“Beyonce” allows the superstar to talk directly with her fans
Who in their right mind would release a musical project without promotion? That’s synonymous with death, is it not? The genesis of any idea, product, or service to be utilized or consumed by the masses has to have some sort of blueprint to make the consumer aware of it. The definition of “brand” is “ a trademark or distinctive name identifying a product or a manufacturer.”
If there is one name in the music business that can shock the world, by dropping an entire album complete with music videos for each song without promotion—and pull off this Houdini-esque feat—it would be that of the queen: Beyonce.
If you look closely at 2013, Queen B has really been a busy bee. She constantly toured the UK and the US, released an HBO documentary she executive produced and directed, secretly recorded this album, covertly shot videos for each song, and strategically set the perfect climate for her fans to anticipate new music.
From the start of her solo career, with each of her albums, Beyonce has always set her her fans up with an air of anticipation so palpable it makes the hair on the back of your neck stand up. This is the magic of Beyonce Giselle Knowles, unquestionably the Queen of Pop. The break-up of the Grammy Award-winning group Destiny’s Child was the catalyst of Beyonce’s mystique. The group never actually said that they were breaking up, instead telling the world, “No matter what happens, we will always love each other as friends and sisters and will always support each other as artists.”
We all know that was industry jargon. Beyonce was dripping with the “it” factor and the Bey machine was too big to ignore—sorry, Michelle and Kelly.
My first encounter with Destiny’s Child was in New Orleans at an industry event and included the original crew; Beyonce, Kelly, Latoya Luckett and LaTavia Roberson. I was waiting around for the next showcase to start when I heard four beautiful women (that I would later realize were children), harmonizing in the corner of the lobby. The first one I noticed was Beyonce—not because she was the most attractive but because she was obviously the one in charge. She was confidently instructing the others on what to do about pitch, who was too loud or too soft, and whether or not the group sounded up to par. All of this I noticed at a glance, not knowing that they would become one of the most successful female groups of our time. (Here’s a fun fact: Beyonce’s father Matthew Knowles is a former basketball Moc and Beyonce has been to Chattanooga a few times as a child and has admitted to being a lover of Krystals. Who knew?)
“Beyonce” was released on iTunes alongside 17 videos that shocked the world. She once said, “I see music. It’s more than just what I hear. When I’m connected to something, I immediately see a visual or a series of images that are tied to a feeling or an emotion, a memory from my childhood, thoughts about life, my dreams or my fantasies. And they’re all connected to the music.” It’s obvious she always had something up her sleeve but in today’s world of music piracy, illegal downloads, and music-sharing, keeping things under wraps is paramount.
Bey says that she was bored with the conventional way music is released and that she wanted to be able to talk directly with her fans. So what exactly is the theme of this latest musical exploit? The answer is empowerment. She once asked the question who runs the world, and answered: GIRLS!!! Although she stops short of calling herself a feminist, Beyonce is an advocate for women’s rights and uses her celebrity status to inform the world that a change is needed. Beyonce lent her voice to The Shriver Report with a spectacular essay proclaiming that “gender equality is a myth.” She states that “the average working woman earns only 77 percent of what the average working man makes. But unless women and men both say this is unacceptable, things will not change.”
Maybe Beyonce has read “War Talk” by Arundhati Roy, which states: “Our strategy should be not only to confront empire, but to lay siege to it. To deprive it of oxygen. To shame it. To mock it. With our art, our music, our literature, our stubbornness, our joy, our brilliance, our sheer relentlessness—and our ability to tell our own stories. Stories that are different from the ones we’re being brainwashed to believe. The corporate revolution will collapse if we refuse to buy what they are selling—their ideas, their version of history, their wars, their weapons, their notion of inevitability. Remember this: We be many and they be few. They need us more than we need them. Another world is not only possible, she is on her way. On a quiet day, I can hear her breathing.”
Not only is she breathing, but she has the voice of an angel. She is married to one of the most powerful men in the music industry and she is “Drunk In Love” with him, their daughter Blue Ivy, and the life that they are living.