All Articles Tagged "beyonce"

Mini Formation: Would You Host A Beyonce Party For Your Daughter?

May 31st, 2016 - By Allyson Leak
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Instagram: KingKeraun

Instagram: KingKeraun

There is no doubt that Beyonce has inspired not only hard core BeyHive fans but many people around the globe with her voice, lyrics, dance moves, entrepreneurial ventures, and philanthropic initiatives.

But now she is inspiring little girls to have awesome girl power birthday parties. According to Instagram star @Kingkeraun, his three-year old daughter named Raegan didn’t want to settle for a typical party. Houston based photographer @bphotography713 shot the photo and the toddler had a Beyoncé-themed soiree.

 

The official name for the party was “Slay with Rae” and Raegan and her toddler crew were dressed in “Formation”-style black and gold leggings, tank tops, and tutus. They had manis and pedis from a mobile spa and posed for adorable pics.

The caption for the shot read: “Raegans formation 3rd birthday party #RaeYonce ️️ picture by @bphotography713 of my daughter and her cousins , For her 3rd birthday we decided to give her a party called ” slay with Rae : a formation party since she love Beyoncé ! where her and her cousins get their nails and toes done by a mobile spa and then dress up like Beyoncé and hit the runway!”

Here are the steps to having a Beyonce party “Formation” Girl Power Party…

Step 1-Attire

The main outfit colors from Beyonce’s Formation tour seem to be black, red, and white with accents of gold. Have the girls dress in any of these colors but add gold accents. You can add a gold tutu, gold bracelets, headbands, or gold glitter tights.

Step 2-Pampering

Have a pampering session. You can have a mobile pampering service come in and cater to the little ones. A less expensive option is for the moms to do the mani/pedi session. Just gather the girls favorite polish colors, plastic tubs for soaking hands and feet with warm soapy water, and nail files and you are set to go.

Step 3-Games

Play girl empowerment games. You could have leopard print index cards with positive words on the back and the girls can name a woman they know that fits that word. They can also talk about what they want to be when they grow up and the adult leading the party can talk to them about why girls and women can achieve anything they put their mind to.

Step 4-Snacks

Having healthy yummy snacks is another great option for an empowerment party. It teaches the girls that the keys to success are not just in what you say but what you do. And that a healthy body leads to a healthy mind and that also helps you achieve your dreams.

Step 5- Photoshoot

What would a Beyonce-inspired party be without memorable photos? The parents and girls can design a background for the photoshoot. On a very large piece of paper that goes from ceiling to floor you could design it with a collage of Beyonce pictures and positive words written in capital letters along with the girls names. And adding glitter and sequins will make it stand out. Have the girls pose together and also take individual shots. After the party’s over, print the pics and mail to each girl for a keepsake.

Jay Z Finally Responds To Lemonade With New Rap, And It’s Pretty Underwhelming

May 25th, 2016 - By Victoria Uwumarogie
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Credit: Abel Fermin/WENN.com

Credit: Abel Fermin/WENN.com

Lemonade has been out for a month now, and while everyone spent their time trying to find “Becky with the good hair,” Jay Z was out here trying to find the right way to respond to it all. And while no reply probably would have been the best way to go, there was talk of an entire response album, and there have even been rumors about a possible joint album with Beyoncé. But Jay decided to say a little something in the new remix for Fat Joe, Remy Ma and French Montana’s hit song, “All The Way Up.” To be honest, it was kind of underwhelming. But then again, the whole remix was pretty flat for me.

In his verse, the rapper said, “You know you made it when the fact your marriage made it is worth millions/Lemonade is a popular drink and it still is/Survival of the littest/Ni–as who really up versus ni–as up in your business.”

There was also a line near the end of his verse where Jay Z mentioned Prince and the late icon’s partnership with his streaming company, Tidal.

“Prince left his masters where they safe and sound/We never gonna let the elevator take him down.”

