Beyoncé's road to pop culture royalty
Queen B celebrates her 41st birthday on September 4th
Beyoncé is likely the most well-known singer around the world, and she's one of the few stars who has achieved this legacy through an almost unbelievably clean, uphill trajectory. It seems with each project or performance she outdoes herself, and at this point she really is her only competition at the top. Even in 2021 she broke the record for the most Grammys won by any female artist, as well as any singer ever, with a whopping 28 awards to her name. And she's not even close to being done.
To celebrate her ongoing success, why not read some interesting facts about Beyoncé's story so far? From her style inspiration to her favorite film, once you're done here you may as well be a part of the Beyhive (if you aren't already).
Music for movies
In her album hiatus, Bey decided to lend her talents to the film industry after a screening of the inspiring 2021 Will Smith movie, 'King Richard.' Smith stars as Richard Williams, the father of star tennis players Venus and Serena Williams. It tells the story of their unusual start in the world of tennis. Beyoncé reportedly offered to provide a song for the soundtrack after watching the movie, and released the single 'Be Alive.' The empowering anthem is the perfect match for a movie that documents the strength of two young girls finding success in a world that was slow to accept them. “The marriage of a movie and a song is a kind of magic that’s unmatched in entertainment,” Smith said in an interview. “I was so happy when Beyoncé called.”
Say her name, say her name
Her full name is Beyoncé Giselle Knowles Carter. Her name was given to her as an homage to her mother's maiden name, Beyoncé.
She is of African, French, and Native American descent.
At seven years old, she won a singing competition at school for her performance of 'Imagine' by John Lennon.
Beyoncé is a childhood friend of Alicia Keys. The singers have known each other since they were 14, and they partnered up for the song 'Put it in a Love Song.'
Future members of Destiny's Child, Kelly Rowland and Knowles (pictured here with later Destiny's Child addition Michelle Williams) met at eight-years-old after being put into the R&B girl group Girl's Tyme.
Destiny's Child was formed in 1996. They named the group after a passage from the Book of Isaiah. Beyoncé's father reportedly used to make the girls sing while running in order to build their stamina.
Beyoncé suffered from depression for two years, reportedly due to the fact that the public blamed her for the problems within the group.
Her mother is a fashion designer named Tina Knowles. Her father is a talent manager named Mathew Knowles.
Her mother designed most of the outfits for Destiny's Child.
Beyoncé and Solange went to therapy as children so there would be no hard feelings between them after Beyoncé's early success, this according to Elle.
Bey's favorite films are 'A Star Is Born' and 'Sparkle.' She was even tied to the remake of 'A Star Is Born.'
Her fashion icon is British model Kate Moss.
'Dangerously in Love'
The gem in the beginning of her solo career, the album 'Dangerously in Love' won five Grammys.
Sasha Fierce was the alter ego that Beyoncé created in 2003 to help her with her stage fright. In 2010, she told the magazine Allure that she didn't feel like she needed an alter ego to perform anymore.
The most beautiful
In September 2010, she was named the most beautiful woman in the world by People magazine.
She walked out of a photo shoot with David LaChapelle after he asked her to pose naked and covered in honey.
She and rapper Jay-Z started dating in 2000, but it wasn't until April 4, 2008 that the two married. Talk about some buildup!
The couple's first daughter, Blue Ivy Carter, was born on January 7, 2012.
Blue Ivy is the youngest person to enter the Billboard charts. Her cries appeared on her dad's song, 'Glory.' 'Glory' — The song also revealed that Beyoncé suffered a miscarriage before getting pregnant with Blue.
In February 2017, Beyoncé announced her second pregnancy, and in June the singer gave birth to twins Sir and Rumi.
The pop icon returned in 2019 with 'Homecoming,' which was a Netflix film and a surprise live album to boot. 'Homecoming' recaps B's incredible headline performance at Coachella 2018, one that made headlines around the world.
Beyoncé has various other secondary businesses. She created a clothing line called House of Deréon with her mother. The name of the brand came from her grandmother's name, Agnes Dereon. She also released various fragrance lines that are sold all over the world.
Beyoncé is obviously a woman of many talents, and she not only shines on the stage, but on the silver screen as well! Check out some of the films that the pop diva has starred in.
'Cadillac Records' — The film directed by Darnell Martin tells the history of Chess Records, the record label belonging to Leonard Chess (Adrien Brody) from the '50s and '60s. Beyoncé plays Etta James.
'Carmen: A Hip Hopera' — This was her first film, this back in 2001. Produced by MTV (for TV) and directed by Robert Townsend, the film is a mixture of a drama and a musical. It tells the story of Carmen Brown (Beyoncé), an aspiring actor who encounters new problems in her life after meeting police officer Sgt. Hill (Mekhi Phifer).
'Dreamgirls' — Of all the films Bey's participated in, this one garnered the most critical acclaim. The film tells the story of the group The Dreamettes, who were very successful in the '60s and '70s, and discusses the difficulties of show business. Beyoncé got her first nomination for a Golden Globe for Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy for this role.
'Obsessed' — The thriller directed by Steve Shill tells the story of Derek Charles (Idris Elba), a financial consultant married to Sharon (Beyoncé). He has the perfect life until he gets involved with Lisa (Ali Larter), who is capable of ruining everything for Derek.
