Music, Showbiz

Diary of a Professional Fangirl feat. Mrs Carter

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Image source: Robin Harper, Beyonce’s Facebook

It is only now – a week after she has left our Emerald Isle that I can muster the strength to write about my tonsillitis-inducing, mammoth Beyoncé three-day extravaganza. If you’ve read anything I’ve written on here before or your timeline has ever suffered from a deluge of ‘yaaaas Gaga’-type appraisals of various female powerhouses, you will be aware of my propensity for obsession. Nigella, Victoria, Cheryl and even Nadine have all been on the receiving end of my Bieberesque fangirl tendencies, but as glamorous X Factor judges and treasured national sweethearts come and go and interest may fluctuate, there has always been one woman whose ferocious presence and impossible perfection has garnered a constant and irrevocable fascination within the confines of my little pop cultured heart. Bey, it’s you. It’s always been you.

Okay, firstly, I need to clear up the tragic logistics, if you can term them as such, that synonymised the extent of my fandom over the last week or so. Beyoncé played in Dublin’s O2 arena for four nights and consider it the duty of a professional fangirl, but I decided to take only one night off (Tuesday, for much-needed vocal rest) and attend three of the four nights. It is undeniably excessive and my dad most definitely didn’t understand my dedication to the cause, but I was determined to edge closer and closer to the stage each night in some misguided fantasy that Bey herself might recognise the inevitable loose spiritual connection between us and invite me to share the stage.

However, and we shall gloss over this extremely quickly, on the third night, I managed to secure a place up front for Bey’s last Dublin date and I can’t deny that I was like one of those annoying friends who ruins a movie for everyone else by spoiling the ending, but I found myself whispering the set-list with some sort of misplaced pride in the knowledge that I knew, “No dear, they’re not playing Countdown, this is just the intro before she breaks into Crazy In Love”, as if I were privy to Bey’s entourage.

Delusions aside, it was during the last song, Halo, when I started to feel strange. During the whole gig, I had noticed young girls fainting, literally unable to cope with their lives as Bey touched their hands or offered them the microphone. I imagined how embarrassing it would be to have to be lifted backstage under such circumstances. Hmmm, cue one probably-not-looking-at-you-at-all stare directly at me from Bey herself and suddenly my vision completely disappears and I find myself in worrying darkness, able to hear everything, but see absolutely nothing. Next thing I know, I too, just like those body-conned, excessively tanned gurlos am being carried backstage moments before the gig ends. I had fainted. HOW. EMBARRASSING?!

Now, in my heart of hearts, I know the reason I fainted was *most likely* because I hadn’t eaten or drank for about seven hours. When that’s juxtaposed with dexterous screaming, shouting and treacherous attempts at singing Love on Top as I was unknowingly suffering from the onslaught of tonsillitis in an extremely hot environment, it doesn’t take a genius to pinpoint the trigger of my demise. But I find it more entertaining and romantic to imagine that I collapsed because I couldn’t cope with Beyoncé Knowles. A true fangirl, if ever there was one. “Jaysis, what would you be screaming for?” asks my dad, who just doesn’t get it, a few days later. Oh, what was I screaming for? LIFE, BEY, PERFECTION, tbh. In hindsight, I wish I had some of my father’s pragmatism, or country cop-on, as I woke up on Thursday morning with a throat that felt like it was being force-fed cut-throat razors and then being punched just for the fun of it. I’ve spent the last few days in bed, primarily trying to recoup health-wise, but also lamenting the loss of that fair lady on the Dublin stage.

Sickness aside, Beyoncé’s 4-day stint in Dublin’s O2 as part of the revamped European leg of her Mrs Carter Show was an electrifying extravaganza that saw the beautiful synergy between old school, classic Beyoncé and 2014’s highly-sexualised, yet powerful Mrs Carter come to explosive fruition. She is, of course, the undeniable queen of balance and she treaded the boards carefully when it came to her reworked set-list following the surprise November release of her self-titled, immensely successful new album. Old favourites such as Crazy in Love and Single Ladies were seamlessly in flow amongst her newer material, such as Partition, Flawless, Drunk in Love et al and the audience lapped up each track with equal eruptive relish.

Quite simply, nobody can put on a show like Queen Bey. Even as a regular audience member, it’s easy to tell that the production is mastered down to a tee and her ease and knowledgeable comfort of the set is thanks in no small part to her running the entire show from its inception right through to being its shining star. She is undeniably her own creative director and the choice to merge Donna Summer’s Love to Love You Baby with Beyoncé’s own Naughty Girl is a clever crowd-pleaser that sees the star of the show seductively tease from an illuminated doorway. She is in control of everything and with The Mrs Carter Show’s heavy focusing on burlesque, the thing Beyoncé is perhaps most in control of is her own sexuality.

