Beyonce Talks Being A Risk Taker, New Album ‘4’ and Empowering Women

Beyonce is getting ready to take the industry by storm with the release of her forthcoming fourth solo studio album “4.” Lead by the first single “Run the World (Girls),” the R&B diva tells Billboard of the disc title, “We all have special numbers in our lives, and 4 is that for me. It’s the day I was born. My mother’s birthday, and a lot of my friends’ birthdays, are on the fourth; April 4 is my wedding.

In the exclusive Billboard interview about her next phase, Beyonce is focused on pushing industry limits, while constantly evolving and the lead single “Run the World (Girls)” is the new anthem for this chapter in her career.

“That’s what I always want to do – I’m attracted to songs that will become a dinner conversation! [laughs] With “Single Ladies,” clearly I’d just gotten married, and people want to get married every day – then there was the whole Justin Timberlake thing [recreating the video] on “Saturday Night Live,” and it was also the year YouTube blew up,” B tells the mag. “With “Irreplaceable,” the aggressive lyrics, the acoustic guitar, and the 808 [drum machine] – those things don’t typically go together, and it sounded fresh. “Crazy in Love” was another one of those classic moments in pop culture that none of us expected. 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.”

As far as “Run the World (Girls),” Beyonce Adds: “It’s definitely riskier than something a bit more…simple. I just heard the track and loved that it was so different: it felt a bit African, a bit electronic and futuristic. It reminded me of what I love, which is mixing different cultures and eras — things that typically don’t go together — to create a new sound. I can never be safe; I always try and go against the grain. As soon as I accomplish one thing, I just set a higher goal. That’s how I’ve gotten to where I am.”

It definitely takes a lot of risk to garner worldwide success and with the achievements come a sense of female empowerment for Beyonce.

“Power means happiness, power means hard work and sacrifice,” says Beyonce. “To me, it’s about setting a good example, and not abusing your power! You still have to have humility: I’ve seen how you can lead by example, and not by fear. My visit to Egypt was a really big inspiration for me. Once the sun went down, I saw not one woman; it was shocking and fascinating to me, because it was so extreme. I saw thousands of men walking down the street, socializing in bars, praying in mosques – and no women. I felt really proud when I performed and saw the strength that the women were getting through the music. I remember being in Japan when Destiny’s Child put out “Independent Women,” and women there were saying how proud they were to have their own jobs, their own independent thinking, their own goals. It made me feel so good, and I realized that one of my responsibilities was to inspire women in a deeper way.”

Read the rest of Beyonce’s Interview on Billboard.com

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