In a cover story for Vogue’s September issue, the superstar opened up about how her family history is filled with dysfunctional relationships between men and women.
“I come from a lineage of broken male-female relationships, abuse of power, and mistrust,” the 36-year-old singer shared, adding that the complicated process of rebuilding her relationship with JAY-Z, 48, following his past infidelity was only possible once she was able to come to terms with her family’s past.
“Only when I saw that clearly was I able to resolve those conflicts in my own relationship,” she said, explaining that “connecting to our past and knowing our history makes us both bruised and beautiful.”
Opening up about the complicated nature of her family tree, Beyoncé went on to share that her ancestors descended from a slave owner.
“I researched my ancestry recently and learned that I come from a slave owner who fell in love with and married a slave,” she told Vogue, adding that it took a lot of time to “process that revelation.”
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However, after questioning “what it meant,” she was able to put her past “into perspective.”
“I now believe it’s why God blessed me with my twins,” she said. “Male and female energy was able to coexist and grow in my blood for the first time. I pray that I am able to break the generational curses in my family and that my children will have less complicated lives.”
The singer went on to share the surprising way one of her twins inspired the direction of her powerful Coachella performance.
“I had a clear vision for Coachella. I was so specific because I’d seen it, I’d heard it, and it was already written inside me,” she said.
“One day I was randomly singing the black national anthem to Rumi while putting her to sleep. I started humming it to her every day,” she explained. “In the show at the time I was working on a version of the anthem with these dark minor chords and stomps and belts and screams.”
But “after a few days of humming the anthem, I realized I had the melody wrong,” she added.
“I was singing the wrong anthem,” she continued, opening up about how that one change made for one of “the most rewarding parts of the show.”
“I swear I felt pure joy shining down on us. I know that most of the young people on the stage and in the audience did not know the history of the black national anthem before Coachella. But they understood the feeling it gave them,” she shared. “It was a celebration of all the people who sacrificed more than we could ever imagine, who moved the world forward so that it could welcome a woman of color to headline such a festival.”