It’s easy to make a case and say that a woman who prances about on stage in an embellished leotard singing about ‘grindin’ on that wood’ is far from a feminist, but Bey most definitely is and it’s no pseudo expression either! With a track such as Flawless, Beyoncé’s assertion that she woke up in a state of perfection is perhaps intended as an ironic point of thought meant to signal that she only “woke up like this” because she fought hard for success and her call to “bow down bitches” which was initially derided as anti-feminist, is not her urging other women to bow down to respect her success, but a dig at the oppressors or the ‘haters’, if you’ll excuse the term which has probably lost all significance in the Bieber-dominated semantics of modern-day popular culture. She embraces her sexuality for all that it has to offer, and why shouldn’t she? Of course male lure is an inevitable by-product, but the goal is female empowerment and not male gaze (arguably, the latter isn’t Bey’s target market, anyway). Her feminism might not rise to the levels of the likes of Germaine Greer or Caitlin Moran, but when Beyoncé asks “Who Run The World?” it’s hard to deny, that she isn’t that baddest boss bitch that ever did live. (I think that’s how she’d describe herself, don’t you?)

Beyoncé has been at this game for over 15 years and she can undoubtedly knock out a two-hour, flawless performance as easy as you or I can eat hot dinners. It’s second nature to her, but even after 15 years, nothing feels tired or old. She could easily, with very few complaints have come to the O2 with a slightly remodelled I Am (her 2009 tour) greatest hits-type show and everyone would have jumped for joy as she Naomi Campbell walked her way across the stage to Get Me Bodied, but the Mrs Carter Show was invigoratingly-fresh, raunchily-sexy, nostalgic and at times, tear-jerking, and it was ostensibly Beyoncé at her best. As I finish typing, listening to the beautiful chimes of Irreplaceable, I’m reminded that all other divas that come and go will be appropriately pushed à gauche for Queen Bey, who will always have pride of place. However, next time she’s back, for the sake of my health, I’m gonna mime!

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Music, Ramblings, Showbiz, Television

What I expect from Baby Kimye | Jamie Tuohy

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The announcement that Kayne West and Kim Kardashian are with child is a momentous occasion in the history of celebrity culture. Not since Gwyneth Paltrow gave birth to an Apple has there been so much fuss about a celebrity offspring. Baby Kimye’s arrival will make Harper Beckham’s birth look like a stable delivery, as the Kardashian Klan will almost certainly treat this pregnancy with Messianic expectation. Therefore, with my tongue placed firmly in my cheek, I decided to take a look at what life might have in store for Baby Kimye (which, in case you haven’t copped by now, is thoroughly and wholeheartedly in jest).

Kimberly Ⅱ

Kimberly Ⅱ

THE BABY SHOWER

A televised event, naturally. Baby Kimye will have the baby shower to end all baby showers. Kris will take charge of this, taking Kimye’s predilection for leather into account, incorporating whips, chains and all things bondage into proceedings, paying subtle homage to her daughter’s initiation into the world of celebrity. Sexual, but understated – there are kids around after all. Gifts will include some holistic birthing aids from Kourtney and Scott, Khloe and Lamar will offer themselves as godparents and Kendall and Kylie will make a ‘totally fab’ video to be shown to Baby Kimye when he/she is older. Jay  Z will make an appearance out of respect for his best mate Kanye, but Beyoncé will be washing her weave that day. However, Kelly Rowland will do her best Bey impression and serenade Kim’s tummy with Destiny’s Child classics. Paris Hilton will turn up with some personalised “That’s Hot” baby gifts, but will be refused entry. Poor mite.

THE BIRTH

A paradox – dramatic, yet monotonous. A 2 part E! Special will be dedicated to the event, detailing the moment Kim’s waters break in Baby Gap right through to the moment Kendall films the arrival of Baby Kimye. The hospital room which is filled with the Kardashians and the Wests will erupt into simultaneous shrieking and rapping and as Kim gets her make-up touched up, she will look into Baby Kimye’s eyes and with a hint of emotion, she will smile and declare “how fab!”

THE NAME

The cynic inside me wonders whether Kim got with Kanye simply to continue her family’s frenetic exercise in alliteration. Never has there been a family as dedicated to the letter K as the Kardashian Klan. As Kim is the main breadwinner, one can only hope that Baby Kimye, be it a boy or girl will have a name beginning with the Kardashian’s favourite letter, thus continuing the familial brand. Regardless of gender, I’m feeling something with a hint of white-trash. Something that will look good in lights – possible suggestions include, Kacey, Kassandra, Krystal, Kaden, Kalisha, Kalina, Kalysta, Koko, Kandi, Kassy, Kegan, Kole, Konrad, Kingston, Kipling, Kameron., Kanye 2.0 and KimberlyⅡ.

