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Beyoncé drops powerful surprise single celebrating Black power, beauty, history and resilience

Reiss Smith June 20, 2020
Beyoncé for Ivy Park

Beyoncé has released a new single, Black Parade. (Adidas/Ivy Park)

Beyoncé has released a new song, “Black Parade”, celebrating Blackness in all its forms.

“Black Parade” was announced in typically brief fashion on Instagram.

“Happy Juneteenth Weekend,” Beyoncé wrote, capping off celebrations commemorating the official end of slavery in the US.

“I hope we continue to share joy and celebrate each other, even in the midst of struggle.

“Please continue to remember our beauty, strength and power

Beyoncé added: “‘BLACK PARADE’ celebrates you, your voice and your joy and will benefit Black-owned small businesses.”

The new song arrives with a directory of black owned business, the Black Parade Route, spanning art and fashion to fitness and homeware.

“Being Black is your activism,” Beyoncé added on her website.

“Black excellence is a form of protest. Black joy is your right.”

Proceeds from downloads will benefit Beyoncé’s BeyGOOD Black Business Impact Fund, supporting Black-owned small businesses in need.

The “Black Parade” lyrics, co-written with Jay-Z and other collaborators, take a journey through the Black diaspora, from the Yoruba people of Western Africa and their goddess Yemaya to the singer’s Houston, Texas hometown.

A celebration of Black power, history, beauty and resilience, Beyoncé references the civil rights movement from the 1950s through to today, calling for “reparation for my people”.

“Rubber bullets bouncin’ off me / Made a picket sign off your picket fence,” she sings, referring to the ongoing George Floyd protests.

“Judgin’, runnin’ through the house to my art, all black / Ancestors on the wall, let the ghosts chit-chat.”

Online, the reaction was one of sheer delight.

Beyoncé recently added her voice to those calling for justice for Breonna Taylor, the 26-year-old EMT was shot dead by police who entered her home in Louisville, Kentucky while she sleeping on March 13.

In an open letter to Kentucky attorney general Daniel Cameron, Beyoncé demanded the police responsible for her death be charged.

“There months have passed,” she wrote “and Breonna Taylor’s family still waits for justice. [The] family has not been able to take time to process and grieve. Instead, they have been working tirelessly to tally the support of friends, their community and the country to obtain justice for Breonna.”

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