Love Without Tragedy / Mother Mary

Album: Unapologetic (2012)

Songfacts®:

  • Following Rihanna's duet with Chris Brown, "Nobody's Business," on the track listing, this deeply personal, two-part emotional retreat appears to be about her self-destructive relationship with the singer. The first part sees Rihanna mourning the events when she became the most famous victim of domestic abuse in recent memory ("Who knew the course of this one drive, injured us fatally"). The second half sees the Barbadian songstress confessing her confused emotions ("Mother Mary, I swear I wanna change"), before giving way to her feelings for Brown ("Let's live in the moment. As long as we got each other. Die in the moment. I'm prepared to die in the moment").
  • The song features a rhythmic riff reminiscent of the one in The Police's 1979 hit, "Message In a Bottle."
  • The song was written by Terius "The-Dream" Nash, who also co-penned Rihanna's smash hit "Umbrella." He recalled in a Genius attribution:

    "We were in London, and Rihanna's grandma had just passed. I wrote this the night she found out, and I remember talking to her for a little bit. 'Mother Mary' and 'Love Without Tragedy,' those were two records blended together. The feeling in both of those records was the same. I was like, 'I want to write what the heart is.' You may not be going through something like that, but some people are, and they'll be attracted to that part. And everybody else in the club will be like 'Pour it up, pour it up!'"

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