The official student newspaper of University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire since 1923.

The Spectator

The official student newspaper of University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire since 1923.

The Spectator

The official student newspaper of University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire since 1923.

The Spectator

Spec Sing Along Power Hour: ‘Cowboy Carter’ part II

Beyoncé continues to uncover the country genre

Before starting this article, I want to preface the information in this article as a gathering of research to share with readers. None of the historical insights in this article are my own ideas, just an amalgamation of research on this album. Now back to Beyoncé.

With 27 songs and over an hour of music, this album explores new sounds and uncovers old history. This article will take a slight dive into the second half of the album and try to delve into the sounds and the history. Make sure to read about the first half at

SMOKE HOUR II” is another interlude track that stars country Icon Willie Nelson, a country artist best known for his work outlaw country genre. This 1960s genre was based on restrictions to Nashville sounds. This track gives credibility to Beyoncé through Nelson telling listeners to trust this album and be open to exploration.

JUST FOR FUN” is a full song between Beyoncé and Nelson exploring having fun despite the reactions. Not using this word lightly, these two artists are icons. Everything they do is watched and judged, so being able to just have fun under watchful eyes is brave.

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II MOST WANTED” is another collaboration between Beyoncé and Miley Cyrus. This love song is about young love and jumping on the relationship road, driving forward and living in the journey. The title also references the two superstars singing to each other about love even though everything eventually ends.

LEVII’S JEANS” is the third collaboration in a row between Beyoncé and Post Malone. This track is all about a hot and fiery passion. This song is also an ode to a brand that worked with Destiny’s Child, Beyoncé’s old band. This brand was a rarity, willing to dress the all Black group back in the 1990s. Now fashion houses would kill to dress Beyoncé.

FLAMENCO” is a shorter song about the instability of love. It acts as a song attempting to calm the nerves of someone who lost or is losing a love. The song acts as a reminder to cherish what you have before it’s gone. 

THE LINDA MARTEL SHOW” is another interlude track by Linda Martel. This track introduces the next song “YA YA,” reminding the audience the song and the entire album is an exploration of cross-genre works.

YA YA” is an upbeat song that explores cultural identity and finding joy in a world that puts you down. The song references the Chitlin’ Circuit, a touring group that gave a space for Black musicians to come together and perform. This song and that circuit were a place to celebrate amongst a world constantly tearing them down.

OH LOUISIANA” is an interpolation of Chuck Berry’sOh Louisiana.” This track also plays into the theory that Beyonce’s next album could be rock and roll as Chuck Berry is cited as a pioneer of the genre. Louisiana can also connect to Beyoncé’s mother who is of Louisiana Creole heritage.

DESERT EAGLE” is a song just over a minute and is all about the assurance of a woman within her sexuality. This song explores the power of a confident woman, like the power of a Desert Eagle gun.

RIIVER DANCE” is a song about continuing to dance through the hardships. Beyoncé is known for her perseverance songs, and this track is no exception as dancing is used to face adversity in relationships and society. 

II HANDS II HEAVEN” is the longest song on the album and is split into two different confessions. The first part is a look at faith in the world and struggling to find an understanding of faith itself. The second part is a dedication to love, most likely to Beyoncé’s husband Jay Z, and finding comfort in someone you love.

TYRANT” brings back Dolly Parton, and is an upbeat anthem to explore power and control. The song begins with a hangman that has taken something from the singers, most likely a lover. The song eventually switches to calling the singers tyrants, changing the meaning to explore their strength.

SWEET HONEY BUCKIIN’” brings back Shaboozey to help wind down the album with a song about getting back to your roots. The song explores the strength of being steadfast in your identity and your history. Also accomplished through the background music, an exploration of R&B and country connects multiple hats that make up Beyoncé.

AMEN” is the final song on the album and calls back to the intro “AMERIICAN REQUIEM” as a plea for remembrance and change. With the word ‘mercy’ constantly being pleaded for, this song reaches for listeners to take what they’ve heard and remember there is more to the history of country music than what meets the eye. 

Fisher can be reached at [email protected].

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