Or what about a boy? Kanye 2.0

Or what about a boy? Kanye 2.0

THE FIRST BIRTHDAY

Baby Kimye will celebrate his or her first birthday on stage with daddy Kanye and mummy Kim, who will roll out a 10-tier birthday cake to rapturous applause from the arena. Wearing diamond-encrusted ear-muffs and a D&G suit, Baby Kimye will smile for the world’s media and Blue Ivy will strut onto stage to give her best mate a birthday hug. Beyoncé will observe from the wings, having previously instructed baby Blue to walk onto the stage, give the hug and then get off as soon as possible. Baby Blue will stay longer than anticipated, as Kim picks her up in her arms and holds her up to the crowd, because Kim is wearing fur, so she thinks it will be ‘like a super cute Lion King moment.’ Beyoncé will cringe backstage and a part of her may well possibly die.

BABY KIMYE’S FIRST REALITY TV SHOW

Just as Will and Kate’s son will be the most famous royal child, superseding all of the Queen’s other great-grandchildren, Baby Kimye will similarly overshadow young Mason and Penelope Scotland to become the most ubiquitous of Kris’ grandchildren. After making numerous appearances since birth in mummy’s reality TV show, E! executives will decide it’s time to give the then 8-year-old Kimye child his or her first reality TV show which will detail his or her ambitions to become the next Willow Smith, as they try to carve out a career as a rapper. Kanye will advise and there will be a number of special-guest appearances from other well-known celeb offspring. Harper Beckham will stroll in to advise Child Kimye on how to create a totally awesome clothing line for super funky kids. However, Harper will disapprove of Child Kimye’s excessive use of leopard print and sequins in the collection, storming out of the playhouse, as Child Kimye repeatedly refuses her protestations to adopt a more minimalist approach. The first single, with guest vocals from Blue Ivy will mark the beginning of Child Kimye’s path to rebellion, as he/she entitles the single Superstar, unaware of a video his/her mother made some years before he/she entered the world, with the same unfortunate title.

THE TEENAGE YEARS

While Mason and Penelope will have benefited from their boarding-school education in the Hamptons, Kim and Kanye will have home-schooled Teenage Kimye, teaching a variety of necessitous Kardashian/West modules, including “How to live a totally fab life” (Kim’s favourite) and “How to pull off double leather with gold chains”, taught by daddy Kanye. Nicki Minaj will guest lecture with the essential “How not to be a basic bitch” course and at the age of eighteen, Teenage Kimye will turn down a place at UCLA to study Twitter and decide to go it alone in the real world instead. Teenage Girl Kimye will have a brief, but much-documented liaison with any given member of One Direction, after following Kim’s advice to date an older guy. Teenage Boy Kimye will similarly hook up with Rebecca Black, on what will undoubtedly be a dark day for the family. To make it worse, the story will break on a Friday. Kanye will start to worry about his offspring’s street-cred.

kanye and kim

THE FIRST MARRIAGE

Having decided it’s time to settle down at the ripe old age of 22, Kanye 2.0 or Kimberly Ⅱwill get married in a lavish affair on Brooklyn Beckham’s yacht in the Seychelles. The dress code will strictly read ‘real classy, yet sexy. Animal print essential.’ The guests will closely resemble an equatorial rainforest and Mummy and Daddy Kimye will sort it out with the then President Oprah to declare the wedding a national holiday and it will be beamed into billions of television screens across the world. The marriage will appropriately last 72 days. The cycle shall begin again until the now divorced Kanye 2.0 or Kimberly Ⅱ meets his/her prince/princess and begins to produce Kimye Version 3.

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Music, Showbiz

Beyoncé’s Beautiful Video For World Humanitarian Day | Jamie Tuohy

Beyoncé is undoubtedly the best living artist on the planet right now. Forget Gaga or Rihanna, nobody can command a stage like Beyoncé can. Her presence and her vocals are incomparable and she has demonstrated this to perfection in her video for I Was Here – the 2011 track from her album “4”, that she has lent to Word Humanitarian Day.

Word Humanitarian Day, which is taking place today (August 19), is all about people helping people and recognises  those who face challenges and adversity to help others. It was set up to coincide with the anniversary of the 2003 bombing of the United Nations headquarters in Baghdad, Iraq, which killed 22 UN staff.

2012’s campaign is entitled “I Was Here” and its aim is to encourage people to make a positive impact on the lives of others. Beyoncé’s track is the perfect sound for this momentous day, with its touching lyrics and inspiring message. The video was recorded in front of a live audience on August 10 at the United Nations General Assembly

Watch it below:

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Indulgence, Lifestyle, Music, Showbiz

Beyonce and Jay Z are Forbes Top Earning Celeb Couple | Jamie Tuohy

Beyoncé and Jay Z have overtaken Gisele Bündchen and her husband Tom Brady as the world’s top-earning celebrity couple, taking home a whopping $78m in the last year alone.

