Features | Awards

The Memento Award for Forgetting Rihanna's Name

By Chet Betz | 7 December 2010

Rihanna
“What’s My Name”
(Def Jam; 2010)







It’s a story as old as time: girl forgets herself and makes it with Drake. Or it’s a story at least as old as Degrassi: The Next Generation. So about a decade. But to recap: in song’s intro Drake slow-spits some awkward come-on about the square root of 69 and Rihanna begins, quote, “losing [her] mind.” Hey, I can do math, too! Anyways, I think that’s the only explanation the song offers for the fact that Rihanna’s chorus asks ad nauseam, “Oh nana, what’s my name?” Is she testing Drake or herself? If it’s herself, hi, your name’s Rihanna. You’re famous. You shouldn’t let Drake enter every door he opens or however you put it because that’s just gross. And I’m pretty sure Drake knows your name—he’s not that big of a douche. Well, okay, he is, but he’s not that big of an idiot. But the greatness of “What’s My Name” can’t be ignored—it uses gleaming synth bombast to make us feel like there’s some profound sentiment in what’s going on, which just makes us focus more and more on the fact that Rihanna can’t remember her name, which is hilarious. Dumbly pretty and unintentionally funny, “What’s My Name” is like the Kellie Pickler of R&B pop tracks. But it’s not faking.