That is, of course, a reference to Prince’s “Let’s Go Crazy” and the “Are we going to let the elevator bring us down?” line. But it could also be in reference to the 2014 elevator incident between Jay and Solange Knowles. You never know. Either way, clever wordplay there.

You can check out the song exclusively on Tidal, and images of the reunited and it feels so good couple out on a dinner date in NYC last night below.

Beyonce and Jay Z

Splash News

Beyonce and Jay Z

Splash News

Beyonce and Jay Z

Splash News

Thoughts on his verse?

Was This Designer Wrong For Having White Models Walk To “Formation” At Australia Fashion Week?

May 21st, 2016 - By Ashley Monaé
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@BellaHadid closes the @MishaCollection show 🔥 #IMGStars #MBFWA #IMGModelsAustralia

A video posted by IMGmodels (@imgmodels) on

At this point, the ongoing conversation regarding the lack of diversity in the fashion world has unfortunately become pretty much commonplace. And the discussion just hit yet another fever pitch when the finale of Australian fashion brand Misha’s Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia show went viral.

So, what could be so cringe-worthy, you ask? The uproar came when IMG modeling agency posted a video of the shows finale, in which the 100% white model lineup, fronted by Bella Hadid, strutted down the runway to Beyonce’s “Formation” — not a single black or brown soul in sight. Of course with “Formation” being such a heralded song that narrated the undeniable magic a black woman possesses, people didn’t take too kindly to the fact that the song’s message wasn’t relayed in the color of models. But instead of doing a hostile-like takeover and commenting on IMG’s Instagram account with an overwhelming amount of bee and lemon emojis, an out-pour of serious concern followed.

“This song is an ode to powerful black women around the world, so where are the black women??” asked one user.

“This is like playing ‘Fight the Power’ at a Donald Trump rally,” someone added.

“No one would care if it were some other Beyonce song. But a song that is specifically celebrating black culture and features was a shady and strange choice. A song that is proudly celebrating afros, broad noses, Creole and Black Southern heritage… with all white models? That is bogus,” another chimed in.

“Disgusted. I’m not black but I know ‘Formation’ is a black anthem celebrating Southern American black culture. It’s not for non-black people to use and certainly not in a walk featuring no black models at all,” rounded out the comments.

While all the comments hit the nail on the head, an incident as such isn’t too far fetched. According to the Fashion Spot, the models who walked the fall 2016 runways(including New York, London, Milan, and Paris) were 75.25% white — a minor improvement from the previous season, when they were 77.6% white.

Personally, I, too, was disgusted by the footage. I won’t say that “Formation” is a song reserved for blacks only, but put some respect on our name! The song itself is fiery, upbeat, and surely will make anyone feel the spirit and begin to move, but the fact that not one single model of color owned the catwalk was sickening. Was Naomi booked? What about Joan Smalls? Jourdan Dunn? Alek Wek? Chanel Iman? Jessica White? Leomie Anderson? Liya Kebede? Sessilee Lopez? Selita Ebanks? Ajak Deng? Ubah Hassan? Georgie Badiel? Arlenis Sosa? I could literally continue but you get the point. If they paid Ms. Hadid $400,000 just move her two feet to “Formation,” why not hire one of the aforementioned?

This topic surely goes beyond “Formation,” with the lack of diversity at its core, but the longstanding problem of sensitivity from designers has yet to be handled.

What are your thoughts on this situation?

On Beyoncé, Mathew Knowles, And Forgiving Our Fathers For The Way They Treat Our Mothers

May 20th, 2016 - By Victoria Uwumarogie
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Houston Concert proud dad!!!!

A photo posted by Tina Knowles (@mstinalawson) on

 

What some people probably don’t realize is that you can have daddy issues even if you have father who has always had a consistent and loving presence in your life.

According to the Urban Dictionary, which has never been known for its tact, “Whenever a female has a f–ked up relationship with her father, or absence of a father figure during her childhood, it tends to spill into any adult relationship they embark on, usually to the chagrin of any poor male in their life.”

But in reality, you can have daddy issues due not necessarily to the relationship you have with your father, but rather, because of the relationship your father has had with your mother.

