Beyonce - 4
Beyonce's fourth solo studio album was recorded over a year between the spring of 2010 and the spring of 2011, while she took time away from the spotlight.
She engaged in what she describes as simple things, including listening to every kind of music she truly enjoys. Her mixed musical gumbo is displayed on the album.
"I wanted to do something refreshing and different. So I mixed genres and drew inspiration from touring, traveling, watching rock bands, and attending festivals… I was like a mad scientist, putting lots of different songs together," she said.
So inspiration came from artists as diverse as Fela Kuti, '90s R&B, Earth, Wind & Fire, DeBarge, Lionel Richie, Teena Marie, The Jackson 5, New Edition, Adele, Florence and the Machine, and Prince.
Vocally she was equally adventurous.
"I used a lot of the brassiness and grittiness in my voice that people hear in my live performances, but not necessarily on my records," she explained.
The album title signifies not only the artist's fourth solo offering and the day of her birth but it is also a personal gift to her fans. For over a year her fans around the world took to their social media pages urging her to name the album for her special number.
'4' was preceded by the single 'Run The World (Girls)', accompanied by a Francis Lawrence-directed video that boasts a cast of over 200 dancers, a menagerie of exotic animals, and Beyoncé as the leader of a stunning army of women.
Release Date : 28 Jun 2011