Beyonce and Jay-Z kicked off their On the Run Tour II on Wednesday in Cardiff, Wales, and gave fans a glimpse of intimate moments between the pair. During the concert, Beyonce shares new video of Rumi and Sir with a possible vow renewal and the beyhive went crazy.
The Carters have mastered keeping her private life private until they’re ready to reveal all, and that’s just what they did with Rumi and Sir. Previously, the only official photo of the twins was when Bey posted on Instagram an image of her holding them in her arms when they were just one-month-old. A fresh glimpse of the now 11-month-old babies, was featured in a video interlude during the concert. That particular video also had the beyhive buzzing with speculation that the Carters may have renewed their vows when they celebrated their 10-year wedding anniversary in April.
Grandma Tina Lawson posted a screenshot from the video with the caption, “My babies.” In the photo, Beyonce and Jay-Z are wearing white, facing each other, heads down and holding hands. Rumi and Sir were also in white, being held next to them, as big sister Blue Ivy stood nearby.
While social media videos and photographs on Beyonce’s website display endless moments of affection between her and her hubby, the power couple also referenced one of their more controversial moments by making a grand entrance in an elevator shaft. This was a clear nod to the infamous elevator fight between Jay-Z and sister-in-law Solange during the 2014 Met Gala. The incident fired up infidelity rumors, which were later addressed in Beyonce’s Lemonade album and Jay-z’s 4:44. But this time, the couple appeared stronger than ever as they stood side-by-side, holding hands.
Queen Bey did not disappoint when it came to her concert fashion. According to Elle, she wore a total of six different looks. The songstress elevated her signature fishnet tights, bodysuits, and thigh-high boots by mixing it up with face masks, body jewelry, and futuristic fabrics. One of her show-stopping looks included a diamond-encrusted blazer and matching bodysuit paired with clear vinyl boots. She also brought out the sex appeal with a red leopard print bodysuit and black garter belt.
OTR II Tour’s next stop is in Glasgow, Scotland on June 9.
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Beyonce Shares New Video of Rumi and Sir with a Possible Vow Renewal: Photographs courtesy of @beyonce on Instagram and @mstinalawson on Instagram
Less than two weeks for the start of summer. Yes! Wow, this year is flying by so fast. Some may look at summer as the time to sit back on a reclining beach chair, with a cold one in your hand, feeling the nice breeze. But we’re more concerned with summer as the time to get out and see as many of the best artists around in concert as we can. Here are the 8 concerts that you should be counting down to.
Beyoncé and Jay-Z
One of the hottest couples and reigning duo will be performing their Bonnie and Clyde act to 18 shows across America. So get pumped for the “On the Run II” tour, which kicks off on June 25, and runs till Aug. 6. You don’t want to miss the mind-blowing showmanship.
At one point, this band was thought to be dead. But now they’re making headlines all over the country. This will be the fifth leg of the band’s successful “After Laughter” tour and I am sure it will be a beauty to watch. The band hits the road beginning on June 12 in Saint Augustine, Florida. Buy your tickets now, as tickets will sell out fast.
Oh my god, get ready, for all the young ladies out there. One of the most handsome men is slated to bring his tour to the states. As he continues his red-hot tour, “What Makes You Country,” at MetLife Stadium in New Jersey on Saturday, June 2. Hooray! Joining Bryan on stage will be some of country’s popular stars like Sam Hunt, Jon Pardi, and Morgan Wallen.
Alright, as much as I’m feeling the “adrenaline rush,” folks out there should be as well. She’s back! The queen of all music genres and snakes! So guys, are you ecstatic for the “Reputation” stadium tour? The tour is currently underway in the US, but Taylor will also add some international flair to the proceedings with stops in England, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, and Japan.
Kesha and Macklemore
Let the adventures and fun begin. The cutest pair are co-headlining “The Adventures of Kesha and Macklemore” tour to support their albums, Rainbow and Gemini. My guess is that this tour will be epic to watch live. The tour kicks off on June 6 in Phoenix and ends on August 5 in Tampa.
If you’ve been to a wedding in the last few years, you’re probably very acquainted with the music of Bruno Mars. Lucky for you, his “24K Magic World Tour” is coming back to the US after stops in Asia and Europe. He’ll make his return July 25 in Las Vegas and will have dates across the country, ending October 27 in LA. To make things even better, he’ll be accompanied at almost all of the shows by Cardi B!
