Giddy Up

Beyoncé’s switching genres and fans don’t know how to feel

The Super Bowl has never really been about football. It’s about a killer halftime show, tons of celebrity sightings, and shenanigans during the commercial breaks. This year’s Super Bowl was no exception, and the night’s big winner wasn’t either of the teams on the field, but Beyoncé. The music superstar stole the show, starring in a commercial for Verizon with a wild twist ending. 

The commercial saw Beyoncé testing a number of methods to break the internet, including making her own version of Barbie (called BarBey) and performing in outer space. When all else failed, she went back to basics, ending the ad by saying, “Drop the new music.”

Fans rushed to streaming services to see if she was being serious — and indeed she was. Beyoncé had released two new singles, “Texas Hold ‘Em” and “16 Carriages,” and updated her socials with an earth-shaking announcement: her next album is coming on March 29.

Even more shocking than the surprise music drop, though, was the content of those new songs. They’re a far cry from the pop, R&B, and most recently, house music of Beyoncé’s past eras. On the contrary, Renaissance‘s Act II is shaping up to be pure, unadulterated country.

Fans are split on this genre switch-up. Beyoncé has dipped her toes into country before, particularly on the Lemonade track “Daddy Lessons,” and for fans who already love country music, a whole album of songs in that style sounds like a dream come true.

Others aren’t as sold on the idea of a country-fied Beyoncé. It’s a controversial genre, but if anyone can pull it off, it’s Queen Bey, so the Hive is getting in the country spirit no matter what. 

A country album also opens the door for some killer collabs. Can you imagine the power of a Kacey Musgraves or Dolly Parton feature?

Beyoncé’s upcoming album — for now only known as Act II — also confirms that her 2022 Renaissance was indeed the first of a set of three albums. Renaissance was house music, and Act II is country, so what does that leave for Act III? Fan theories are flying, but most people are expecting a pivot to rock music to end the trilogy. It would complete the theme of reclaiming traditionally Black music genres: first house, now country, then rock. (Plus, a whole album of Beyoncé rocking out would be incredibly iconic.)

Act II, whatever its real title may be, will be out on March 29. Until then, we’ll put on our cowboy boots and keep the first two singles on repeat.

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