Beyoncé Says A Bad Experience Inspired New Album — And We Can Guess What It Is

With 10 days left until the release of “Cowboy Carter,” Beyoncé hinted at which major moment in her career inspired her to create the highly anticipated country album.

In an Instagram post about her journey into the country music industry, the superstar said Tuesday that her new album has been in the works for more than five years.

But despite having won 32 Grammys over the course of her career so far, the singer said this country album “was born out of an experience that I had years ago where I did not feel welcomed…and it was very clear that I wasn’t.”

While Beyoncé did not explicitly say which experience, we can probably infer which one.

In 2016, Beyoncé made headlines for her appearance at the CMA Awards, performing her country pop song, “Daddy Lessons,” alongside The Chicks. Despite the powerful performance receiving a positive reaction from the crowd at the time, Beyoncé faced racist backlash from some country fans angry that she, a proud Black Texan, was allowed to sing at the show.

“But, because of that experience, I did a deeper dive into the history of Country music and studied our rich musical archive,” the singer wrote in the Instagram caption. “It feels good to see how music can unite so many people around the world, while also amplifying the voices of some of the people who have dedicated so much of their lives educating on our musical history.”

Beyoncé dropped two singles from the album on Feb. 11 during the Super Bowl. One of those singles, “Texas Hold ’Em,” propelled her to become the first Black woman to land at No. 1 on the Hot Country Songs chart. The star’s foray into country music — a genre pioneered by Black Americans in the South — has already angered conservatives and received a mixed response from country radio, which notoriously plays mostly white male artists.

“The criticisms I faced when I first entered this genre forced me to propel past the limitations that were put on me,” she said in the caption, adding that the new album “is a result of challenging myself, and taking my time to bend and blend genres together to create this body of work.”

“Cowboy Carter” is the second act in a three-part project, with the first part being her massively successful “Renaissance” album. “Renaissance” served as a reclaiming of American dance music, particularly house music, for Black people, and the Beyhive believes that “Cowboy Carter,” out on March 29, will be a similar genre reclamation.