Ahhh…the British singer-songwriter is coming! Back that is, after a long European leg of his “÷ Tour.” This time, things are going to be even bigger, as Sheeran will be performing at large stadiums on this leg versus the smaller arenas he played on the last American leg of the tour. Things kick off on August 18 in Pasadena and run through November 10 in Atlanta.
It might surprise some to see Britney on my list, but how could anyone doubt that she’s going to put on a great show. And who knows what might happen during any of them? Last year, a man rushed on stage at one of her shows and was quickly tackled by security. Let’s hope the excitement this time comes from the show itself. The American leg of her “Piece of Me Tour” starts July 12 in Oxon Hill, Maryland.
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8 Killer Summer Concerts To Get Pumped For. Featured Image Credit: Sffoghorn
The recent rise of the collective in hip-hop has been undeniable. BROCKHAMPTON (technically a boy band, we know,) A$AP Mob, Migos, and Odd Future are just a few of the big names from the past few years. Before that, we had the Wu-Tang Clan, Run-DMC, A Tribe Called Quest, N.W.A., Fugees, and Public Enemy. Even earlier were The Beastie Boys and Salt N Pepa. And this is only scratching the surface.*
The influence of the group in hip-hop can easily be tracked, and has been, but the pervasion of the collective is not the only reason that the genre is inherently collaborative. Nor is it the cause of hip-hop’s surge in popularity and supersession of rock as the most dominant genre of music in America, according to Nielsen’s 2017 year-end report. There’s a reason why the genre has been able to consistently innovate, come out on top, define what’s cool. And the answer lies much deeper, and much further back in history, than success on streaming platforms, like Nielsen’s findings suggest.
Last year, the UK-based art and design studio Dorothy released its ‘Hip-Hop Love Blueprint,’ a blue and metallic gold screen print that links together “over 700 MCs, DJs, producers, turntablists, musicians, graffiti artists, b-boys and b-girls who […] have been pivotal to the evolution of hip-hop, from pioneers such as DJ Kool Herc and Grandmaster Flash to present day chart success stories Kendrick Lamar and Drake, and global superstars Jay-Z and Kanye West.” While the website description stresses the importance of certain groundbreaking artists and events, in order to truly understand the genre, it’s important to begin by paying attention to the links.
Like in any other genre, hip-hop has its stars—the people whose music shaped the future, whose legacy remains so strong that one wrong word about them could lead to physical threats. Dorothy mentioned some, but it would be pointless to go through the whole list. What distinguishes hip-hop from other popular music genres is not the artists themselves, but the way they are constantly working together in order to create the most dynamic art. When was the last time you listened to a rap album without features? Chance’s blockbuster hit Coloring Book only included two songs without features, Drake’s most recent More Life featured British grunge rappers to explore unprecedented sounds for the Toronto-born artist, 2 Chainz’s Pretty Girls Like Trap Music hit hard by including some of the genre’s biggest names (Nicki Minaj, Drake, and Migos are just a few.) Besides a couple of stragglers (notably, J. Cole on his last two albums and Childish Gambino on Awaken, My Love!, among others,) the majority of hip-hop artists have essentially committed to this type of constant collaboration.
The way in which members of the hip-hop community engage with each other is analogous to scientists in a lab, or scholars in a field of research. This is the part where you have to bear with me for a second; all of these examples fall under the category of a shared activity. A shared activity, when loosely explained through Aristotle’s theories, comprises a shared and mutual commitment to a common goal, a mutual understanding of everyone’s individual role in accomplishing this goal, and a mutual agreement for everyone to perform his own individual role within the pursuit of this goal. If the common goal in question is the creation of a chart-topping album—like Flower Boy or No One Ever Really Dies, both of which heavily rely on features—then it’s difficult to argue against the fact that each participant checks off the items on this list.
One of the main benefits of a shared activity, especially when it comes to the creation of hip-hop, is the continuous engagement of its participants. If everyone is not only working on their own projects, but also engaging in the projects of others, then there is never a lack of interest or stimulation. Cue the features.
And, of course, the diss tracks. Although it may seem like the point of a good diss track is to stun the subject into silence, they usually—and unsurprisingly—have the opposite effect. Maybe therein lies the purpose. They incite a type of conversation in rap unlike that which exists in any other genre. No one ever truly gets the final word; more often than not, the challenge just sparks the creation of more music. This tradition of call-outs has existed since the early days of rap; the hip-hop rivalry phenomenon has given us hits from artists like The Notorious B.I.G. and 2Pac, Drake and Meek Mill, Nicki Minaj and Remy Ma. There were even theories that Kendrick was coming at Big Sean on DAMN. This isn’t to create a false equivalency between serious rivalries and occasional teasing, but there’s a reason why rappers seldom run out of things to say; each artist, at one point or another, becomes responsible for making sure that the conversation doesn’t end.
