The lyric, featured on a song from 2016’s lauded ‘Lemonade‘ LP, appears to allude to an affair between the pop star’s husband Jay-Z and another woman, who is referred to by Beyoncé as “Becky with the good hair”.
Since the release of the song there has been a huge amount of speculation about the identity of the woman but nothing confirmed from any side.
In a new interview as part of Louis Theroux’s TV series Louis Theroux Interviews…, Ora was asked about rumours that she was the notorious Becky, largely stemming from her being signed to Jay-Z’s Roc Nation label and being photographed wearing a ‘J’ necklace.
To laughs from Ora, Theroux said: “When Beyoncé had her album, there was a mysterious woman called who allegedly Jay-Z had cheated with,” Theroux explained, with Ora laughing.
“Then at some point in 2016, with ‘Lemonade’ in the air, you posted a picture of yourself with lemons on your bra and a ‘J’ around your neck.”
Ora then responded: “Oh my god, it literally was a coincidence,” Ora responded. “I didn’t even think about it, I swear. And it wasn’t a J, it was an R. They flipped it round and then it looked like a J.”
Asked by Theroux whether the necklace was “designed to intrigue” or drum up rumours, Ora then responded: “No, it had nothing… No, that was my own design with an underwear company called Tezenis that I was working with.
“This is what I mean, man. A pinch of salt,” she added. “You’ve got to take things with a pinch of salt. And that’s what’s insane. I had to just sit through that until a good friend of mine, Katy Perry, gave me a hilarious badge that said ‘not Becky’.”
Elsewhere in the interview Ora was asked about what happened to all the music she had recorded, including a second album that was meant for release under Roc Nation. The singer took the label to court in 2015 to be released from her contract on the grounds the firm had neglected her. Roc Nation countersued and a settlement was reached in 2016.
Ora told Theroux she had been recording for “two or three years straight” before Roc Nation shelved plans to release her second album. “There was a whole moment that was about to happen, I recorded a music video and they scrapped it. I felt really disappointed like I’d let them down.”
Calvin Harris then shut down rumours that he produced an album for Rita Ora that never saw the light of day, tweeting: “Entire thing is a myth, there is one unreleased song i worked on and it isn’t good.”