Rita Ora: Split from Jay Z’s record label ‘mutual and respectful’

Rita Ora

Rita Ora has spoken about her split from Jay Z’s record label Roc Nation, saying the decision was “mutual and respectful”.

The singer released her first album, Ora, through the rapper’s label but parted ways with him and signed a contract with Atlantic Records in 2016, with her first single in two years, Your Song, released this week.

In a podcast interview with The Sun’s Dan Wootton, Rita addressed the rumours around what had caused the label split with her mentors Jay Z and his wife Beyonce, who she had become good friends with.

She said: “We made a mutual decision I’d like to say in a really respectful manner. It was a business decision and we all went our separate ways.

“No matter what happens there’s nothing that can replace what they did for me on my first record and I’m forever thankful for that and for them – the best mentors in the world, me being a crazy Beyonce fan.”

Jay Z and Beyoncé

Rita’s contract coming to an end coincided with the release of Beyonce’s 2016 album Lemonade, in which she appeared to suggest trouble in her marriage and kept fans guessing as to the identity of a mysterious woman referred to in her lyrics as “Becky with the good hair”.

Poison singer Rita said: “The truth is it’s a respectful separation and there’s no bad blood whatsoever. There’s nothing but smiles and love in every direction.

“That’s never going to go away, the history you have with someone and if they change your life in such a crazy way you can’t just forget about it.”

Rita also spoke about her other famous friends, who include mentor Madonna, and Ed Sheeran who she collaborated with on writing Your Song.

She said of Ed: “From the person making you the cappuccino to the president, he’ll talk to you the same, that’s who Ed is.”


Rita had fond words for Madonna too, saying: “She really does take people under her wing.

“Every step I take with her has always been a progressive one and you can always learn from a woman like that.”

She added that she was happy for her former X Factor co-star Cheryl on the birth of her son, Bear, in March.

Rita addressed the less pleasant subject of a robbery that she was the victim of in 2015 while she and her sister slept.

She said: “It still affects me even today, going to sleep. Knowing there was a stranger in your home is never a nice feeling.

“It was harder for my sister because she had the actual face to face with the robber.”

Rita added that she had increased her security “200%” since the incident.

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