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The Beyoncé Portal

Beyoncé as photographed by Tony Duran in 2011

Beyoncé Giselle Knowles-Carter (née Knowles; born September 4, 1981), known mononymously as Beyoncé (/biˈjɒns/ bee-YON-say), is an American singer 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 Beyoncé's debut album, Dangerously in Love (2003), which established her as a solo artist worldwide; it sold 11 million copies, earned five Grammy Awards and featured the Billboard Hot 100 number-one singles "Crazy in Love" and "Baby Boy".

Following the disbandment of Destiny's Child in June 2005, she released her second solo album, B'Day (2006), which contained hits "Déjà Vu", "Irreplaceable", and "Beautiful Liar". Beyoncé 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)". Beyoncé took a hiatus from music in 2010 and took over management of her career; her fourth album 4 (2011) was subsequently mellower in tone, exploring 1970s funk, 1980s pop, and 1990s soul. Her fifth studio album, Beyoncé (2013), was critically acclaimed and was distinguished from previous releases by its experimental production and exploration of darker themes.

A self-described "modern-day feminist", her 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 17 years, she has won 17 Grammy Awards and sold over 75 million records as a solo artist, and a further 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 Beyoncé 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 2011. In 2014, she ranked atop of Forbes' Celebrity 100 and became the highest-paid black musician in history. She was included in Time magazine's list of the 100 most influential people in the world in 2013 and 2014.

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American singer and songwriter Beyoncé has released five studio albums, four extended plays, four live albums, two compilation albums, forty-two singles (as well as eleven as a featured artist) and eight promotional singles. Having sold 118 million records worldwide, Beyoncé 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 Beyoncé as the Top Certified Artist of the 2000s decade.

Beyoncé's career began as lead vocalist of Destiny's Child, a girl-group which sold 60 million records worldwide. Beyoncé 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, Beyoncé 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, Beyoncé 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 Beyoncé's 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 Beyoncé's 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.

Beyoncé's 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. Beyoncé's 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.


Selected album

Another Beyonce photo - Barcelona 2007.jpg

Dangerously in Love is the debut solo album of American R&B singer Beyoncé, released June 22, 2003 on Columbia Records. Recordings sessions for the album took place during 2002 to March 2003 at several recording studios, amid the hiatus of her former group Destiny's Child. Primarily R&B and soul-oriented, the album is mostly composed of uptempo songs and ballads, and features elements of hip hop and Arabic music. Although Knowles remained discreet about her interpretation of the songs, the lyrics were attributed by music writers to her close relationship with rapper Jay-Z at the time.

Upon its release, Dangerously in Love facilitated Knowles in becoming a viable solo star, as well as one of the most marketable acts in the recording industry. It debuted at number 1 on the U.S. Billboard 200 chart, selling 317,000 copies in its first week. The album became a worldwide commercial success, earning multi-platinum certifications in Australia, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Despite some mixed criticism towards its ballads, Dangerously in Love received generally positive reviews from most music critics and earned Knowles five Grammy Awards. To date, it has sold twelve million copies worldwide.


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"Sweet Dreams" is a song by American R&B singer Beyoncé from her third studio album, I Am... Sasha Fierce (2008). Written and produced by Knowles, James Scheffer, Wayne Wilkins, and Rico Love, the track was released as the album's sixth single. It was released in the United States for the Top 40 and rhythmic contemporary radios on June 2, 2009. Lyrically, the song describes a beautiful relationship, which the singer believes could be a dream.

Originally titled "Beautiful Nightmare", the song leaked in March 2008, eight months prior to the album's release. "Sweet Dreams" received widespread critical acclaim for its "spark", "energy", "dark tone" and "electropop sound", with some critics noting its aural similarities to Michael Jackson's "Beat It". "Sweet Dreams" gained popularity for its electro-pop sound, which is in contrast to her earlier R&B, urban, and funk-tinged releases. The music video was directed by Adria Petty and shot in Brooklyn, New York. The golden robot suit that Knowles wears, was designed by French fashion designer Thierry Mugler. The video was well-received by critics after its premiere on July 9, 2009.

"Sweet Dreams" was promoted by Knowles with live performances during her world tour including her live performance at the 2009 MTV Europe Music Awards on November 5, 2009. The single topped the New Zealand Singles Chart. It peaked inside the top five in Australia, the Czech Republic, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Russia, Slovakia and the United Kingdom. The song went on to be certified Platinum by the ARIA, the RIANZ and the RIAA, and was nominated for the "Viewers Choice Award" at the 2010 BET Awards.


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