Beyoncé Giselle Knowles-Carter, simply known as Beyoncé (// bee-YON-say; born September 4, 1981), is an American singer, songwriter and actress. Born and raised in Houston, Texas, she performed in various singing and dancing competitions as a child, and rose to fame in the late 1990s as lead singer of R&B girl-group Destiny's Child. Managed by her father Mathew Knowles, the group became one of the world's best-selling girl groups of all time. Their hiatus saw the release of Knowles' debut album Dangerously in Love (2003), which established the singer as a viable solo artist worldwide; it sold 11 million copies, earned five Grammy Awards and featured the Billboard number one singles "Crazy in Love" and "Baby Boy".
Following the disbandment of Destiny's Child in 2005, she released her second solo album B'Day (2006), which contained hits "Irreplaceable" and "Beautiful Liar". Knowles also ventured into acting, with a Golden Globe nominated performance in Dreamgirls (2006), and starring roles in The Pink Panther (2006) and Obsessed (2009). Her marriage to rapper Jay-Z and portrayal of Etta James in Cadillac Records (2008) influenced her third album I Am... Sasha Fierce (2008), which saw the birth of her alter-ego Sasha Fierce and earned a record-setting six Grammy Awards in 2010, including Song of the Year for "Single Ladies (Put a Ring on It)". Knowles took a hiatus from music in 2010, took over management of her career and explored 1970s R&B, rock and roll, and African and funk styles. As a result, her fourth album, 4 (2011), deviated towards a more traditional R&B sound.
A self-described "modern-day feminist", Knowles' songs are often characterized by themes of love, relationships and monogamy, as well as female sexuality and empowerment. On stage, her dynamic, highly-choreographed performances have led to critics hailing her as one of the best entertainers in contemporary popular music. Throughout a career spanning 15 years, she has won 17 Grammy Awards and sold over 118 million records as a solo artist and 60 million with Destiny's Child, making her one of the best-selling music artists of all time. The Recording Industry Association of America recognized Knowles as the top certified artist in America during the 2000s decade. In 2009, Billboard named her the Top Radio Songs Artist of the Decade, the Top Female Artist of the 2000s and their Artist of the Millennium. In 2013, she was also included in Time magazine's list of the 100 most influential people in the world.
American singer and songwriter Beyoncé, also known simply as Beyoncé, has released four studio albums, two extended plays, four live albums, two compilation albums, thirty-eight singles (including ten as a featured artist) and ten promotional singles. Having sold 118 million records worldwide, Knowles is one of the best-selling music artists of all time; she has sold over 13 million albums in the US. The Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) recognized Knowles as the Top Certified Artist of the 2000s decade.
Knowles' career began as lead vocalist of Destiny's Child, a band which sold around 60 million records worldwide. Knowles released her first solo album, Dangerously in Love (2003), during the hiatus of Destiny's Child. It debuted at number one on the US Billboard 200 and produced the singles "Crazy in Love", "Baby Boy", "Me, Myself & I", "Naughty Girl" and "The Closer I Get to You". With "Crazy in Love" and Dangerously in Love, Knowles became the first female artist—and the fifth artist ever—to top both the singles and albums charts simultaneously in the United States and the United Kingdom. In 2003, "Crazy in Love" and "Baby Boy" peaked at number one on the US Billboard Hot 100 for eight and nine weeks, respectively. Dangerously in Love has sold 11 million copies worldwide.
After the disbandment of Destiny's Child in 2005, Knowles released "Check on It" featuring Slim Thug for The Pink Panther soundtrack, and the single topped the US Billboard Hot 100 chart for five weeks. It was later included on her second studio album, B'Day (2006), which produced six singles, including top-ten hits "Déjà Vu", "Irreplaceable" and "Beautiful Liar". "Ring the Alarm" became Knowles' biggest debut on the US Billboard Hot 100 chart, entering at number twelve in 2006, whereas "Irreplaceable" remained at the top of the same chart for ten consecutive weeks in 2006–07, becoming Knowles' longest running single at the pole position of that chart. As of February 2008, B'Day had sold over 7 million copies worldwide, and as of October 2012, 3.3 million copies in the US.
Knowles' third album, I Am... Sasha Fierce (2008), is a dual disc album, which is intended to reflect the two facets of her personality. It debuted at number one on the US Billboard 200 chart and included the singles "If I Were a Boy", "Single Ladies (Put a Ring on It)" which topped the US Billboard Hot 100 chart for four weeks, "Halo" and "Sweet Dreams". I Am... Sasha Fierce sold 3 million paid digital downloads in the United States, and the album has sold over seven million copies worldwide as of March 2011. Knowles' fourth studio album, 4, was released in June 2011 and debuted atop the US Billboard 200 chart, becoming her fourth consecutive number one album in the United States. The album's first two singles, "Run the World (Girls)" and "Best Thing I Never Had", both reached the top ten in several charts worldwide, and the fourth single "Love on Top" topped the US Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart for seven consecutive weeks.
