NEW YORK — [article id="1625796"]Rihanna joined Jay-Z onstage[/article] Sunday night in Los Angeles to sing "Run This Town" and her Young Jeezy-assisted track "Hard." While it wasn't her first performance since she was assaulted by then-boyfriend Chris Brown in February, it did mark the first time she's performed any new material from the upcoming [article id="1624236"]Rated R[/article] album.
Rihanna told MTV News on Monday that she was ushering in a "new era" at the concert.
"There are a lot of butterflies, a lot of excitement," Rihanna said about her return to music. "I'm anxious. Like, I can't wait. But you're always nervous, because you're about to go do something big. It's a new thing, a new era. But I'm not scared. I'm just really excited. I just can't wait to start. My first time performing the songs was [Sunday] night in L.A. I performed with Jay. We did 'Run This Town' and 'Hard,' and I kept thinking, 'Why the hell am I so nervous?' And I couldn't figure it out. But then I knew why: It was the first time performing one of my new songs. But it was fun. It was so exciting. The energy was awesome."
[article id="1625366"]"Hard" was released to radio last week[/article], featuring some tough, rhyme-like lyrics from Rihanna.
"Tougher than a lion/ Ain't no need in trying/ I live where the sky ends, yup, you know this," she sings in a near-rap flow. "Never lying, truth telling/ That Rihanna reign just won't let up/ ... The hottest bi--- in heels right here."
[article id="1625669"]Rihanna will preview Rated R[/article] on Monday in a worldwide telecast from a performance taking place at an undisclosed location in London.
[url id="http://www.mtv.com/videos/news/454455/rihanna-i-always-want-to-help-young-women.jhtml#id=1625888"]Watch Sway's entire interview with Rihanna.[/url]