This past weekend, Beyonce garnered tons of media hoopla with an impressive teaser and premiere of her visual album titled “Lemonade.” Even Youtube joined in the hype by promoting a snippet of a teaser (scroll down for full length video) to entice fans for this past Saturday’s premiere. Fans (aka #TheBeeHive) rushed to their TVs, computer screens, laptops, iPads, smart phones, what-have-you – all impatiently awaiting for her HBO hour long special. FYI: this form of promoting is very reminiscent to Michael Jackson’s video premieres over two decades ago and practically unheard-of now; so kudos to her. During the special, fans were met with 12 full-length music videos, all differing in subject matter: from social political issues, to advocating for the #BLACKGIRLMAGIC movemvent, to female empowerment, to the injustice against young black men in the U.S., to marriage, children, infidelity, its tailspin, self-esteem issues and it’s social/political confines Reactions and opinions stirred were just as diverse as the videos themselves; but, if it were her mission to stir the pot to get tongues wagging, then mission accomplished.
Critics and fans all weighed-in with countless interpretations. Some felt as if she had opened Pandora’s box and let us fans in on her private marital issues, aka the alleged affair. Others were moved by the social political context and visuals of strong black women dressed as deities, mourning the loss of their beloved children. Multiple images during this big block of videos were piggyback riding off of her Super Bowl performance – an unapologetic visual performance embracing the #BlackPantherMovement, touching on self-defense issues that unfortunately plagues our society to this very day (aka #BLACKLIVESMATTER. Beyonce was astute in correlating the loss of a relationship with the loss of an innocent who had all the potential in the world. Being a mom herself and conscious of these highly charged issues, it would have been negligent of her not to have addressed these controversial topics like so many fellow artists in the same category. Artistically, she made a conscious effort to make this album her political outcry for those without a voice and platform.
Other points to touch on is how Beyonce was able to take (her possible) mental anguish and use it to leverage a power move we haven’t seen in over twenty years by a female solo artist. The fact that she was able to rope in the gossip train, push this project into the 3 million mark with regards to views, market this project to HBO, AND, have it streamed by her husband’s company TIDAL – it truly makes for one hell of a savvy business woman. What we’ve witness ladies and gents, is an entrepreneur zeroing-in on the hoopla that already exists on a global scale (with or without her consent) and she’s found a profitable way to turn her art into tons of bank. Beyonce continues to prove that she is not one to rest on her beauty and talent alone – because let’s be honest, that’s truly a dime a dozen in today’s world – but what she has done is harvested the pitfalls of fame and made it a successful business venture. Now that is true #BlackGirlMagic. To check out TIDAL’s current streaming of Beyonce’s masterful “Lemonade,” click here. And, if you’d like to see the teaser and comment below with your thoughts and comments, feel free to do so as well. Also, keep it locked here on Snkrbst.com for all the latest and greatest. And don’t’ forget to #ThinkLikeUs.
By Roz Baron
Editor-in-Chief of Snkrbst.com