'Pink Panther' — In the film, Beyoncé plays Xania, the girlfriend of the French soccer coach who is found dead at a game. The movie focuses on the search for the Pink Panther, a diamond that belonged to the coach.
'Austin Powers in Goldmember' (2002) was Bey's first big movie. She had a major role in the comedy as Foxxy Cleopatra.
'The Fighting Temptations' — She starred opposite Cuba Gooding Jr. in this 2003 flick.
'The Lion King' — A queen amongst us mere mortals, she voiced a future queen, Nala, in the 2019 adaptation of Disney's 'The Lion King.'
‘Black Is King’ — In 2020, she released a visual album called 'Black Is King,' based on the music off of 'The Lion King: The Gift,' Bey’s album which was inspired by Disney’s 2019 adaptation of 'The Lion King,' which starred Beyoncé as the voice of Nala. The artist's production company calls 'Black Is King' a «celebratory memoir for the world on the black experience.”
Record for most Grammys won by any female artist and any singer ever
Beyoncé went into the 2021 Grammys with nine nominations, the most of any artist for the night, and she left after breaking the record for the most Grammys won by any female artist, as well as any singer ever, with a whopping 28 awards to her name. She started her streak alongside her nine-year-old daughter Blue Ivy Carter as they won Best Music Video for 'Brown Skin Girl.' Then Beyoncé and fellow Houston native Megan Thee Stallion made history as the first pair of women to ever win Best Rap Performance with the remix of Megan Thee Stallion's 'Savage,' which also earned Best Rap Song. Then finally it was Beyoncé's win for Best R&B Performance for 'Black Parade' that cemented her, yet again, in history.
Beyoncé had us waiting since 2016's 'Lemonade' for the arrival of her seventh solo album. 'Renaissance' was released on July 29 to rave reviews. The joyful maximalist album is a celebration of her power as an artist and as a woman, while also paying tribute to the queer community that uplifts and inspires her, making several references to her „Uncle Johnny“ who died during the AIDS crisis. Critics have described it as a breathtaking tour de force.
A week before the album dropped, Beyoncé released the first single 'Break My Soul.' The house music hit samples Robin S's 1993 hit 'Show Me Love' and Big Freedia's 'Explode.' Within a couple of weeks of its release, 'Break My Soul' has helped Beyoncé to break yet another record. She has become the first woman in music history to have 20 top 10 titles on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. Only two other artists have achieved this milestone; Paul McCartney and Michael Jackson. Her titles include four No. 1s as a member of Destiny's Child and seven No. 1s as a solo artist.
Fashion flashback: Beyoncé's evolving style
From red-carpet „freakum“ dresses to on-stage showstoppers
Queen Bey has been killing it in the fashion game for years.
Click through the gallery for a peek at some of her best and most iconic style looks throughout her career.
Beyoncé Celebrates Birthday With Friends at Fantastic Disco
Beyoncé is known for throwing fantastic birthday parties; this year was no exception. Friends and family celebrate the icon’s birthday dressed in their best disco fits.
Our favorite Virgo celebrated her forty-first birthday over the weekend, and it was likely the best party of the year. On September 11, friends and family joined Beyoncé and her husband Jay-Z at a beautiful mansion in Bel-Air, where they hosted a disco-themed party for the multi-talented artist. The guest list featured many reputable artists such as Drake, Lizzo, Adele, Zendaya, Vanessa Bryant, Micheal B. Jordan, Ciara, Kerry Washington, and more. It’s fair to say that guests did not disappoint when it came to their outfits.
There’s no question, this night was certainly one to remember. Drake came through wearing a burgundy velvet tracksuit, but what captivated viewers online were his white custom socks that read: “Beyoncé’s forty-first Birthday Extravaganza.” Jazmine Sullivan lit up the room wearing a shimmering black bodysuit. In an Instagram post, the singer wrote, “Celebrating the queen and boo @iamdavewatson bday! One thing I LOVESSS is a Virgo!”
Sweatsuits, afros, fur coats, glitter, and sequined glam were just a few styles prominent amongst the guests. The Little Mermaid star Halle Bailey took to Instagram to show off her matching Adidas fit alongside American-rapper DDG. Longtime friend and former Destiny’s Child groupmate Kelly Rowland joined in on the fun, sharing photos online from the event where she wore a sparkly silver two-piece fringed shorts set, pairing it with black and white Nikes.
Euphoria star, Zendaya switched things up and was seen arriving at the party wearing a short blonde wig. Meanwhile, inside the party, “Wild Side” singer Normani and Natalia Bryant were flicking it up at Bey’s infamous photo booth. Lizzo wore a beautiful red Gucci corset with a matching leather skirt and gold accessories. The looks were simply unmatched.
This isn’t the first time Queen Bey has thrown one of her famous themed parties this year. Last month, she hosted a secret “Club Renaissance” themed party in New York to celebrate the release of her seventh studio album, Renaissance. Guests were challenged to dress in their best funkiest drip, and again they showed up and showed out.
If anyone knows how to throw a great party, it’s Beyoncé. What was your favorite look from the night?