20 Beyoncé Facts Only a Real Beyhive Member Would Know
In order to consider yourself a Beyoncé fan, there are an important set of skills that you need to possess and specific trivia facts that should be stored in your memory. There are some things about Beyoncé that only her biggest fans and supporters will know and some emotions that only those truly obsessed with Queen Bey will feel. Of course you know that Beyoncé's favorite number is four — but do you know why? If you're looking to gain entry into the Beyhive or just freshen up on your facts, keep reading for the 20 things you need to know about Beyoncé.
Beyoncé was born in the Third Ward of Houston.
The Third Ward is one of six historic wards in Houston and became the center of the city's African-American community in the 1970s. Beyoncé portrayed a beauty-pageant queen from the neighborhood in the video for "Pretty Hurts" from her 2013 self-titled album.
It's also the reason Beyoncé frequently throws up this sign:
She is a descendant of Joseph Broussard, the leader of the Acadians during the French and Indian War.
Beyoncé's name is a tribute to Tina Knowles's maiden name of Beyincé. Through Tina, Beyoncé is of Louisiana Creole descent with African, Native American, French, and Irish ancestry. She is the 21st-century descendant of Joseph Broussard (also known as Beausoleil), who was a leader of the Acadian people in the mid-1700s and is considered a hero of the British resistance and French and Indian War.
At 7 years old, Beyoncé won her first talent show, beating 15- and 16-year-olds and receiving a standing ovation.
She sang John Lennon's "Imagine."
"Four" is Beyoncé's favorite number, for many reasons.
Beyoncé was born on Sept. 4. Her mother, Tina Knowles, was born on Jan. 4, and her husband, Jay Z, was born on Dec. 4. Jay Z and Beyoncé got married on April 4, 2008, and got matching "IV" tattoos on their ring fingers. In 2011, she released her fourth studio album, which was titled 4, and in 2012, she named her daughter Blue Ivy, a play on the Roman numeral four.
She has won 20 Grammys and is the most nominated woman in the award's history.
Her pregnancy announcement at the 2011 MTV VMAs earned the Guinness World Book of Records title for "most tweets per second."
Beyoncé officially announced her pregnancy at the end of her performance of "Love on Top" during the 2011 show. It was listed in Guinness World Records for "most tweets per second recorded for a single event" on Twitter, receiving 8,868 tweets per second.
Her 2013 surprise visual album broke an iTunes record that was previously held by one of her friends.
In its first three days on iTunes, the Beyoncé album sold 828,773 copies worldwide and broke the record that was previously held by her collaborator and friend Justin Timberlake.
Beyoncé's vocal range spans 3.6 octaves and is classified as mezzo-soprano.
Her biggest musical influence is Michael Jackson.
Beyoncé considers the late singer her ultimate influence. She went to a Michael Jackson concert (her very first) at 5 years old and realized that she wanted to be a performer. When she presented him with a tribute award at the World Music Awards in 2006, she told the crowd, "If it wasn't for Michael Jackson, I would never ever have performed."
On the fifth anniversary of his death in 2014, Beyoncé shared a heartfelt message to him on her website, writing, "Michael Jackson changed me, and helped me to become the artist I am. Thank you Michael."
In 2007, she became the first nonsupermodel or nonathlete to appear on the cover of Sports Illustrated's Swimsuit Issue.
She was nominated for a Golden Globe for her role in 2006's Dreamgirls.
She's also had starring roles in The Pink Panther, Obsessed, and Austin Powers in Goldmember and portrayed soul singer Etta James in Cadillac Records.
Jay Z's verse on "Crazy in Love" was a last-minute addition to the song.
In a 2011 Billboard interview, Beyoncé reflected on the unexpected success of her 2003 hit "Crazy in Love," saying, "I asked Jay to get on the song the night before I had to turn my album in — thank God he did. It still never gets old, no matter how many times I sing it."
She originally created "Sasha Fierce" to help keep her stage persona separate from who she really is.
In 2006, Beyoncé spoke about her alter ego in an interview, saying that she is "too aggressive, too strong, too sassy, and too sexy," adding, "I wouldn't like Sasha if I met her offstage." She went on to admit that she's not "flirtatious and super-confident and fearless" like Sasha. "I created my stage persona to protect myself so that when I go home I don't have to think about what it is I do," she said, adding, "The people around me know who I really am."
She has struggled with depression.
Beyoncé has talked about battling bouts of depression after Destiny's Child broke up in 2006. She told Parade that year, "I didn't eat. I stayed in my room. I was in a really bad place in life, going through that lonely period: 'Who am I? Who are my friends?' My life changed. I was afraid of making new friends."
In 2010, Beyoncé and her mother, Tina, opened the Beyoncé Cosmetology Center at the Phoenix House Career Academy in Brooklyn.
The center offers an extensive seven-month cosmetology training program for those getting back on their feet after struggling with drug or alcohol addiction. Beyoncé also donated her entire salary from the film Cadillac Records to Phoenix House.
It took six months for Beyoncé to confirm her marriage to Jay Z.
The couple tied the knot in a private NYC ceremony on April 4, 2008. In October of that year, Beyoncé confirmed the nuptials at a listening party for her I Am . . . Sasha Fierce album while discussing recent changes in her life, simply saying, "I'm married now."
She has won a writing award from the New York Association of Black Journalists.
Beyoncé was given the honor for a piece she wrote for Essence magazine titled "Eat, Play, Love," about her global travels during a nine-month career hiatus in 2010. During that time, she visited Europe, the Great Wall of China, the Egyptian pyramids, and Australia and checked out various music festivals, museums, and ballets.
She thought Destiny's Child was too "squeaky clean."
Beyoncé told Newsweek in 2001, "Destiny's Child was always very talented, but I think the thing we were lacking was controversy. I think in order for your group to be successful your story has to be interesting. Our story was very squeaky clean, so I thank God for the controversy. I'm happy because it helps me sell records."
Beyoncé helped inspire Gwyneth Paltrow's live Country Music Awards performance in 2010.
Gwyneth played a country singer in the film Country Strong and made her live television singing debut when she performed "Country Strong" on stage at the CMAs in 2010. She told reporters that she looked to Beyoncé for inspiration, saying, "I studied Beyoncé a lot and her concerts for her kind of confidence . . . and I'm lucky that I know some singers in real life."
She has a species of horse fly named after her.
In January 2012, research scientist Bryan Lessard discovered a previously unnamed species of horse fly found in Northern Queensland, Australia. He named it "Scaptia beyonceae," due to the unique golden hairs on the fly's abdomen — researchers called the specimen the "all-time diva of flies."