Another innovation that is unique to hip-hop is the rise of the producer as an artist in and of themself. Yes, bar the DIY scene, basically every artist in every genre needs a producer. But never before have producers held such distinctive roles in the creation of music that performance legends are seeking them out for their input and style. Like Jay-Z on his album 4:44, which arguably became more regarded for the producing feats of No I.D. than the rapping itself. Or everyone and Metro Boomin, who has left a mark as big as it gets on hip-hop; known for being a mainstream hit-machine, he’s collaborated with nearly every big name from Gucci Mane and 21 Savage to Drake and DJ Khaled. His tagline—“if young Metro don’t trust you, I’m gon’ shoot you,” created by Future in a collaboration with Uncle Murda—has infiltrated rap playlists indefinitely, and has kicked off its own cultural phenomenon. Or Mike WiLL Made-It, who was the beat-maker behind both Beyoncé’s “Formation” and Kendrick Lamar’s “HUMBLE.”
Even rappers who lean towards producing their own music, like hip-hop’s biggest workaholic Kanye West, rely on the idea of collaboration in order to create. One of the key features of Kanye’s music is his prolific use of samples—often of relatively unknown artists. Sampling, which is the technique of digitally encoding music or sound and reusing it as part of a composition or recording, is just one more way in which hip-hop artists take advantage of the community-like aspects of music in order to further art. By bringing in voices or sounds that otherwise wouldn’t have been heard by listeners of mainstream rap—like the contemporary classical composer Caroline Shaw, who West collaborated with on tracks “POWER” and “Say You Will”—hip-hop artists are opening up unprecedented avenues for their music.
At this point, you may be asking why this is important. There is an innumerable amount of answers, all dependent on your own experience with hip-hop, but there’s also a common thread that is woven through all of them. Historically, as a genre, hip-hop has not been given the respect it deserves. This isn’t a revolutionary statement in any sense; it’s just a recognition of the symptomatic way we view art that we do not deem to be fine. With rap taking the lead as America’s most popular form of music, it is about time that the contributions which hip-hop and its artists have made to music are acknowledged and celebrated. It is also time that we begin viewing them as more than transient blips in culture, bolstered by teenagers, social media, and streaming services. There have been dozens of articles likening Kanye West to Beethoven or Mozart, but it is important to note that he is not the only artist engaging in intellectual art-creation. He is just one of hundreds in a community of forward-thinkers and risk-takers. Hip-hop may not be a fine art, but that is because it is something much bigger; it is alive and it is growing, and it cannot be contained with four walls and a velvet rope.
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Hip-Hop As A Shared Activity: How Collaboration Created America’s New Pop: Featured image courtesy of Ashlan Grey/The FADER
Within an hour of Jay-Z’s 4:44 dropping on TIDAL, people were already calling the album “Jay’s Lemonade.” This was inevitable, as some tracks appear to be his most confessional songs to date. For example, “4:44” — arguably the strongest track on the album and one of the best he’s ever written — details in brutally honest lyrics any shortcomings in his relationships with his wife, children, and himself. Ultimately, this album tells the story of how Jay-Z’s failures became his comeback.
But to say this album is solely about infidelity or responding to Lemonade would be a gross oversimplification; it’s about a lifelong rumination on personal failure in regards to love, parenthood, friendship, monetary success, artistry, and racial progression. With the help of producer No I.D., Jay-Z was able to perfectly capture this mixture of vulnerability and power.
It took almost four years exactly for Jay-Z to follow up Magna Carta… Holy Grail — a drought that led many to accuse the rapper of falling out of the game. In addition to taking a hiatus from music, Jay’s career suffered an inevitable dragging when Beyoncé’s Lemonade dropped last year. Since then, it’s fair to say that the public has been more concerned with the Carters’ relationship than their music. One might have forgotten Jay-Z’s name in music the past four years, thus giving listeners plenty of time to learn a few new ones.
Throughout the album, Jay addresses this new generation of rappers who have seemingly ‘replaced’ him. This occurs most notably in “Family Feud” where he pleads with the two groups to stop tearing each other down by saying, “We all lose when the family feuds.” He confronts the differences between his lifestyle and that of the new generation in “Bam,” where you hear him say, “Y’all be talkin’ crazy under them IG pictures / So when you get to hell you tell ‘em Blanco sent you / I can’t take no threats, I got a set of twins.”
