That was one crazy ride! The 777 Tour has wrapped two weeks and we are still trying to remind ourselves if we’ve really been there! Not to mention that a couple of days in our calendar seem completely vanished.
A couple weeks ago, we were invited to join Rihanna on the 777 tour – 7 shows in 7 cities in 7 countries… Travelling on a Boeing 777 (like diamonds in the sky)! If you get an e-mail like that you are already mindblown. Rihanna wants us to join her?! Wow!
Due to some technical issues on our side we’ve decided to join the 777 crew in Stockholm, Sweden. Natalie is from Poland so the flight didn’t take long but for Rodrigo, who is from Brazil, it was a crazy 17h flight. For the very first time, the RihannaDaily founders were united in Sweden, all this thanks to Rihanna herself! Epic!
The 777s were already travelling from the second show in Canada and we had to wait a little longer due to some luggage problems at the airport. When we finally got our tickets and VIP badges we were on our way to Berns, a fancy Swedish nightclub built in the XIX Century. It looked amazing. Rihanna arrived on stage just before midnight and the club was already on fire. And boy! She did a show! I’m not sure if it’s because I was really missing hearing her voice (the last time we saw her was in 2011) or if she got even better. She kicked of with one of the fans favorites, “Cockiness”, which is stuck in our heads till today. The band was killing it as well. There’s something great about such intimate shows. There’s no fancy choreography, no dancers, you can just stand and stare at Rihanna giving it all from herself. She also sang a brand new “Phresh Out The Runway” and I guess most of us were trying to copy that catwalk later in the day (night) in front of the mirror. Later in the plane the band shares it’s currently their favorite track from the new album and you could see it! They were all into the beat. The only thing that might be a little disturbing during the show was the audience. It was a nightclub and we had a weird feeling most of the people who were there just came to party and suddenly noticed that Rihanna is performing. Everyone needed to record it on their camera phones…everyone. The insane heat among the audience (there were mostly men wearing suits and hoodies) forced us to change our “third row” to the very back… But hey, we still have so much more of Rihanna to see, let’s share!
Rihanna proved (does she even have to prove it anymore?) that Jay-Z knew exactly what he was doing when he signed her at age 16 during “Stay”. Not sure how about you but I was brought to tears. It’s currently at the top of “favorite Unapologetic song” on our website so I’m only guessing the majority of fans feels the same.
“Diamonds” started with the famous James Bond theme song “Diamonds are forever” and it was amazing to see her performing it live. On the backscreen we could see clips from the video. The gig was over one hour long and finished with “We Found Love”. The whole club got illuminated with colorful lights and it was for sure that the roof was on fire! We were mindblown.
After the show was finished we’ve met Marte from www.rihanna.no who came here all the way from Norway – this means the Rihanna Navy was in the house after all! Some people decided to stay for the afterparty but since we didn’t feel the crowd interesting (regular Friday night partygoers) we’ve decided to head to the hotel and see a little of Stockholm around the venue (it was 2am so really just a little). Next day we’ve heard that Rihanna showed up two hours later to work as a bartender and we were a little upset we missed her. But later we found out that these few hours of sleep was a blessing. At 8:30am we were already inside our bus (managed only to grab one bite of breakfast since as “new” to the group we weren’t informed about the change in schedule).
Soon we were on our way to Arlanda airport, where we entered by the backstage gate straight to VIP lounge. Unfortunately it was never designed to hold 250 people at the same time so it took quite a time to finally get us all to the plane. As we were with the first bus, we were there after 10am.
The flight attendants were already open to all our requests… Food, drinks…all was waiting. We were waiting for a takeoff… After some time the band has arrived and Rihanna’s manager (who shook hands with everyone on board) introduced them to the press who were waiting for some good material. Nuno (guitar player), Adam (bass) and Omar (keyboard) were gladly answering all questions. Asked what do they think about this 777 tour, Nuno joked that at first they were told it’s going to be a 333 tour. They talked about the new album and working with Rihanna. Chris (drums) joined them shortly and everyone was happy that they were getting some interviews. Unfortunately Rihanna was late. When she finally boarded, it took some time to make everyone seated and finally the Boeing 777 took off. Paris here we come!
