Houston Bows Down to Conquering Beyonce
Photos by Robin Harper/Courtesy of Inivision for Parkwood Entertainment/beyoncemediacenter.com
July 15, 2013
Last night, amid the glitter cannons, wobbling, half-naked backup dancers, and umpteen costume changes, Beyonce did the unthinkable: she willingly wobbled her underarm. That's right; sporting a wicked little grin, Queen Bey reached up -- while belting out lyrics about all of her imperfections, no less -- grabbed her underarm, and jiggled a bit of the excess.
Bow down, bitches. That's how this diva shit is done.
It was that type of humanity, not the stage sets or the thousands of rhinestones sacrificed in the name of divadom, that set the Mrs. Carter Show apart from the other enormous pop acts that have hit the stage this summer. Despite that untouchable reputation and blatant wariness of the public's perceptions, Mrs. Carter comes off in concert as being, dare I say, likable.
Adding a bit of humanity to that megastar status seems like it would be a tricky equation, given that by the time that wicked little arm-jiggle happened, she'd set the stage on fire twice while flanked by eight backup dancers, a full horn section, a rockin' chick drummer, three backup vocalists, and a myriad of other stage necessities.
Fortunately for her hive (and me), Queen Bey showed a bit of herself, the one that's beneath the wired skirts and never ending headlines, with ease. Props be damned, Bey is still just a girl from Houston -- albeit just one with a giant voice and two stages -- thankyouverymuch.
And a giant voice she's got. Whoever started that whole backing track rumor can rest at ease; Bey can belt out a note with the best of them, sans any sort of digital support, and she can do so for a massive 24-song set, which is what the Mrs. Carter Show World Tour is clocking in at right now. Twenty-four damn songs. I'd be dead from a lack of oxygen to the brain.
Not Bey, though. She made it clear that after all these years, this is her bag, baby. She pranced -- yes, pranced -- across the stage, belting out hit after hit without ever being off key. No, really.
She bounced from a refreshing "If I Were a Boy"/"Bittersweet Symphony" mashup to a seizure-inducing rendition of "Baby Boy" without ever sounding breathless, all while keeping up with those energetic, semi-twerking backup dancers on every move. I was exhausted, and Queen Bey was just getting started.
And in a move that damn near rivaled the arm-jiggle in badassness, Bey's screens dropped the cover art for "Bow Down/I Been On" and my damn jaw dropped along with them. Yup, she did it. She played a healthy portion of that little ditty, and my Grinch heart grew three times that day. As far as I know, Bey hasn't dared play this semi-controversial song in other cities, but she did it for H-town. I said it above and I'll say it again: bow down, bitches. H-H-town, bitches. Bey was home.