"Stay (feat. Mikky Ekko)" (CD Single)

Music review by
E.E. Bradman, Common Sense Media
"Stay (feat. Mikky Ekko)" (CD Single) Music Poster Image
Rihanna keeps her lyrics clean in raw, pensive ballad.

Parents say

age 15+
Based on 1 review

Kids say

age 8+
Based on 5 reviews

Did this review miss something on diversity?

Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive, diverse representations in books, TV shows, and movies. Want to help us help them? Suggest a diversity update

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this music.

Positive Messages

"Stay" doesn't have bad messages, but the idea of whether to continue a relationship isn't appropriate for younger kids.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Rihanna has made some controversial decisions, including reuniting with an abusive ex.


The video features Rihanna naked in a bathtub, although nothing graphic is shown.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that "Stay" is one of Rihanna's tamer tracks. Rihanna, in the news as much for her music as she is for her steamy image and her romance with fellow pop star Chris Brown, puts her heart into this straightforward, stripped-down piano ballad. The video is indeed provocative, with Rihanna lying naked in a bathtub, but the song's lyrics are clean and convey love and confusion: She wants her lover to stay, although she's not really sure how to feel about it. Overall, this is a fine choice for younger Rihanna fans.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byTVAGE December 18, 2013
Teen, 13 years old Written byMerveille February 18, 2021

good job

love song with only a tiny sex.
Teen, 13 years old Written bysmashingepicness767 July 13, 2013

A very angelic piece, raw and beautiful at the same time

One of the best songs by Rihanna. Really, I can't choose the best song ever done by her, can I? Her angelic voice blends in beautifully throughout the song... Continue reading

What's the story?

"STAY" is the second Top 10 single from Unapologetic, Rihanna's seventh studio effort. Viewed in light of her 2009 domestic violence issues with Chris Brown and their subsequent on-again, off-again romance, it's tempting to read into these lyrics, which express heartfelt confusion about whether a relationship should continue.

Is it any good?

"Stay" is stripped-down and barebones -- piano, vocals, and a few subtle effects -- and the effect can be hypnotic. Rihanna's vocals are in fine form, and her duet partner is no slouch, either: Apparently, when Nashville singer-songwriter Mikky Ekko submitted the demo, Rihanna liked his voice and brought him onto the finished track; his falsetto sounds great on its own and blended with Rihanna's.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about intense relationships that cause conflicting feelings of pleasure and pain. Why does love sometimes create such strong feelings?

  • How do you think this stripped-down style compares with other Rihanna songs? 

  • Why do you think partners stay in troubled relationships? How can you help a friend who is in a dysfunctional relationship?

Music details

  • Artist: Rihanna
  • Release date: February 13, 2013
  • Type: Single
  • Label: Def Jam
  • Genre: R&B
  • Parental advisory: No
  • Edited version available: Yes
  • Last updated: November 11, 2020

Our editors recommend

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

See how we rate

About these links

Common Sense Media, a nonprofit organization, earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes when you use our links to make a purchase. Thank you for your support.

Read more

Our ratings are based on child development best practices. We display the minimum age for which content is developmentally appropriate. The star rating reflects overall quality.

Learn how we rate