I Am... World Tour is a live DVD/CD concert film by American R&B recording artist Beyoncé. Knowles produced, directed and edited the concert film for her own production company Parkwood Pictures. The DVD was filmed in presence of more than a million fans during her worldwide I Am... World Tour, running from March 2009 through February 2010, in support of her third studio album, I Am... Sasha Fierce (2008). The DVD release is a combination of performances from the tour, including guest appearances from Jay-Z and Kanye West, as well as backstage moments. Knowles explained that the idea of filming her worldwide performances came when she realised that she was feeling lonely. She edited the DVD for nine months and it serves as her directorial debut.
The DVD was released in three separate editions; standard, deluxe and Blu-ray. In the United States, the standard edition was only made available exclusively at Wal-Mart on November 26, 2010. The deluxe edition was released in several countries around the world on the same date. The Blu-ray edition was released from December 3, 2010 in a list of selected countries only. She promoted it by appearing on several shows, including ABC's Nightline and by holding a screening of her DVD in New York, in presence of several fans and artists on November 21, 2010. Prior to the release, numerous trailers kept dropping on Knowles' official website in November. I Am... World Tour premiered exclusively on ABC on November 25, 2010 as a 90-minute Thanksgiving special.
Upon the release of the DVD, it received mixed to positive reviews from music critics who generally praised the high-energy performances of the song as well as Knowles' vocals. I Am... World Tour debuted at number one on the Billboard Music DVD Chart, giving Knowles her second consecutive number one DVD in the United States. It was certified double platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America. The DVD was also successful worldwide, peaking inside the top ten on the DVD charts in every country after its release. It became the best-selling music DVD of 2010 in the world and seventh best-selling of 2011. I Am... World Tour was nominated in the category for Best Long Form Music Video at the 54th Grammy Awards.
"Irreplaceable" is a song recorded by American R&B singer Beyoncé for her second studio album, B'Day (2006). The song was written by Knowles, Shaffer "Ne-Yo" Smith, Tor Erik Hermansen, Mikkel S. Eriksen, Espen Lind, Amund Bjørklund, and produced by Stargate and Knowles herself. Originally not created for Knowles, it was initially presented as a country record. "Irreplaceable" then was turned into a mid-tempo pop ballad with R&B influences. Lyrically, the song refers to breaking up with an unfaithful man and consists of a female empowerment theme. The single was released on December 5, 2006, in the United States as the album's third major release, and as the second single in most international music markets through Columbia Records.
"Irreplaceable" was generally well-received by music critics, some of them even called it the most memorable track on the album, and added that it manages to recapture Knowles' debut single "Crazy in Love"'s "near-perfection". In 2009, Pitchfork Media and Rolling Stone ranked it on their respective lists of Best Songs of the 2000s decade. "Irreplaceable" won at the 2007 Soul Train Music Award for Best R&B/Soul Single, and the 2007 Nickelodeon Kid's Choice Award for Favorite Song. It was also nominated for Record of the Year in the 2008 Grammy Awards, and for Song of the Year at the VH1 Soul Vibe awards show.
"Irreplaceable" was a worldwide commercial success. It became Knowles' second best-selling single in her solo career after "Crazy in Love" and B'Day's most successful release. The single remained at the top of the US Billboard Hot 100 chart for ten consecutive weeks. Certified multi-platinum, "Irreplaceable" emerged as the best-selling single in 2007 and the twenty-fifth most successful song of the 2000s decade in the United States. The single also passed the 200 million audience impressions mark towards the end of 2006, while another single of Knowles, "Check on It" (2005), also surpassed the same mark earlier that year. Eventually, Knowles became the second female singer to achieve this in the United States, after Mariah Carey. "Irreplaceable" peaked at number one in Australia, at number four in the United Kingdom, and generally inside the top twenty across European music markets.
The single's accompanying music video was directed by Anthony Mandler and it features the debut performance of Knowles' all-female band, Suga Mama. The video was included on the 2007 B'Day Anthology Video Album and a video edit was produced for "Irreemplazable", the Spanish version of the song. The video earned Knowles a Video of the Year award at the 2007 Black Entertainment Television (BET) Awards, and it was nominated for Video of the Year during the 2007 MTV Video Music Awards. The song was promoted by Knowles with live performances, including the The Ellen DeGeneres Show and the American Music Awards of 2007. The song was also a part of her set list on The Beyoncé Experience in Los Angeles and her world tour I Am... Tour. The American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers (ASCAP) recognized the song as one of the most performed songs of 2008 at the ASCAP Pop Music Awards.
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