Beyoncé and Solange – A Sisterly Dynamic Duo
As we all know, singing legend Beyoncé has released many top hit albums since her career in music began. Her album before last, self-titled Beyoncé, was released in 2013 without a public announcement. So for her next album, fans didn’t know what to expect. Fans also didn’t know it would be an album released by Beyoncé’s sister Solange either. Both the sisters released albums, and both of those albums became number one on the Billboard 200 in the same year. Michael and Janet Jackson Master P and Silk the Shocker also achieved the same sibling success of having number one albums in the same year. Although the Knowles sisters are not the first siblings to achieve this success, it’s still rare and something to be acknowledged.
Beyoncé has achieved six number one selling albums in total, including her latest achievement, Lemonade. The visual album was released April 23, 2016 by Parkwood Entertainment and distributed through Columbia Records. Besides being released as physical copies, the album was also made available for online streaming through Tidal, which Beyoncé co-owns. After the release of Lemonade, a one-hour film of the same name aired on HBO. The album and film both paid tribute to Beyoncé’s family, expressed the strength in black women, and reflected her Southern origin. Lemonade debuted at number one on the US Billboard 200 and sold 485,000 copies in its first week. The single “Formation” won in three categories at the 2016 BET Awards for Video of the Year, the Centric Award, and the Viewer’s Choice Award. The album received 11 nominations, the most a Beyoncé album has received in a single year. To promote her album, Beyoncé went on tour in April and just recently completed the tour in October of 2016.
Lemonade has a total of 12 tracks and four collaborations featuring musicians such as Jack White, The Weekend, and Kendrick Lamar.
Solange has four albums with the most recent one being her first number one, A Seat at the Table, which was released by Saint, a record label she owns, and Columbia Records. This is quite impressive considering the number one album was not announced until September 27, only three days before it was released. The album is her first since she released True in 2012. Along with the album, Solange created a poetry book of lyrics and photos with the same name, which is available on her website. Solange worked incredibly hard on her album and admitted how she even suffered a breakdown due to the amount of time and emotion she was putting into the recording process. The album expresses rage about racism going on in today’s society, but it also encourages empowerment in women. In the first week, the album had 72,000 sales in the U.S. and was streamed more than 35 million times across music platforms. The album will most definitely have plenty award nominations in the near future.
A Seat at the Table has a total of 21 tracks and eight collaborations featuring musicians such as Lil Wayne, Sampha, and Kelly Rowland.
Of course, there has been the comparison between the two sister’s albums. In Fader magazine, Solange responds to this by explaining how she and Beyoncé grew up in the same household and how their parents are the reason they’re so in touch with the black community, and how they are sensitive to what’s going on in today’s society, as well as stating that they want their voices to reflect those societal issues.
It’s so easy for Solange to be considered underrated compared to her superstar sister Beyoncé. A Seat at the Table shows Solange as a superstar in her own right, working hard for her own achievements. It’s no secret that Beyoncé has been a high achieving artist since the beginning of her career, and it’s hard to dissociate Solange from her older sister, but Solange has shown that she is so much more. The sisters are both high achievers and truly a dynamic duo.