What a difference a year makes. In less than twelve months the lives of two seemingly unshakable forces in pop turned upside down and changed the dynamic of not just music but domestic violence. While there has been much discussion about who did what and perhaps the reasons why, Chris Brown and Rihannaâs journey in 2009 from Grammy Award winning super couple to embattled duo kept discussion open about the very real issue of domestic violence and perhaps put a youthful face on something that is often thought to be only suffered by the more seasoned adult or married couple. While Chris Brown and Rihanna endured several months of humiliation and pain resulting from a verbal altercation gone awry, the at once power couple made strides in music, film and humanitarian efforts. Even while embattled with a felony assault case and public scrutiny, Chris Brown learned more about himself and in turn returned to music in late 2009 as a maturing, talented and humanitarian focused youth. Topping Singersoomâs Top 30 Under 30, a list of the yearâs top 30 R&B/Pop male acts under the age of 30 chosen by fans, Brown showed staying power and proved that his talent, above all, was undeniable. Instead of just telling fans he was sorry for what happened between him and Rihanna and that he was appreciative of them standing by, Brown announced a fan appreciation tour. Kicked off in November, the tour made rounds through over ten cities in North America, wrapping up just in time for the release of his third studio album âGraffitiâ. Rihanna, admitting to have been embarrassed for part of the year, triumphed near the end of 2009 via music and by empowering women through a feature in Glamour Magazineâs âwomen of the yearâ issue. Making a number of appearances throughout the year including a spot in Kanye Westâs âParanoidâ music video and Jay Zâs âRun This Town,â Rihanna returned to music with the controversial single âRussian Rouletteâ and a follow up buzz track âWait Your Turn (The Wait Is Ova)â. While weâre unsure just what the future holds for Rihanna, amidst controversy, she looks poised to have a strong 2010. As the saying goes you have to go through it to get to it. In 2010 both Brown and Rihanna are poised to make strides in doing what they love â music. As both have stated in interviews with Larry King Live, 20/20 (Diane Sawyer) and many others, their story is not about the past but instead the future by taking steps to make stronger and wiser choices.
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