On Sunday April 23, 2016, Beyonce released Lemonade, a ground breaking album that took the whole world off guard. Not only did it break barriers set for women, especially in the music/entertainment industry, it also shed light on the emotional chains of abuse, neglect, and pain that colored women had been silently bearing for generations. The hour-long HBO special challenged political and sociological views, and also forced society to come to face with the harsh reality of police brutality, especially the injustice aimed towards African Americans and the #BlackLivesMatter movement. The 12-track visual album also helped voice and shape a whole culture, addressing issues about cheating, self-identity, sacrifice, motherhood, and beauty standards with beautiful, poetic and aesthetically pleasing visuals. In short, it’s been exactly 1 year since Beyonce had us all shook.
Her sixth studio album, Lemonade is Beyonce’s most critically and world wide acclaimed album. With 653,000 units, the album sailed to No. 1 on the Billboard 200, giving Beyonce her sixth chart-topper. Lemonade has also debuted at No. 1 internationally and went No. 1 on iTunes in 108 countries, being the third album to ever do so. Her songs “Formation”, “Sorry”, “Hold Up”, and “6 Inch ft. The Weeknd” all secured spots in Billboard’s Hot 100 in the Top 20 category making her the first female artist to chart 12 songs on the Hot 100. On February 12th, 2017, Beyonce won 2 Grammys (she now has 24) keeping her in the lead as the first black female artist with the most wins. Lemonade has sold 1.69 million copies in the US and 3 million worldwide, while also grossing a total of $256 million from The Formation World Tour alone.
Lemonade was and forever will be an important album, it’s even inspired college courses. University of Texas at San Antonio professor Dr. Kinitra D uses the album as the entire framework for her course “Black Women, Beyoncé & Popular Culture.” The album strikes at something much deeper, creating a connection amongst black women worldwide. “She’s having a conversation about how black women can heal from pain,” Brooks tells TIME. If you haven’t already, make sure to celebrate this great day and watch Lemonade on HBO, either by yourself or with a group of friends and watch Bey take you on a journey of healing, love, redemption and black girl magic.