Home > Uncategorized > February 25 – Beyoncé

February 25 – Beyoncé

Yesterday we shined the BHM light on Jessye Norman, one of the greatest female opera sopranos alive or dead, black or otherwise, and who has always been admired for her raw power, her wide vocal range, and the fierce intensity and passion she brings to her work. Today we shift from one African-American diva to another… one who has also been widely recognized for her power, range, intensity and passion. Today we feature Kenny’s favorite: Ms. Beyoncé Knowles.

Beyoncé Giselle Knowles, known professionally as simply Beyoncé, was born on September 4, 1981 in Houston, Texas. From an early age, her parents Mathew and Tina exposed Beyoncé to music, dance and public performance by enrolling her in a number of performing arts magnet schools and signing her up for various singing and dancing competitions. At the age of 8, she earned a spot on the all-girl rap and dance crew, Girl’s Tyme. With the help of her father, who quit his job to manage the act full-time, and her mother, who designed and made all the girls’ costumes, the group performed all over the country, earning praise and fans at every stop.

Four years later, the members changed the name of the group to Destiny’s Child (taken from the Book of Isaiah), and after another four years of touring, signed a recording contract with Columbia Records. From the release of their first self-titled album in February of 1998, Destiny’s Child was wildly successful. In the span of 6 years, they put out 4 albums (Destiny’s Child, The Writing’s on the Wall, Survivor, and Destiny Fulfilled), each of which went Platinum multiple times over in the US, Europe, Australia and elsewhere.

Destiny’s Child would eventually split, with each of the members pursuing individual careers. Beyoncé, long recognized as the primary talent, had no trouble whatsoever continuing along the path of success. Since 2003, she has written, produced and released 3 solo albums (Dangerously in Love, B’Day, and I Am… Sasha Fierce) and has another in the works which she plans to release later this year. Between her group and solo efforts, she has sold over 100 million records, won 16 Grammy Awards, and been certified as the top female artist of the decade and best-selling overall artist of the decade by Billboard and the RIAA, respectively.

In addition to her career in music, Beyoncé has ventured into acting, modeling, and fashion. As if that wasn’t enough, she has also focused much of her time and energy on philanthropic efforts such as the Survivor Foundation (dedicated to helping Hurricane Katrina victims find transitional housing, the Knowles-Rowland Center for Youth (a multi-purpose community out-reach facility in Houston), and food drives such as the ones she executes at each of her tour stops to help Feeding America.

At only 28 years of age, Beyoncé has accomplished a considerable amount personally and professionally. Her tireless work ethic, positivity, elegance, commitment and strength have made her a role model to many, and one can only wonder what else she will do with this amazing life of hers.

thanks for reading,

francis

ps. Tim, don’t you think it would have been helpful if I’d sent this BEFORE yesterday’s Mavs/Lakers game?? =)

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