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Beyonce: music’s golden girl

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Beyonce: music's golden girl

Beyonce, the music royal whose art has shifted the culture time and again, long ago cemented herself as one of the world’s seminal stars.

On Sunday, she made history again, becoming the winningest artist in Grammys history, surpassing the late classical conductor Georg Solti’s long-standing record of 31 lifetime trophies.

Speaking through tears, the regal artist donning a metallic Gucci corset gown with elbow-length black leather gloves thanked her family, including her three children and husband Jay-Z, who looked on from the crowd.

“I’m trying not to be too emotional. And I’m trying to just receive this night,” she said.

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She paid special tribute to the queer community, who she credited with inventing the genre she celebrated in her historically layered record that pays homage to pioneers of funk, soul, rap, house and disco.

But to the shock of everyone and the fury of fans on social media, Beyonce — whose tour announcement is virtually guaranteed to trigger a ticketing crash for the ages — missed out on the Album of the Year award.

This time, it went to British pop phenom Harry Styles, six years after she lost the award to Adele.

She has also never won Record of the Year, despite having the most nods ever for the category, with eight.

So the Beyonce paradox lives on: the same night she further burnished her GOAT — greatest of all time — status, the legendary artist also lengthened her streak as the Recording Academy’s most snubbed nominee.

Queen Bey

Born Beyonce Giselle Knowles in Houston, Texas, the now 41-year-old has been in the upper echelons of pop music since her teenage years.

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She initially rose to fame as part of the girl group Destiny’s Child — whose smash hits included “Survivor” AND “Say My Name” — before embarking on a wildly successful solo career.

From setting the standard for the overnight album drop to delivering her earth-shattering “Homecoming” show at Coachella in 2018, Beyonce has long bucked the industry’s conventional wisdom, and is simultaneously one of music’s most private and most-watched stars.

Her paradigm-shifting 2016 album “Lemonade,” which emphasized Black womanhood against the backdrop of America’s heritage of slavery and culture of oppression, remains one of the most venerated musical projects in recent memory.

Then she dropped the critically acclaimed song “Black Parade” in June 2020, amid nationwide protests ignited by the murder of an unarmed Black man, George Floyd, at the hands of a white police officer.

“She’s arguably the most culturally important artist in the world,” Merck Mercuriadis, the music publishing mogul who was once Beyonce’s manager, told AFP at a pre-Grammy gala.

“Renaissance,” her house-tinged 2022 dance record, offered a pulsating, sweaty collection of club tracks.

Eminently danceable and rife with nods to disco and EDM history, the 16-song album was an instant hit and earned wide praise for its deep ambition.

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Prior to releasing her opus, Beyonce had dropped the single “Break My Soul” to acclaim, setting the tone for her house revival that highlighted the Black, queer and working-class artists and communities who molded the electronic dance genre, which first developed in Chicago in the 1980s.

Beyond her music, she is a fashion icon — she actually was named just that by the Council of Fashion Designers of America in 2016 — with her own athleisure line Ivy Park. She has appeared in a handful of films including “Dreamgirls.”

She sang Etta James classic “At Last” for Barack and Michelle Obama at an inaugural ball in 2009, and then belted out the national anthem at his second inauguration in 2013. She has twice performed at halftime of the Super Bowl.

According to Forbes, her net worth as of last year was $450 million.

‘Artist of our lives’

Despite losing the Album and Record of the Year Grammys for what feels like the umpteenth time, the outpouring of love from her peers on Sunday made clear it was still Beyonce’s night.

“You never know with this, you know, this stuff,” a sheepish Styles told journalists backstage, when asked if he had also expected a Beyonce triumph for top album.

“I don’t think you can look at any of the nominees and not feel like they deserve it.”

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And Lizzo, who bested Queen Bey for Record of the Year, delivered a heartfelt tribute to one of her idols, challenging the audience to keep their eyes dry.

“In the fifth grade, I skipped school to see you perform,” she said at the podium, speaking directly to a clearly touched Beyonce.

“You changed my life,” she continued, Beyonce’s eyes also welling up. “The way you make me feel, I was like, I want to make people feel this way with my music. So thank you so much.”

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Kareena ignores Shahid Kapoor at award show

Kareena ignores Shahid Kapoor at award show

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Kareena ignores Shahid Kapoor at award show

The Dadasaheb Phalke International Film Festival Awards (DPIFF) 2024 took place in Mumbai on Feb 20. 