I got to thinking about all this as I watched people’s very surprised reaction to Beyoncé’s mother, Tina Knowles, posting a picture of the singer with Mathew Knowles during a recent tour stop. The caption read, “Houston Concert proud dad!!!!” as Bey smiled in the camera, hugged up close to Mathew. Tina also shared a picture of Solange and Juelz posing with Mathew in Houston. And while some people commented about the fact that Mathew is a “trifling idiot,” as someone succinctly but powerfully pointed out on Tina’s page, “that’s still their father.”

And that’s true. We know about Mathew’s questionable character. We know about the children he brought into the world and the women who put them in the spotlight to obtain past-due child support. We know that according to court papers filed by Mathew, he was fired as Beyoncé’s manager amid claims that he “had taken funds that he was not entitled to,” which he said was false but painted as true by Live Nation Entertainment. And we know he’s messy. How many times has he done an interview talking about Beyoncé and Jay Z? How many times has he used whatever is going on with them to promote whatever he has going on? But again, “that’s still their father.”

And most importantly, we know that he really hurt Tina. As she said in a recent interview about Beyonce’s Lemonade album and being supported by her daughters after being cheated on by Mathew, “I remember my first little pity party and I called them crying and you know, they all came,” she said. “We had a slumber party, we watched old movies all night and ate ice cream–it was very healing.” Her daughters have been by her side as she went through the pain of infidelity, as she made the decision to leave her husband, and as she found new love again with actor Richard Lawson. Their father? Well, he wasn’t so much in the picture. He wasn’t even present at Solange’s wedding. For so long, it seemed that Mathew, who seemed to have made one too many mistakes, was going to stay on the outs. But again, “that’s still their father.”

The reality is that despite the pain our fathers may put our mothers through, that is not your pain to carry, nor should it destroy the relationship you have with your father. Sure, it probably changes the way you look at him as a partner and a man, but if he still wants to continue having a healthy relationship with you, I would urge you to allow it to happen. And mothers like Tina, despite their hurtful experiences, should encourage that. Because in her case, she’s fully moved on. And more importantly, He’s still her children’s father.

My own father hasn’t been a good husband. Even he will admit that. He’s done many things that I had to watch my mother deal with, even as a young child. And even as an adult, I’ve found myself shouting at them mid-argument in the hopes that they would one day finally stop quarreling. They’ve been doing so as far back as I can remember. His behavior was one of the reasons I told myself years ago that I wouldn’t even date a Nigerian man (but I’m marrying one so…God had other plans). He even told my sister that he wouldn’t recommend us falling in love with someone like him. And despite my mother’s consistent complaints about him and the things he’s done, which can at times be disheartening to hear, I couldn’t quit him if I tried. My father is an incredibly strong man who has dealt with a lot, who has persevered, and as long as I’ve been in this world, has done a great deal for his children. As his child, call me crazy, but I can support my mother while also loving my father. More than anything, I’ve learned from their relationship what I do and don’t want, and will and won’t stand in my own marriage. I won’t go to bed angry. I won’t bottle up my feelings. And I will always make my voice heard. But at the end of the day, I can’t let the things my parents go through in their relationship (which I honestly think should have ended years ago) hamper my relationship with him. After all, he’s still my father.

I say all that to say that in a time when so many people are so used to cutting even family off in the hopes of self-preservation, we need to rethink certain decisions based on the fact that when we don’t forgive, we don’t truly heal. I mean, if stars like Beyoncé and Solange, who’ve watched their father act a damn donkey on the public stage can forgive and move forward, it may be possible for the rest of us with our own set of daddy issues to open our hearts and do the same. I truly believe that there are some people who are toxic for your life, and therefore, they deserve to be alienated from it. However, in terms of basing your relationship with your father on the relationship he has had with your mother, I would say that’s not really your business. Plus, you only know so much of the story anyway. And while the character of a person and the choices they make do matter, we’re not talking about a presidential candidate you’re being encouraged to vote for. That’s still your father.

