September 7, 2013 8 comments
“Are you serious? Like, how can you not like Beyoncé?” she questioned.
“Eh—I just don’t think she’s that talented of an artist,” I replied.
Had I made the mistake of making this comment roughly 20 minutes prior, during Mrs. Carter’s Made in America performance, I might not be here typing this article—not with all of my fingers at least.
I was in the minority. I was one of probably a dozen or so people who attended the show last weekend despite not actually liking Beyoncé. Maybe it’s just me, and maybe my heart is about two sizes too small, but I don’t think her music is that good, nor her voice that impressive (Outside of “Dangerously in Love”). In fact, I find it kind of obnoxious that fans, music writers and the media in general put her on such a high pedestal.
While members of the Beyhive were fainting during “Run the World” (The show opener) and yanking women off the shoulders of people for blocking their view, I spent most of the concert folding and unfolding my arms, while shifting my weight regularly so my legs wouldn’t fall asleep. And when she instructed that just the men sing ‘To the left, to the left’ during a portion of “Irreplaceable” (Which they happily obliged), I stood in silence, wondering how much money Ne-Yo made from writing the tune.
Now I know this sounds like I’m hating and you’re probably thinking, “Well why the Hell did you even go to the show?” Excellent question. Allow me to explain.
Aside from already being at the venue and getting my money’s worth from seeing other great acts (Rudimental, 2 Chainz and Deadmau5) earlier in the day, I decided to check out Mrs. Carter’s show because I was told by multiple friends, and even my own mother, that she was a phenomenal performer. How could I, in good conscious, harshly criticize someone and not give them a fair shake? I was already there, so the least I could do was give the show a chance.
With that said, I took away two things from the concert: A) Jay-Z is a lucky man, and B) Beyoncé’s precision while performing is amazing and she is indeed an outstanding performer. Her choreography, backup singers, all-female band (Which I thought was pretty dope), stage sets, costume changes, attitude, stage presence, everything—grade A. Additionally, she’s a gorgeous woman, so I definitely wasn’t mad at seeing all of that as—erm, beauty.
Still, despite the actual performance being flawless and Beyoncé looking like a Popeye’s buffet in heels, it didn’t fix the biggest problem—her music doesn’t do anything for me. I don’t think it’s necessarily because I’m a guy, either. There were plenty of men in the audience who enjoyed the show. And while I did appreciate her rendition of Whitney Houston’s “Always Love You,” I would have been about 1,000x more entertained if she would have performed “Dance for You” and invited me onstage. But she didn’t, and I was sad.
By the time she took her final bow, the lights dimmed and Drake’s “Girls Love Beyoncé” blared out of the stage speakers, I came to the conclusion that ‘Queen Bey’ just isn’t for me. However, after experiencing her show firsthand, I understand her appeal. She’s a stellar performer and the true definition of a diva. She lives a glamorous lifestyle, is happily married to one of the most popular men on Earth and looks like a super model, even after giving birth to Hip-Hop’s golden child. Women want to be her and men want to drink her bath water. I get it, but what about the people who simply care about the quality of her songs and aren’t impressed by what she has to offer musically? Does that make us haters?
I recognize that my opinion is an extremely unpopular one. I also recognize that Beyoncé is an extremely successful artist who has sold millions of records worldwide. I recognize the hype and why she’s as likable as she is. What I don’t recognize, however, is the musical talent.
Maybe it’s just me, though.