At around 6pm we landed at Roissy and again it took us over an hour to finally pick up our luggage (if you ask me I feel luggage was the reason we kept on being delayed). But that wait allowed us to meet some more people from the 777 plane – there were journalists, tv hosts, bloggers and fans. We talked with some people working with RiRi and were surprised how many people knew our site… Some of them even recognized us before we walked to them to say hello! Aww!
After getting our bags, we started to head to the hotel and had to face some traffic at Boulevard Périphérique. Our hotel was right next to Arc d’Triumph and again we were sure that Rihanna’s camp did everything to give us some VIP treatment. It was beautiful. This time we were informed we need to rush to the venue. The theatre was located near the famous Moulin Rouge in Montmartre. The place was full and still so many fans were waiting outside hoping to get free tickets. Rihanna Navy was in the house this time!
Since the day before I hardly managed to get any good shots for our website I got an opportunity to go to press section – the most awesome place to be! For the beginning of the show I was standing (sitting/kneeling) just before the stage, having all audience behind my back… Yup, I’m jealous of myself even thinking about it now. And yes, this time I had some great shots!
Being so close to Rihanna felt surreal. Even though at first she didn’t pay attention to cameras taking her pictures, she later noticed me and finally she knew we are here! After a couple of songs I was back to my balcony (only 6 photo reporters can make pictures at the show with just 2 at the same time so it was still unbelievable I could go there). Rihanna was looking all the time at our section literally raping my camera with her beautiful eyes. Can there be a better fan experience?
The show was cut short by the venue owners and RiRi had to skip some of the ballads and hip hop collaborations. Such a shame because the fans were on fire!
After the show we met so many fans! Next time we gotta go out all together, because you guys are great! We even met the www.rebellerihanna.com and www.rihannaworld.nl crew! It was so amazing to finally talk with so many Rihanna fans!
We were told that Rihanna is a little upset that she can’t spend more time with her 777 crew and that they booked at last-minute a club for an afterparty (it wasn’t scheduled at first). We all went to the famous VIP Room and could enjoy some good music and drinks. Weren’t the club dancers amazing? We had our own VIP balcony just for the entourage. The band was already there enjoying their time off after the show. Jay Brown joined later making sure everyone was having whatever they need (getting to know him a little more we know that Rihanna is in super good hands). DJ Reflex who was warming up the 777 shows was now putting some beats for everyone in the club. He’s good!
At around 3am we noticed some commotion and it was obvious that Rihanna had arrived. The media went wild acting like teenagers seeing their sweetheart idol. There was no way to come any close. It went even crazier when we noticed she wasn’t alone: P.Diddy, Cassie, Pharell Williams, Akon and Omarion were there with her. Just in case anyone didn’t notice the queen was there, the DJ stopped the music to announce her arrival. We could later hear him mixing some of her songs and seeing Diddy dancing along to “Diamonds” sipping Don Perinion at the same time. Rihanna and Cassie were chatting trying to pretend there’s no 100 people behind their security (at least 5 bodyguards). Only Jen and Melissa decided to leave the safe zone and we finally could talk with both of them. No chance to see Ri, too wild. Sigh.
The celeb pack left after an hour and some of us decided to head to the hotel as well. How many free drinks can you have after all?
Jay Brown made sure that everyone would get a safe ride back to the hotel and taxis were waiting in front of the club for us. We decided to see a little of “Paris by night” and walked to the hotel.
We slept just one hour because this time we wanted to make sure we would get a bigger bite of breakfast. Most people were walking with their shades on. It was a rainy morning. After waiting for some people who just couldn’t wake up on time (yes, we weren’t waiting for Rihanna most of the time contrary to press reports, surprise!) we headed to the airport. This time Rihanna arrived to the airport with a dozen of policeman making sure there’s no traffic… Too many people waiting for her, right? At the airport, we finally got our super cool 777 bag. We got a fragrance, headphones, socks, t-shirts and more! Everything a related.