At the end of the day, I say, you only get one father. And when he’s gone, he’s gone. Therefore, if you’re going through something with him, know that if he’s ever been good to you, ever been there for you, and ever provided you with love and support, even if you can’t welcome him fully back into your life, it’s worth it to forgive him. That’s still your father.

Why We Need More Black Girl Anthems

May 20th, 2016 - By Erica R. Williams
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Young black girl/woman in college listening to headphones/music, Shutterstock

Shutterstock

Nearly a month after dropping a surprise album, people of all races, backgrounds, and socioeconomic classes are still asking for more Lemonade. Why? Well, because it’s probably Beyoncé’s best work. But aside from the infectious hooks, jaw-dropping visuals, and FU given to cheating men, there is a deeper message in Beyoncé’s aesthetic album. This message affects one group in particular: Black women. Beyoncé reminded us (by way of Malcolm X) that “The most disrespected person in America is the Black woman. The most unprotected person in America is the Black woman. The most neglected person in America is the Black woman.” And though the civil rights leader said this more than 50 years ago, we needed someone, in the present day, of Beyoncé’s status and stature, to reiterate this sentiment, which still holds true today. We need anthems like “Formation” to remind us that yes, being a Black girl isn’t easy, but there is a power, also known as Black girl magic, in who we are.

Some may argue that songs won’t change the way Black women are treated or perceived in society, but music is a powerful weapon. And while it may not directly revamp the way everyone feels about us, it can help alter the way we feel about ourselves and other Black women. This, in turn, can indirectly initiate change.

It’s a fact that music affects moods, and according to researchers, it even affects the way people perceive the world. Black women have more than enough songs (most times delivered by Black men) that present us in a negative light. Either we’re bitter b—hes who are only good for pleasing a man sexually or we’re not good enough because we don’t fit a certain look or way of being. There aren’t enough songs reminding us of our beauty and ‘badass-ness’; and the ones that are out there, unfortunately, don’t make it to the mainstream airwaves. So when a star of Beyoncé’s caliber makes a visual album that highlights the strength and beauty of Black women, I can only be excited, and you should be too.

Nonetheless, not everyone is buying into Beyoncé’s delivery. Author and feminist bell hooks penned an essay on her website that accuses the pop singer of doing exactly what we are trying to do away with. Though she praises the album for creativity and “multidimensional images of Black female life,” she also says, “much of the album stays within a conventional stereotypical framework where the Black woman is always a victim.”

While Hooks is a respected feminist in her own right, we cannot pretend that Black women don’t usually end up with the short end of the stick. Acknowledging this doesn’t make us victims, but rather, we can relish in the fact that we usually overcome. And look good doing it. This is why songs like the ones Beyoncé is creating now are what we need more of. And while there are plenty of other Black artists who have been offering similar messages far longer than Bey (think Ledisi, Queen Latifah, Alicia Keys, India Arie, etc.), we still need those with the most power and influence as mainstream artists to make a concentrated effort to speak up for Black women.

Is Beyoncé’s Ivy Park Being Created By Overworked And Underpaid Sweatshop Workers?

May 16th, 2016 - By Victoria Uwumarogie
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ivy-park

“Come again? You say that Ivy Park is made in sweatshops?”

That’s what everyone has been asking today after British publication The Sun published a piece stating that the individuals producing the popular athleisure line are out here working up to 60 hours a day for a measly $6.17 each day. Sounds like a ridiculous claim. However, it’s always interesting when anyone associated with Beyoncé (aside from anyone on her father’s side…) make statements about rumors, which is something they don’t usually entertain.

So basically, the piece, published on Sunday, stated that the workers putting together the empowering clothing are actually being treated like cattle by those behind Topshop, including fashion businessman Sir Philip Green. He is the chairman of the Arcadia Group, a retail company that includes the famous British retailer. As written in it, “The workers, mostly young women from poor rural villages, can only afford to live in boarding houses and work more than 60 hours a week to make ends meet.”

