This week’s From The Vault celebrates not one but, two milestones. For, the date marks the birthday of one of Pop culture’s brightest stars as well as the 10th anniversary of her sophomore effort.
Suffice to say, today’s pick comes courtesy of Beyonce and her infectious single ‘Upgrade U’ from her funkified ‘B’Day’ LP.
The hard-hitting cut saw Bey partner up with producer Swizz Beatz, songwriter Sean Garrett, and bae-turned-husband Jay Z.
Though the power couple had professed their infatuation with each other on prior releases, this instance centered on one-up-man-ship. Indeed, Bey and Jay traded vivacious verses about how necessary they were to the other. Both personally and professionally.
In being shamelessly materialistic, the track still managed to maintain the singer’s fervent feminist stance. Because at every utterance, she made it known that she had her own, was her own, and is such a catch that Jay could no longer be alone.
Commercially, the song was only released in the US as a promotional single. As such, it was a minor hit on the Billboard Hot 100 – peaking at #59. It was, however, a Top 20 smash on the Hot Hip-Hop/R&B chart where it reached the 11th position.
‘Formation’ director and good friend Melina Mastoukas took the helm of the jam’s shinny video alongside Queen Bey.
In order to accentuate the luxurious lure of the song’s lyrics, Ms Carter is seen cavorting amidst expensive goods such as jewelry, diamonds and gold watches. All the while remaining the hottest commodity herself.
Never one to disappoint as a performer, the diva delivered with choreography and slickly hit her steps like a seasoned pro. As with the track, the visual and the movement therein have become iconic.
If the 10 years leading up to ‘B’Day’ were used to establish Beyonce as “the hottest chick in the game,” the decade that followed saw her become an icon, a Pop culture force, and a undeniable legend in the making. An enviable status achieved through sheer showmanship, philanthropy, and – above all – a dutiful dedication to her craft.
In recent times, “unpredictable” has become a Beyonce trademark. As such we’re buckled up for what the decade ahead holds for music’s reigning royal. We imagine, there’ll be more surprise and excitement on the horizon.
So with that…
Happy anniversary to this R&B classic and the album it sits on. And the Happiest Birthday to Beyonce!