When we got to Berlin, we went straight to the venue, where about 200 fans were waiting outside hoping to get a ticket for the concert. The journalists were super excited, they finally had a few hours with wifi to update their websites (first time we actually could update RD). A big table of food and drinks was waiting for us as well. Due to technical issues (the screen didn’t want to work) the show was 3 hours late, which made some German fans pretty mad. When everything was fixed and Rihanna has finally got to the stage, the energy was amazing. That was another amazing show. Too bad there were so many big cameras blocking our view…
On the flight from Berlin to London, a flight attended was running to her seat right when the plane was about to take off, which made everybody clap for her… and the party didn’t stop! When we were all singing… boom! An Australian DJ decided to run naked around the plane, which was definitely one of the highlights of the tour. He truly became a celebrity on the plane, everybody wanted a piece of him! Lots of pictures, videos, interviews. In our opinion, that was the most fun flight among them all. We even got the chance to taste Jay-Z & Kanye West’s D’usse cognac. Yummy!
The wait from the London airport to the hotel was long, we were on the bus for about 3 hours. What a traffic! At least we had the pleasure to sleep a little more. The hotel, called Grosvenor House, was definitely the fanciest one among all the others. In the afternoon, she headed to the Westfield Mall to turn on the Christmas Lights. Unfortunately, we decided to stay at the hotel and rest a little more, you have no idea how tired we were!
After joining a few journalists and part of the tour crew at the hotel bar before the show, we headed to Forum, the venue chosen for London’s concert. When we got there, it didn’t take long for RiRi to take the stage (thought Nuno was almost late this time as we saw him running to the stage just minutes before the start of the show). Once again we had the chance to watch the show from the photographer’s area – best view ever! It just amazes us how beautiful Rihanna is, it’s like the closer you get, the more beautiful she gets! Kylie Minogue, Alexandra Burke and Stella McCartney were all there watching RiRi. The show was streamed live, so fans from all over the world had the chance to join us on it. After the show, we got the chance to meet some huge UK Rihanna Navy members, what a pleasure to meet them! Then we had a couple free hours at the after party, which was held inside the venue. This was the last stop for Natalie so we felt a little down it’s the end of our trip together. We got back to the hotel, Rodrigo took the bus and went to the airport – NYC was the next and last stop.
After a long night and morning at the airport, we finally took off. Everybody was expecting Ri to show up one second and last time, but all we could see was her band… until the last 5 minutes! When we were ready to land in NYC, guess who showed up?! Rihanna herself. She apologized for not talking to the press while on the plane, explaining that this was the only time to get some sleep and rest. She looked tired didn’t talk much, just answered a few journalists questions and went back to her seat.
In NYC, Ri signed autographs at the Best Buy Theater for a couple hours. I, Rodrigo, finally had another chance to talk to her a little, she gave me a tight hug and thanked for everything we do at Rihanna Daily. So sweet! Then it was show time in NYC and the everybody was exhausted, but of course RiRi managed to make us sing, jump and dance along with her. According to her, that was her favorite concert. The crowd went wild when they noticed that Jay-Z was there. Last show, last day! Who still had energy enough, joined Rihanna and tons of celebrities at the concert’s after party held at Jay-Z’s 40/40 Nightclub.
For sure this was one of the most memorable experiences in our lives and we would like to thank everyone who made it happen! Being a part of the 777 only proved even more how hard-working and talented singer Rihanna is. We’re happy we could witness it with our own eyes instead of reading press reports (which are often far from truth as we could later see).
Yes, we were late most of the times everywhere (but remember it was a group of over 250 people!), we can’t say anything bad about the food as some stated that it was terrible (there was a lot of food…and drinks!) and the fact we didn’t have than many chances to talk with Rihanna is totally understandable (at least for us). If we (just being there) were super exhausted after a few days, I can’t even imagine how did Rihanna manage to put out an AMAZING show every day without even showing a sign of being tired. She really is a SUPERWOMAN! The most important for us was being able to see her everyday giving an amazing show! Can’t wait for the Diamonds World Tour!