On Friday, June 19, Beyoncé surprised fans with a new tune. In celebration of Juneteenth — the holiday that commemorates the day the last formally enslaved people learned of their legal freedom in Galveston, Texas in 1865 — Beyoncé's new song "Black Parade" was released by surprise. The tune is a total celebration of Black culture and Bey's roots, and it is also helping raise awareness for Black-owned businesses.
Beyoncé's new song, "Black Parade," uses the same name as a new initiative on her website, which she launched prior to the song's release, called "Black Parade Route," which advocates for Black-owned businesses. The singer announced the song drop on Instagram, writing, "Happy Juneteenth Weekend! I hope we continue to share joy and celebrate each other, even in the midst of struggle." Beyoncé continued, "Please continue to remember our beauty, strength, and power._'BLACK PARADE' celebrates you, your voice, and your joy and will benefit Black-owned small businesses."
Her new bop, "Black Parade," is her first new solo tune following her work on The Lion King companion album The Gift in 2019. The song is a celebration of Black culture, which is immediately evident when listening to the lyrics, which are full of cultural symbolism, nods to Beyoncé's success and fanbase, and the recent Black Lives Matter protests.
For instance, the first verse begins with pride for her roots: "I'm goin' back to the South / I'm goin' back, back, back, back / Where my roots ain't watered down / Growin', growin' like a Baobab tree." Later, in the second verse, Queen Bey nods her support to Black-owned businesses, in the lyrics, "Yeah, yeah, I'm for us, all black / All chrome (Yeah), black-owned (Yeah) / Black tints (Yeah), matte black (Yeah, yeah)." She also brings up the recent Black Lives Matter protests in the verse, singing, " Rubber bullets bouncin' off me (Ah) / Made a picket sign off your picket fence (Ah)."
Fans are already losing it over the surprise release:
On her website initiative, "Black Parade Route," she wrote a similar call to action for her fans. "Happy Juneteenth. Being Black is your activism. Black excellence is a form of protest. Black joy is your right." She continued, "'Black Parade' benefits BeyGOOD's Black Business Impact Fund, administered by the National Urban League, to support Black-owned small businesses in need."
The Black Parade site showcases a large directory of Black-owned businesses, including everything from restaurants to wellness, and lifestyle to beauty, and in between.
You can listen to Beyoncé's new song, "Black Parade," on all streaming platforms now.