"Freedom Freedom/I can't move" sings Beyoncé in one of Lemonade's most powerful pieces. The song, a touching featuring with Kendrick Lamar, has indirectly become an anthem of empowerment for Queen Bey's African American fanbase.
Freedom opposes paralysis, and this verse seems prophetic. A policeman's shocking death by suffocation of George Floyd was the straw that broke the camel's back, and made the most bleak truth evident: the African Americans, although apparently free, are actually hostages in a cage controlled by supremacists violent.
The world of black music has been fighting for ages to give voice to its vast community. First of all Beyoncé, who with Lemonade not only tells a story of love introspection, but also a hymn to the varied black community to which she belongs. Directed by the highly acclaimed director Melina Matsoukas, the film that accompanies the album is a journey into the Creole origins of Beyoncé, Texas of his childhood, in the maze of history.
In the video of Formation Beyoncé and her splendid dancers claim their origins, dressed like the rich landowners of the South, and dance to the rhythm of irresistible self-confidence on the verses of "I like my negro nose/With Jackson 5 nostrils". A powerful claim to love for their origins.
The performance was repeated at the Super Bowl ceremony: this time Bey&Co. however, they are dressed like the Black Panther, all with a wavy curl and an unprecedented grit. The singer was fined, her performance deemed improperly political.
Rihanna is another super pop star on the front lines. Not only the author with Pharrell of the pungent Lemon, a piece of political denunciation in which she represents a god, but also a symbol of a peaceful revolt that takes place through strategic gestures. She called the eyeliner of her Fenty line "cuz I’m black", a famous answer he gave to a self-styled fan who wondered why her hair was so frizzy. From Run This Town, where she steals the show from Jay-Z and Kanye West, covered by a balaclava and framed in a revolt, up to her lingerie show and her line of beauty products in all shades of nude possible, Rihanna he never backs down to fight his battle.
And then Doja Cat, Nicki Minaj, Cardi B, Megan Thee Stallion, Normani... all these pop stars, through their songs, their videos and their aesthetics celebrate their origins and their sincerity rewards them in listening. Maybe that's why Lana Del Rey sadly had to grab them to be reconsidered influential in the music scene. In an open letter on Instagram, she declared herself a victim of prejudice from the music audience, who prefers their self-confidence messages to hers of toxic love. Sorry, Lana, but this is a fall in style.
"Ok ladies now let's get in formation" Beyoncé sings again: America has now joined, and we too send our support against the rampant prejudice and racism.