Proving that even maternity leave can’t impinge on her earnings, according to Forbes’ 2012 list of the highest-paid celebrities, the power-couple have moved from second place to the top spot, thanks to royalties from Beyoncé’s music and House of Dereon fashion line, as well as her husband’s hugely successful collaborative tour, Watch the Throne with Kanye West.

Given that Beyoncé hasn’t worked all that much since giving birth to daughter Blue Ivy, in January of this year, the statistics are even more impressive and she even managed to bring home $2million more than her husband Jay Z, who added $38million to the couple’s wealth.

 

Last year’s top earners, Gisele Bündchen and her NFL player husband Tom Brady brought home an impressive $72million last year, and while Gisele remains as the world’s highest-paid model, both she and Tom were relegated into second place by the superstar musicians.

David and Victoria Beckham rounded up the top three, jumping up one place from last year, with a cool $54million added to the wealth of Brand Beckham. Thanks to David’s endorsement deals and contract with LA Galaxy, combined with the massive success of Victoria’s eponymous dress line, Posh ‘n’ Becks have seen their fortune rise significantly in the last year and Victoria is still raking in the royalties from her Spice Girl days.

Nice work if you can get it!

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Movies, Music, Showbiz

Beyoncé to produce, direct and star in documentary | Jamie Tuohy

She’s already a successful singer, actress, businesswoman and mother and now superstar Beyoncé is about to add director and producer to her resumé. 

Following in the footsteps of Katy Perry, the mother-of-one and Single Ladies singer is to produce, direct and star in a documentary about her life. 

The documentary, which will be the singer’s second directorial feature, (having previously directed a mini MTV documentary about the release of 4) will feature interviews with Beyoncé, exclusive backstage footage, behind-the-scenes clips from the run-up to the release of her album 4, as well as touching moments involving family and friends and daughter Blue Ivy.

The notoriously private singer will also reveal the secrets of her strong relationship with husband Jay-Z and it is believed that the former Destiny’s Child singer has been presenting a 20-minute ‘taster package’ to various Hollywood execs in a bid to find the right distributor for the film.

I think the 30-year-old singer is THE BEST all-round performer on planet earth at the minute (no exaggeration). I don’t know anyone who can sing, dance and put on a mind-blowing show like Beyoncé can. Cannot wait to see this movie – it should be a welcomed antidote to the clichéd concert movies of Justin Bieber et al (Katy Perry’s excluded, because that was actually brilliant: review here http://jamietuohy.com/2012/07/14/review-katy-perry-part-of-me-jamie-tuohy/).

Who Run the World? Clearly Beyoncé.

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Music, Showbiz

BET Awards 2012: Jay-Z, Beyonce and Kanye dominate – Jamie Tuohy

Last night saw a host of Hollywood’s most famous faces descend on LA’s Shrine Auditorium for the 2012 BET Awards. Beyoncé, Jay-Z, Kanye West and Nicki Minaj were the night’s big winners, with Beyoncé winning Best Female R&B artist and her husband  Jay-Z and his best mate Kanye taking home the gong for Best Group with their powerhouse duo, The Throne. Nicki Minaj was presented with the award for Best Female Hip-Hop Artist and Chris Brown took home Best Male Hip-Hop Artist.

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While the main focus of the night was on the evening’s recipients, Kimye did their best to hog the limelight in matching white outfits. TV Queen Kim was spotted chatting to new best mate Beyoncé and sat next to Nicki Minaj for the night – chatting and posing for pictures.

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Bey looked sensational as she accepted her award
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Nicki was thrilled to win her award
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As well as winning one of the night’s top awards, Chris Brown performed, wearing what appeared to me painted on abs. The singer also hinted at retirement, saying his new album “Fortune” will be his last

Whitney Houston was remembered during the night’s proceedings, with her mother Cissy giving a performance of Bridge Over Troubled Water, leaving the Shrine Auditorium in tears. Mariah Carey also paid tribute to the late star, saying “I miss my friend … I miss hearing her voice and laughter”.

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Mariah Carey spoke fondly of her late friend Whitney Houston
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Cissy welled up as she sang a tribute to her late daughter

Amongst the ceremony’s emotional performance’s, Maze featuring Frankie Beverly took home the Lifetime Achievement Award and soul musician D’Angelo gave his first televised performance in over a decade.

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It was a successful night for The Throne duo

Despite the ceremony reading like a who’s who of Hollywood’s elite, it was the ‘Jay-‘Ye-Bey trinity that dominated the night’s proceedings, with Kanye and Jay-Z receiving the award for Video of the Year for Otis and Beyoncé scooping the gong for Video Director of the Year.

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