On the red carpet, exes Kareena Kapoor Khan and Shahid Kapoor had an awkward encounter, which is now going viral on social media.

It looks like Kareena ‘royally’ ignored Shahid and went on to pose for the paparazzi.

The viral video, which is now doing the rounds, shows Shahid Kapoor holding a trophy in his hands and posing with director duo Raj and DK.

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As the photo session was underway, Kareena Kapoor arrived and greeted the directors as she moved past them to pose for the paparazzi.

Shahid Kapoor and Kareena Kapoor Khan’s past relationship has always made headlines.

The two worked in superhit films like ‘Jab We Met’ and ‘Udta Punjab’. In several interviews, they have spoken about sharing a cordial relationship after they moved on with their respective lives.

But, the recent video seems to indicate otherwise.

Work-wise, Kareena Kapoor Khan will be seen next in ‘The Crew’ and ‘Singham Again’. Shahid Kapoor’s upcoming release is ‘Deva’, which is currently under production.

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Faryal Makhdoom threatens to expose ITV after CBB axe

Faryal Makhdoom threatens to expose ITV after CBB axe

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Faryal Makhdoom threatens to expose ITV after CBB axe

Faryal Makhdoom has threatened to expose ITV after she was dropped from Celebrity Big Brother, just days before the show airs.

The wife of Amir Khan was reportedly signed up for the show.

However, Faryal later said Celebrity Big Brother axed her over her pro-Palestine views on social media.

On Instagram, Faryal said: “As many of you know, I was offered to do a show for which the producers had offered me a few years ago and I had previously refused.

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“This time, they made a very lucrative offer and after a lot of convincing, I finally agreed to sign for the show.

“I also wanted to do this show to make it more inclusive for the Muslim community.

“But it seems from my social media activity and being pro-Palestine is not appropriate for ITV and its sponsors.

“Mind you, ITV and this particular show has had many controversial people on it before, but for some reason, I was singled out.

“I was told to step down 10 days before going in.

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“I have never in my life been treated like this. It’s a violation of free speech.

“This is why cowards with a huge following (especially Muslims) refuse to speak on this issue because they deprive you of opportunities and so you have no choice but to support them and stand them.

“Bear in mind, I was offered substantial money not to speak on this issue but I rejected it.

“For me, no amount of money will ever stop me from speaking on the injustice happening in Palestine.”

ITV responded and denied Faryal’s claims, with a spokesperson saying: “We meet numerous prospective housemates when casting for Celebrity Big Brother, however the final lineup is not confirmed until closer to transmission.

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“As per our welfare protocols, we are unable to comment on the casting process for individual prospective Housemates, other than to say that suitability to participate is determined by a number of factors.”

Faryal hit back, sharing what appeared to be a screenshot of her contract between herself and Celebrity Big Brother producer Banijay.

She wrote: “Attempting to downplay a situation when I have my contract right here.”

In another post, she said: “Do better with the lies ITV.

“I had gone through all of the relevant and necessary assessments, including a mental health assessment.

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George Michael honoured with UK collectible coin

George Michael honoured with UK collectible coin

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George Michael honoured with UK collectible coin

Late British singer-songwriter George Michael is being honoured with a personalised collectible coin.

Britain’s Royal Mint said on Monday the new coin, which depicts Michael wearing his trademark sunglasses, pays tribute to the music star’s 1987 hit solo single “Faith”.

Officially approved by Michael’s estate, it was designed by artist and sculptor Sandra Deiana.

“From his debut with WHAM! to becoming one of the bestselling solo musicians of all time, George Michael is a global superstar whose work has inspired and influenced generations with his music and his unique style,” said Rebecca Morgan, director of Collector Services at The Royal Mint.

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“Loved by millions of fans worldwide, we are delighted to be introducing an official UK coin celebrating his life and legacy,” she said in a statement.

Michael, who rose to stardom in the 1980s with Wham! before embarking on a successful solo career, died on Christmas Day in 2016 at the age of 53.

Wham!’s enduring 1984 festive song “Last Christmas” finally secured the “Christmas Number 1” spot for the first time on the UK music charts in December, 39 years after its release.

The new coin is the latest addition to the Royal Mint’s “Music Legends” series, which has previously honoured David Bowie, Elton John and Queen with coins, and will be available to purchase from Monday.

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