Another important shift in Jay’s life since his 2013 studio album is the dissolution of his relationship with Kanye West. He partially blames himself for this, which you can find in 4:44’s intro “Kill Jay-Z” when he says, “You got hurt because you did cool by ‘Ye / You gave him 20 million without blinking / he gave you 20 minutes on stage.” Jay also blames the end of this friendship on his own ego and lifestyle in this track, and explains that he is too old for Kanye’s petty games. The 4:44 singer takes jabs at West throughout other songs on the album as well, such as in “Caught Their Eyes,” where he references Kanye’s hit “Ni**as in Paris.”
The flow of this album allows Jay-Z moments of self-critique and opportunities to indulge his egotistical persona. If “Kill Jay Z” is his self-destruction, then the rest of the album is his rebirth. He rewrites his own history through a lens of self-awareness by referencing many old lines and tackling them in a new way — almost as if he’s writing footnotes for his previous self. This new Jay-Z is vulnerable when it comes to his loved ones, but assertive when it comes to racial injustice. He is not ignorant, self-important, arrogant, or in denial, and that is the beauty of this album. It’s the story we’ve been waiting to hear from him all along, but he only just found the courage to tell.
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How Jay-Z’s Failures Became His Comeback: Image courtesy of REX/Shutterstock
Hello, February! New day, new month, new baby news?! Not just one baby, but two!
In case you haven’t heard, Queen Bey is carrying twins and Blue Ivy is going to be a big sister two times over as the Carters expand their family.
This isn’t the first time Beyoncé and husband Jay-Z have made the world stop with their baby news. The announcement of Blue Ivy at the 2011 VMAs was one for the books. Beyoncé literally dropped the mic and a baby bomb at the same damn time after her crowd rocking performance of Love on Top.
How do you top that announcement? Simple: be expecting with twins and upload a picture to Instagram.
Now, the question is will they be boys or girls? And what will the names be?
From Cliché to the Carters, congratulations!
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Beyoncé Announces That She’s Pregnant With Twins: Images courtesy of Instagram
Following the 57th Grammys back in February, Kanye West voiced his opinion that today’s music industry does not respect artists or their work enough. Just over one month later on March 30, Jay-Z launched his new music streaming service, TIDAL, which aims to give the power back and “to create a better service and experience for fans and artists.”
The kickoff of TIDAL brought together musicians from all genres towards one common goal: “to re-establish the value of music.” Along with Jay-Z, Alicia Keys, Win Butler and Régine Chassagne (Arcade Fire), Beyoncé, Calvin Harris, Chris Martin (Coldplay), Daft Punk, Jack White, Jason Aldean, J. Cole, Kanye West, Deadmau5, Madonna, Nicki Minaj, Rihanna, and Usher collectively own the streaming service, which is available on the web or as an app on iPhone and Android.
Many of you are likely wondering what sets TIDAL apart from the other music-streaming services, other than the fact that it’s owned by these musicians. On the TIDAL website, the owners explain that there is a clear quality difference between the compressed mp3 files that we hear in most digital music and the lossless, unreduced sound that can be heard on CDs and vinyl records. TIDAL offers to provide the latter in digital form, allowing you to hear the music the way the artists want it to be heard. TIDAL offers us a chance to hear music in the highest quality, profit from tailor-made playlists, and receive recommendations from their editorial team.
TIDAL offers two subscription packages: TIDAL Premium and TIDAL HiFi. TIDAL Premium is $9.99 per month and includes “standard sound quality, high definition music videos, and expertly curated editorial.” For $19.99 per month, TIDAL HiFi offers almost the same experience as its Premium package, except it replaces standard sound quality with “lossless high fidelity sound quality.” The service is ad-free with either package and free 30-day trials are available now.
What do you think? Will you be abandoning your current method of consuming music to subscribe to TIDAL?
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TIDAL: Making Waves in Streaming Music: Photo courtesy of Tidal.com
Prepare yourself for the remix face-off! Drunk in Love: Beyoncé/Jay-Z vs Christina Milian/Lil Wayne!
Who did it better?
Remember when everyone was all night, drunk in love and “surfbording” on the beach with Queen Bey and Jay-Z? Well, who is ready for a part two?
Christina Milian and Lil’ Wayne that’s who! The pair collaborated and created their own rendition of the popular song Drunk in Love on his recently released mixtape Sorry 4 The Wait 2, which raises the question, which couple truly intoxicated you with their love?
