needn't worry as Rihanna told ET that she's been clocked into the studio -- but it's taking time.

"I think that music, for me, is a new discovery," she said. "I'm rediscovering things. I have been working on the album for so long that I kinda put all that stuff aside and now I'm prepared to go back in the studio. I'm gonna start -- give me a second!"

Rihanna's process includes revisiting the songs that she already has -- but there are still new things to come.

"Yeah, I'm starting over," the mother of two revealed. "But I don’t want to neglect the songs that I have, so I actually want to go back and listen to stuff with new ears, with my new perspective and then see what applies and what I'm still in love with."

Rihanna

Rihanna celebrates Fenty Hair Brand Launch in LA at Nya Studios on June 10, 2024 in Los Angeles, California.

Kayla Oaddams/WireImage

Although she has not released an album since 2016's Anti, her older hits are still finding success. Last week, Rihanna's 2012 single, "Diamonds," was RIAA certified Diamond. The song still gives her the feels to this day.

"Wow, I remember where we made it from the jump. It was in London, and I also remember performing 'Diamonds' on tour," she told ET. "Performing it with all the lights...everyone puts their phone out at that very moment. And it's connected to my grandma. I literally think of her every single time I perform that."

For Rihanna's latest endeavor, Fenty Hair, she's still focused on bringing everyone together -- and creating a product that's inclusive.

"Inclusivity has always been a big, big deal for us," she said of her haircare line. "And we didn't want to change that with going into a new category, which is hair. We wanted to make sure that we applied that. We started off trying to make one product for all hair types and that’s just like one of those things, you can't. So we had to shift gears. We've been working on this for over four years."

Rihanna added, "I just didn't believe that we could continue like that, so I wanted to just make sure that we knew that everyone was included. All hair types, there's not a race to hair. Hair is different for everyone."

Fenty Hair launches June 13 at Fentyhair.com.

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