Beyoncé and How She Made This Decade Her Own
Thu, October 21, 2021

Beyoncé and How She Made This Decade Her Own

Beyoncé has been a household name in the last decade, and just as she did before, she has become nearly synonymous with pop superstardom / Photo by: Eva Rinaldi via Flickr

 

If you think it makes you unique to call Beyoncé any less of the powerhouse that she is and has always been since the start of her career, you are terribly mistaken. 

Beyoncé has been a household name in the last decade, and just as she did before, she has become nearly synonymous with pop superstardom. She may share that spot with pop veterans like Jennifer Lopez but everyone knows that no one really does it like Beyoncé does. And in the last decade -- even though it did not start off as hers -- the Queen has once again showed us why her place in music is one that is simply and completely hers. 

So, how has Beyoncé’s decade been? 

A Woman of Color and Power 

As mentioned, Beyoncé may not have begun this decade absolutely slaying but she did still make it her own. Before discussing how seamlessly she’s rebranded herself from one era to the next, let’s revisit some of her most memorable moments of the last decade. 

Around December 2013 was when Beyoncé dropped her self-titled album, straight into her fans' laps. According to an article by The Conversation, a non-profit media outlet, Beyoncé utilized the album drop trick so flawlessly that it “forced conversations about artists bypassing traditional media and middle-men to strengthen the bond between themselves and their fans.” 

Robin Hilton, who shared his thoughts on the album drop on NPR, a website delivering national and world news, says that the most amazing aspect of Beyoncé’s album drop is the fact that she was successfully able to keep it a secret all that time. 

When “Lemonade” dropped, Beyoncé only intensified her political message in 2016 with an all-around solid album, in terms of message and her rebranded political identity, as well as fleshing out of her own personal struggles / Photo by: Nat Ch Villa via Wikimedia Commons

 

The album resonated with fans so quickly, too, what with the topic of discussion being feminism at a time when political statements were becoming the norm, even for music. When “Lemonade” dropped, Beyoncé only intensified her political message in 2016 with an all-around solid album, in terms of message and her rebranded political identity, as well as fleshing out of her own personal struggles. 

In short, Beyoncé really let herself become vulnerable. 

The decision to become more vulnerable clearly paid off as the Associated Press, an American non-profit news agency, listed “Lemonade” as the top-performing album of the decade with Beyoncé’s self-titled album as well, “Beyoncé.” 

Other female artists on the list are Rihanna, which made the entry with her album “ANTI,” Adele, with her album “21,” HAIM, with their album “Days Are Gone,” SZA, with “Ctrl,” and Janelle Monáe’s “The ArchAndroid.” Kendrick Lamar is also on the list with his album “good kid, m.A.A.d city.” 

Though throwing a couple of hits and misses towards the end of the decade, Katy Perry’s “Teenage Dream” still made the list. Beyoncé’s sister, Solange, also made the list with her “A Seat at the Table” album. 

Beyoncé of Business

Ann Powers for NPR describes Beyoncé’s shift to empowerment in “Lemonade” and her move near the end of the decade as both a “cultural story” and a “business story.” That much is true, as The Conversation writer Sarah Olutola defined Beyoncé’s pop stardom as being anchored in a pop star’s overall ability to survive through relevance and a consumable brand. 

This is seen in her recent foray into having her own company as well. According to Investopedia, one of the best-known sources of financial information, Parkwood Entertainment, Beyoncé’s company, “produces movies, music, and clothing.” Parkwood Entertainment has also produced the movies “Cadillac Records” and “Obsessed.” 

Rodney Carmichael of NPR says that Beyoncé’s decision to establish herself in her own company “reflects how much of a curator Beyoncé is.” 

“She’s able to build out this creative team of video directors, artistic directors that are able to help her manifest these mission statements that she has,” Carmichael said. 

Ann Powers for NPR describes Beyoncé’s shift to empowerment in “Lemonade” and her move near the end of the decade as both a “cultural story” and a “business story” / Photo by: Cornel Pex via Wikimedia Commons

 

At the start of the decade, Investopedia tracked Beyoncé’s marriage to rapper and entrepreneur Jay-Z in 2008, and how they then started the path to becoming a power couple. They also grossed $109.6 million on their On the Run Tour together in 2014. 

The On the Run Tour II made $253.3 million four years later. These days, the power couple’s net worth as of December 2018 is already at $1.4 billion.

Her own Formation World Tour in 2016 earned her a quarter of a billion dollars, according to business website Business Insider. Since she also headlined Coachella in 2018, she was paid $3 million for her performance. Meanwhile, the accompanying Netflix special of the nearly 2-hour performance also gave her a $60 million deal. 

Beyoncé holds “significant equity” on Tidal, her husband Jay-Z’s music streaming service, which is worth $600 million. 

Aside from her company and incredibly lucrative music career, Beyoncé signed with PepsiCo in 2012 where she was paid a $50 million endorsement deal, a hybrid deal which only requires Beyoncé to appear in Pepsi print ads and commercials. In return Pepsi “provides funding for selected creative projects.” She is also a spokesperson for cosmetic company L’Oreal.