Beyonce and Jay-Z brought us Drunk in Love on the beach:
Christina Milian and Lil’ Wayne haven’t brought us a video just yet, but they were sure to provide us with enough imagery that we could get the picture:
Although the alleged couple has not officially confirmed their relationship status they have been spotted together a lot in recent months and Milian gushed over how she loves making music with the rapper during her interview with DailyMail.
Milian took to Twitter promoting the release of Lil’ Wayne’s mixtape:
— Christina Milian (@ChristinaMilian) January 20, 2015
But whats the verdict on the Drunk in Love Remix? Some fans can’t take contain their excitement
— matt piontkowski (@ikswoktnoipttam) January 21, 2015
and others…let’s just say they’re very loyal to Queen Bey
Just fell back in love with Beyoncé. #DrunkInLove
— Alex (@shoobonk) January 22, 2015
So who takes the crown?
Photo Courtesy of Billboard
Beyoncé isn’t the only taken Knowles sister. Baby sister Solange Knowles married video director Alan Ferguson this past Sunday. The ceremony, according to Huffington Post, was held at the Marigny Opera House in New Orleans, Louisiana and had around 200 family and friends in attendance, including Beyoncé and Jay-Z.
According to Vogue, Knowles arrived at the opera house in an ivory jumpsuit on a white bicycle decorated with cream-colored roses. While Knowles walked down the aisle, one of the couple’s favorites songs, an instrumental version of Donny Hathaway’s “I Love the Lord, He Heard My Cry” played. The ceremony also included performances by friends and artists Kelela, Questlove, and Kindness.
All of the ceremony attendees, or at least those closest to the bride and groom, appear to have worn all-white, bringing a cohesive theme to the wedding and the beautiful wedding day photographs.
The ceremony later concluded with sparklers and dancing on the streets of the French Quarter.
This is the second wedding for Knowles, who had, in 2004, previously married Daniel Smith, with whom she has a son, Daniel Julez Smith, Jr.
From everyone here at Cliché Magazine, congratulations Solange and Alan!
Divorce? Whats that? Crazy in love is more like it!
That’s right, Beyonce and Jay Z renew vows amid months of speculation and divorce rumors— the Carter reign continues! A source tells People Magazine that “They did have major problems, but they worked it out and they’ve renewed their vows.”
Not only are the two stronger than before and putting those rumors of a split to rest, but they are also reportedly in search of a new home. Where, might you ask? In the City of Love aka La Ville-Lumuire (City of Light), but love is more appropriate here— Paris of course!
They’ve been spotted in and out of Paris for weeks now and according to People, they’ve explored properties in areas near Seine, the gated community known as “Millionaire’s Row” and Elysee Place.
Finally, some positivity in a sea of negative Nancys. Let’s take a moment to applaud the Beyhive for their undying affection for Beyonce and the rest of the Carter clan,
from constantly believing love would prevail (even when signs pointed to divorce),
for running to Blue Ivy’s side when critiques made her hair topic of conversation (and threatening to have people [Karrueche] kicked out of the U.S.), to even in recent events with them coming at Queen Bey’s new do:
This fan club means business; they’re unbothered by the haters and standing loyal to their queen, as they should.
Congrats to the happy couple!
Have you seen the new “On the Run” video? If you have, you’ll know that Beyonce and Jay Z share personal home videos with their fans during their “On the Run” concert tour.
According to Huffington Post, Beyonce shared a video on YouTube last Sunday of a clip from Beyonce and Jay Z’s HBO concert special. The clip, which shows Beyonce and Jay Z performing their songs “Young Forever” and “Halo,” also features intimate home videos of the two. Among the clips presented, the video depicts a young Jay Z and Beyonce’s early relationship, the pair’s matching “IV” tattoos, and their private 2008 wedding ceremony.
The video also gives viewers a rare glimpse into the power couple’s home life, specifically in regard to their daughter, Blue Ivy. In one of the scenes, Beyonce is shown in a hospital bed holding the couple’s newborn child, and, in another, Blue Ivy learns to walk.
It’s almost surprising that the couple released such personal videos–including one of a topless, pregnant Beyonce–to the public, since the details of their wedding have been kept secret for so long. But the couple gave fans an inside look at their lives on their own terms, without nosy paparazzi or a big magazine spread, and, for that, I respect their decision. I can’t imagine a more tasteful and artistic way for Beyonce and Jay-Z to share their lives with their fans!
Watch the video below: