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Beyoncé Shades CMA Awards Ahead of ‘Cowboy Carter’ Album Drop

James Devaney/GC Images/Getty
James Devaney/GC Images/Getty

Beyoncé has shared her thoughts on the discourse surrounding her upcoming album Cowboy Carter, during what many fans have dubbed her “country era.”

The megastar took to Instagram on Tuesday to reveal the official cover art for Cowboy Carter, due out on March 29. In the same post, she shared a lengthy note about her Renaissance follow-up, including why she’s decided to incorporate country music into her sound.

“This album has been over five years in the making,” Beyoncé wrote. “It was born out of an experience that I had years ago where I did not feel welcomed…and it was very clear that I wasn’t.”

The experience she’s likely referring to is her performance at the 2016 Country Music Awards, where she performed her song “Daddy Lessons” with The Chicks (then known as the Dixie Chicks). The internet erupted at the time, with some country music fans dismayed that she was invited to perform at the awards show. The chief executive of the Country Music Association, Sarah Trahern, told The New York Times that despite the backlash, the organization stood by Beyoncé’s performance.

However that experience was felt on Beyoncé’s end, it seems it may have inspired her to embrace country music on Cowboy Carter, she hinted in her Instagram post.

“Because of that experience, I did a deeper dive into the history of Country music and studied our rich musical archive. ... The criticisms I faced when I first entered this genre forced me to propel past the limitations that were put on me,” she said, noting that the album is “a result of challenging myself, and taking my time to bend and blend genres together to create this body of work.”

“This ain’t a Country album,” she added. “This is a ‘Beyoncé’ album.”

The singer also acknowledged the chart success of her two Cowboy Carter singles “Texas Hold ’Em” and “16 Carriages,” which dropped last month.

“I feel honored to be the first Black woman with the number one single on the Hot Country Songs chart,” she wrote. “That would not have happened without the outpouring of support from each and every one of you.”

She added: “My hope is that years from now, the mention of an artist’s race, as it relates to releasing genres of music, will be irrelevant.”

Name of Beyonce’s New Country Album Revealed

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