It's been two years since Rita Ora became a household name after nabbing three number one singles and a chart-topping debut album.
It's a mean feat to match with her second studio album, but the Roc Nation starlet has pulled in collaborations with Prince and Macklemore to cement her position as one of the UK's biggest homegrown popstars.
Digital Spy caught up with Rita to talk about her new music, whether she still finds Jay Z an intimidating boss and why she aspires to have Madonna's work ethic.
Congratulations on your new single 'I Will Never Let You Down' - it's very catchy!
"That's the kind of response I was hoping for! Everyone wants a love song you can dance to. When Calvin [Harris] first played it to me I just, I got that feeling I had when I heard Whitney Houston's 'How Will I Know'. They are two completely different songs, but the feelings are very similar; the release, the relief you get from listening to the chorus drop, for example, how it holds in the verses, and then all of a sudden it's just what you've been waiting for."
Now you've mentioned it, it does actually have a 'How Will I Know' vibe.
"That's how it started - it was our inspiration."
Do you do that often?
"Sometimes I think, 'Oh I wish I had that song' and then I take inspiration from it and do my version."
What's the biggest song you wish you recorded yourself?
"'Don't Speak' by No Doubt. I wish I had that song! I love Gwen Stefani so much."
How do you wrap your head around the fact you have collaborated with Prince?
"It was incredible. I went to Minneapolis. I still haven't wrapped my head around it actually. It is probably one of the most surreal things I've ever done. I can't really explain it, you kind of have to listen to the song. It was called 'Be With Me', then it was called 'Pink Champagne', and now it's called 'Champagne Kisses'. It has such great lyrics - so poetic, it's so nice. There's a line where he says, 'The taste of you with someone else, like chocolate cake with no milk'."
That sounds very Prince...
"I mean, come on, it's so poetic. Yeah it's true, nobody wants that chocolate cake without the milk. To me it's what Prince is. The song is mid-tempo upbeat and you can dance to it. It's got a good vibe."
Macklemore is also on the album and it's the first time we'll properly hear him feature on someone else's material.
"I think the good thing about Macklemore is that he is very precise about what he gets involved in. As you can tell he's very passionate about what he puts his name on, because he talks about things people don't usually talk about, and his concepts are very, very passionate. The song, 'Young Rumours', is about believing in what you want and sticking by your gut instinct. It would only ever work with him. If he wasn't on it, I wouldn't put the song out - it wouldn't make sense."
Are there any other collaborations you can tell us about?
"This album wasn't for me to be like, 'Let's see how many features we can get'. This is the first time I'm going to release an album in the States, so I'd only have somebody on the record who would be there for a reason. It wouldn't just be because it's them. Those two really helped with the concept of the song."
So is this new album your big push in the US?
"Yeah, I mean, I would say it's just an album I'm willing to give to the US. I'm not ever trying to put pressure on any country because then I'll just drive myself crazy. I think music will thrive where it wants to. If I think about it too much - the States and all that - I'll start getting obsessed with it."
We'd personally find it quite intimidating having Jay Z as a boss - do you still get nervous when you play him new music?
"Yeah, all the time, I mean, it's Jay-Z! I'll never forget that it's also Jay Z, the guy with a heart who cares about his label and his artists. Obviously it's criticism that you don't want to hear, but need to hear, so you can fix it."
What's the best piece of advice he's given you?
"Don't get lost in the hype."
The Roc Nation roster seems like a family - Rihanna and Shakira have teamed up, Kylie seems to be enjoying her move there, and obviously yourself and Calvin Harris...
"When you have everyone under one roof, it's the greatest, most weirdest collection. A Roc Nation album would be cool… We'll see. There's so much talent around at the label, but it's so good we get a chance to be ourselves. Nobody gets in anyone's space and no-one tries to step on anybody's toes."
A new tour will follow the album later in the year. How much involvement in the planning process do you have?
"I'm so involved with production - it's a part of me! I re-watched In Bed With Madonna recently - I haven't seen it for ages - and literally I'm so inspired by her work ethic and how she's involved with everything. I've always been like that, but not to that extent."
So can we expect another single in the summer and the new album just after that?
"Yeah, another single - I want to try and put out as many songs as I possibly can. I'm looking to release the album at the back end of summer - September time - just in time for the tour. I just want to release lots of songs!"
Is the album finished and ready to go?
"The album is never finished until it's on the shelves! There's always something to fix, but it's close."
You strike us as one of those artists who gives their label a high blood pressure by taking it right down to the wire...
"Yeah, very much. Right down to like, 'No Rita, seriously now you have to put it in production.' 'Really, right now?' 'Yeah, you have to take it to the factory.' That's when the album will be done."
Rita Ora's new single 'I Will Never Let You Down' will be released in the UK on May 11.