Rihanna & Demi Lovato Sound Flawless Together On “Stay” Live Duet

Rihanna had a nine times Platinum hit duet with Mikky Ekko on her ballad “Stay”, but there’s another star who brought the song to the next level. YouTuber Blighght uploaded a version of “Stay” featuring both Rihanna and Demi Lovato singing the song live, and it’s a real tear-jerker. Rihanna opens the song with an understated and soulful verse, then Lovato sings the second half of the verse, adding a higher vocal timbre that’s beautiful to hear.

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The pair then swap vocals before Rihanna takes the first chorus, and it shows she is a truly stunning vocalist. It takes a lot of talent to take such a stark song, with just a piano backing, and make the lead vocal truly soar, but of course, RiRi is all over it. The duet received quite a warm reception on YouTube, with 14 million viewers tuning in.

Lovato takes the second chorus, and she does a tremendous job on the vocals, making it a real showcase for her range and passionate delivery. Naturally, Lovato and Rihanna’s vocals blend together in the bridge and final chorus, and it’s a guaranteed goosebumps moment. It’s also interesting to see their different vocal approaches, with Rihanna retaining the song’s original somber mood, while Lovato really goes to town on the vocals, hitting the top of her range by belting the final chorus.

It might not be obvious at first, but the video is actually a fan mashup of two live performances from Rihanna and Lovato. Rihanna’s vocal performance is from her SNL appearance in 2013. Lovato covered the song several times in 2013 and 2014, and her vocals were taken from one of her shows in 2014. The editing process was no doubt facilitated by the fact that Lovato’s band remained quite faithful to the original arrangement. You can listen to Rihanna’s original SNL performance of the song with Mikky Ekko below.

Fans had plenty of praise for RiRi and Lovato’s performances, adding comments such as “Their harmony together is so great, like I had chills everywhere. I wish they would do this live together” and “This was unbelievably good. Two different styles and feelings. It’s like Rihanna represents acceptance and Demi represents rebellion. It’s a great fit.”

“Stay” was written by Ekko, Justin Parker, and Elof Loelv during the production of Rihanna’s seventh studio album, Unapologetic. Ekko, who also sings on the studio version, initially wasn’t a fan of the song due to its vulnerability, but his co-writers convinced him to give it another shot. While talking to Gigwise, Ekko later commented on coming around on the song, saying it “had become so special to me as well, and knowing what the track means to me and what I think it means to her too.”

“Stay” was released as the second single from Unapologetic on December 13, 2012. The nine times Platinum “Stay” eventually became the biggest hit from the album, with the first single “Diamonds” also tearing up the charts and gaining a seven times Platinum certification.

If you found yourself moved by this incredible duet, be sure to follow Rihanna on YouTube for more beautiful music collaborations. You can also stay up-to-date with all her news and latest releases by liking her official Facebook Page.

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