And as one machinist told the tabloid, “When they talk about women and empowerment this is just for the foreigners. They want the foreigners to think everything is OK.”

According to WWD.com, the brand responded to the allegations about the manufacturing process with a statement that said, “Ivy Park has a rigorous ethical trading program. We are proud of our sustained efforts in terms of factory inspections and audits, and our teams worldwide work very closely with our suppliers and their factories to ensure compliance.”

But, as WWD pointed out, with a minimum daily wage of $2.68 (which is 400 rupees in Sri Lanka), Ivy Park workers are actually making “more than twice” most people. And the company who supplies the facility where manufacturing takes place, MAS, currently works with or has worked with Lululemon, Nike, Patagonia and many other popular companies. So it makes you wonder why there is such a heated investigation by the line that Beyoncé is the face and creator of when we’re all out here wearing Nikes and not feeling any type of way.

“According to an industry source, the MAS facilities were fully vetted by members of the Ivy Park team before production began, and that all the factories that make Ivy Park were ‘painstakingly’ chosen. Workers are paid above minimum wage in countries where the clothes are made,” a source stated to WWD.

The criticism of Topshop comes as Green is investigated for possible business impropriety due to the struggles of his former business BHS. So, I guess, those connected to the businesses he has or was affiliated with are being investigated and scrutinized too. But as for the hopes and goals of the line, it’s all supposed to be about uplifting women.

When speaking on Ivy Parker, stated that “My goal with Ivy Park is to push the boundaries of ­athletic wear and to support and inspire women who understand that beauty is more than your physical appearance. True beauty is in the health of our minds, hearts and bodies.”

“She continued, “I know that when I feel physically strong, I am mentally strong and I wanted to create a brand that made other women feel the same way.”

There’s Now A Dance Class Dedicated To Beyoncé’s ‘Lemonade’ Album

May 15th, 2016 - By Ashley Monaé
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Photo Credit: Tidal

Photo Credit: Tidal

If you’re member of the Beyhive and can’t get enough of Beyoncé’s new Lemonade album, this dance class is definitely for you.

There’s no secret that for the past decade dance classes have popped up across the globe in honor of the the pop and R&b diva. Stans are serious when it comes to getting their Sasha Fierce on and learning every two-step from the star’s most popular music videos. But with the surprise release of her sixth studio album, a new dance class has hit the scene.

New York City’s DivaDance is actually offering a Lemonade class every Tuesday (7:15pm) until June 10. Each week, for 45 minutes, ladies (and gents!) sweat it out, work it out, and slay it out to a different song from the 12-track LP. InStyle’s Claire Stern recently took the class, saying:

The room was packed with women ready to slay. (Literally. Everyone wore T-shirts emblazoned with “Slaying Is My Cardio.”) After assuming our position on the dance floor, we were instructed by DivaDance’s peppy blonde founder/instructor Jami Stigliano to turn to the person standing next to us and ask them what type of hot sauce was in their bag (my neighbor, a self-professed member of the Beyhive, responded “swag”). Next, we began with a series of warm-ups, which consisted mostly of strutting and posing. Then we grouped into small clusters (“squads”) and started learning the choreography from the actual video.

Stigliano kindly broke down the beginning of the dance into three parts so it was easier to process. We’d repeat each section at least three times, adding bits until we had the first minute of the song down pat. If a move was too difficult to pull off, she was happy to modify it. The chief goal, she said, was to have fun. “If you’re not having a good time, you’re doing something wrong.”

This definitely sounds like a fun way to decompress with your friends after a long day at work. DivaDance also has locations in Austin and San Francisco that may offer the same class. Find out more here.

 

Did Y’all See? Lauryn’s Energy Is Off And Miss. Tina Talks Lemonade

May 13th, 2016 - By Veronica Wells
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This week on Did Y’all See? the editors are talking about Lauryn Hill consistently showing up late for performances and the apology she issued in response to a disgruntled fan. Then the ladies shared their thoughts on the teens charged in the death of Amy Joyner-Francis. There was a game of “Who’d You Rather?” between “Underground” stars Aldis Hodge and Alano Miller. Find out what the MN editors had to say about Mama Tina’s thoughts on Lemonade and see who they shouted out for this week’s “We See You!”

Check it all out in the video above.

Beyoncé Is On A Path To Renewal In Her Own Marriage: Tina Knowles-Lawson On Lemonade

May 11th, 2016 - By Veronica Wells
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Source: ABC 13

Source: ABC 13

Beyoncé’s Lemonade caused such waves in the ocean that is pop culture, it makes sense that people want several voices and personalities to weigh in on the work. Particularly because it was so different from anything Beyoncé has done before and seemed to expose some secrets about her marriage.

There have been plenty of theories, takeaways and think pieces. But when Tina Knowles-Lawson, the woman who birthed Beyoncé offers her take on the work, we have to listen.

In a recent interview with Houston’s ABC 13, Miss. Tina offered this bit of insight.

“People make it all about the cheating and betrayal, and yes, that’s a part of it because that is something that you have to heal from. But the overall film, if you really listen to the poetry it is one of hope and redemption and hopefully that can be healing for people…It could be about anyone’s marriage. I think that everybody, at one time or another, has been betrayed, lied to.”

Then she spoke about her own troubled 33-year- marriage with Matthew Knowles and how her daughters were the ones who helped build her up again.

“You know my girls…I remember my first little pitch party. I called them crying and they all came and we had a slumber party. We watched old movies all night and ate ice cream. It was very healing.”

And then perhaps most telling was this paraphrased portion from the interviewer, Melanie Lawson.

“As for her daughter, she says Beyoncé is on a path to renewal in her own marriage. And if they ever hit another rough patch she says they’ve got each other to turn lemons into lemonade.”

In our discussions about Lemonade in the office and among my friends and loved ones, I’ve debated about whether or not Beyoncé was actually singing about her own relationship or if she’d made up the entire thing to tell a compelling story and sell some albums. I always believed it was real. The fact that Jay Z appeared in the video and the references to her life and her family members seemed to give credence to the whole idea. Still, there were others who argued that the Carters, who have been notoriously private about their relationship, would never spill the tea on themselves.

But Miss Tina’s words seem to confirm what most of us believed, no?

I have to be honest, at first I was a little leery about the fact that much of Miss Tina’s interview was edited and paraphrased. I was wondering if they were putting words in her mouth, as the media has been known to do. It’s plausible. Still, Miss Tina’s Instagram page seemed to suggest that the two women had a pretty good rapport.  Not to mention misquoting someone like her would be a huge mistake. Plus, that sentence alone tells us all what we need to know and supports my argument. So, I’m going with it.

Still, as she said, the film and the body of work is about so much more than cheating and spilling tea. It’s about healing. And if I may say so, using the women in your life, your sisters, to do that healing.

Supporting the very prevalent theme of sisterhood we saw in the film, Knowles-Lawson said, “My children are my rock…It’s just been the best gift God could have given me.”

You can check out the full interview in the video below.

Censored But Not Muted: Musicians Who Have Been Boycotted And Banned

May 9th, 2016 - By Nneka Samuel
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Musicians, much like other artists, have been censored by radio stations, universities, libraries and practically any other space you can think of for decades.  Before them, writers who spoke out against atrocities committed by governments the world over had their books burned and banned. Typically, musicians are targeted for censorship because their lyrical content is deemed too risqué or inappropriate.  Or, their music videos are considered sexually suggestive or outright explicit and therefore unfit and unsafe for public consumption.  But censorship and the flat-out banning of songs and videos always seems to work in favor of the artists – earning them more public attention and ultimately more album sales, giving credo to the saying there’s no such thing as bad publicity.  Controversy, whether intended or not, sells, and these artists clearly aren’t afraid to push boundaries or to speak their minds.  Here is but a small list of artists whose music was at one point or another censored, boycotted or banned.