Beyoncé is an American recording artist, actor, businesswoman, and producer famous for her electric performances and sassy dressing. She started her career in the 90s, conquering the music charts every decade since then. The singer has the most Grammy Awards and doesn’t look like she is stopping any time soon. Here are some fascinating Beyoncé facts that you probably didn’t know.
1. She Was Born in Houston, Texas
Born on September 4, 1981, Beyoncé was born in Houston, Texas, to Mathew Knowles, a sales manager, and Celestine “Tina” Knowles, a salon owner and hairdresser. She has two other siblings, Solange and Bianca Knowles. Her formal name is Beyoncé Giselle Knowles-Carter.
2. Beyoncé Attributes Her Music Passion to Michael Jackson
According to multiple interviews, Beyoncé attributed her music passion to the legendary Michael Jackson. She said when she attended a concert where the artist performed, she realized her purpose – she was only five.
She further stretched these sentiments at the World Music Awards in 2006, where she presented the icon with a tribute award, saying that she wouldn’t have ever performed if it wasn’t for him. Beyoncé’s other musical influences include Tina Turner, Whitney Houston, Diana Ross, and Toni Braxton.
3. Beyoncé Started Performing in Dancing and Singing Competition
Before rising to fame, Beyoncé sang and performed in various singing and dancing competitions as a child. Being a Methodist, she attended St. John’s United Methodist Church before moving to St. Mary’s Montessori School in Texas, where she enrolled in dancing classes.
Darlette Johnson, Beyoncé’s dance instructor at St. Mary’s Montessori school, discovered her singing talent as she could finish the songs he was humming to while reaching the required notes. Beyoncé beat other older kids in a singing competition after performing John Lennon’s “Imagine.”
4. Destiny’s Child Gave Beyoncé Her Breakthrough
After performing in choirs and winning various singing competitions, Beyoncé’s career had been set in motion. Her brand blew up when she joined Destiny’s Child, an all-girls American musical group. The group, which consisted of Michelle Williams and Kelly Rowland, released hit after hit. These included the soundtrack to the 1997 film Men in Black, Killing Time, No No No, Say My Name, and Jumpin’ Jumpin’.
5. Beyoncé’s First Solo Recording Was a Feature on Her Husband’s Song
Even though she was still a member of Destiny’s Child, Beyoncé’s first solo recording was a feature on her husband’s, Jay-Z, 03 Bonny & Clyde, released in October 2002. The song was a massive success, peaking at number four on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 chart. Beyoncé’s first solo album was Dangerously in Love, which premiered in 2003.
6. She Has Won the Most Grammy Awards
At the time of writing, Beyoncé has won the most Grammy Awards (32) since its inception in 1959. With hundreds of nominated artists, scooping 32 awards is no mean fete, considering how high the Hollywood competition is. Her first came in 2001 with Destiny’s Child for their song, “Say My Name,” while the latest came in 2023 for her hit “Cuff It.”
7. Beyoncé’s Lucky Number Is 4
According to Beyonce’s past interviews, she is obsessed with the number 4; she believes it is her lucky number. She was born on September 4, her husband, Jay Z, was born on December 4, they got wedded on April 4, and her mother’s birthday is on January 4, so it’s easy to see why she likes the number.
8. She Was Paid $24 Million for an Hour’s Performance in Dubai
While Beyoncé’s performances are generally pricy, the singer made headlines when she performed at a private event in Dubai on January 21, 2023. In the event held at Dubai’s Palm Jumeirah commemorating the unveiling of a new luxury hotel, Beyoncé reportedly earned $24 million for an hour’s performance.
9. Beyoncé’s Dubai Performance Was Met with Heavy Criticism
Even though Beyoncé earned a record amount of money for her Dubai Performance in January 2023, she was heavily criticized for it. She hadn’t appeared on stage for about five years. When she did, she chose a country where homosexuality is illegal, something that did not go down well with many.
10. Beyoncé Created an Alter-ego Called Sasha Fierce
The 2000s came with many controversies and conspiracy theories for celebrities; Beyoncé’s alter-ego, Sasha Fierce, was at the thick of it. In her accord, Beyoncé described Sasha Fierce as sexy, seductive, and provocative when performing. She said she created the character to differentiate her stage persona from who she really was. Beyonce denounced the alter-ego in 2010, saying she no longer needed her.
11. She Successfully Added a New Word to the Oxford Dictionary.
Beyoncé is credited with coining the word “bootylicious,” recognized by the Oxford Dictionary. The term refers to a sexually attractive person, primarily for women, and was first used in one of Destiny’s Child songs that Beyoncé co-wrote.
12. Beyoncé Loves Art
Other than singing, Beyoncé loves art, something she has always made clear. She visited the Louvre Museum in Paris four times in 10 years. The singer rented the entire building to shoot a music video (Apeshit) with Jay-Z.
13. Beyoncé Receives $5 Million for Every Kid She Has with Jay-Z
Reports indicate that Beyoncé signed a prenup that gives her $5 million for every child she sires with Jay-Z. She also qualified to receive $10 million if the marriage ended before two years (it didn’t).
14. She Was the First Black Woman to Headline Coachella
Coachella is a music and arts festival held annually at the Empire Polo Club in Indio, California. Even though the event aims to give both famous and emerging artists a platform to entertain the audience, it had not seen a black woman take the stage until Beyoncé happened in 2018. She headlined the show, attracting global attention, and trended on social media under the hashtag Beychella.
15. Beyoncé Missed out on a Role in Princess Tiana
Over time, Beyoncé has featured and directed several films, including The Pink Panther (2006), The Lion King (2019), and Black is King (2020). However, she has missed out on several that she wanted for various reasons.
For instance, she lost a chance to feature in Disney’s first black princess film, The Princess and the Frog, because she assumed she would get the role of Princess Tiana automatically, so she refused to audition. Anika Noni Rose, who co-starred with Beyoncé in the 2006 film Dreamgirls, got the part.
16. Beyoncé Can Get Free Popeyes for Life
When Popeye learned how much Beyoncé loved their food, they gave her a free-Popeyes-for-life card. She, however, confessed that she had never used the card as she felt too embarrassed. Her love for the food remains; they, together with her husband, served buckets of Popeye’s fried chicken at their wedding.
17. There Is a Species of Horsefly Named after Beyoncé
Commonly found in the Atherton Tablelands in northeast Queensland, Australia, Scaptia beyonceae is a horsefly species named after the American recording artist. Even though it was first discovered in 1981, it was not described scientifically until 2011.