Song of the Day #3,128: ‘Freedom’ – Beyoncé

beyonce_lemonadeBeyoncé’s Lemonade has been declared the album of the year by unanimous decree. I don’t think I read a single top ten list that didn’t put the “visual album” at the top, and with good reason.

Nobody else has the power to bend popular culture to her whim the way Beyoncé does. Adele and Taylor Swift might sell more albums, but they don’t inspire hundreds of political and cultural think pieces. They don’t spark protests on both sides of hot button issues.

Lemonade did all of that and it was also a striking piece of music (and film). Beyoncé stretched her sound into new directions, from indie pop to country, and directed a long list of diverse collaborators in the creation of something that feels entirely her own.

It is one of the most personal albums somebody of her stature has ever recorded, diving nakedly into the apparent infidelity of her husband, but it’s also a social and political statement about black life, and particularly the role of black women.

‘Freedom’ is the musical and emotional climax of Lemonade, a rousing gospel barn-burner that segues into the album’s graceful closer, ‘All Night.’ It’s a song about survival, rebirth and the triumph of the righteous.

Kick-ass workout song, too.

[Verse 1: Beyoncé]
Tryna rain, tryna rain on the thunder
Tell the storm I’m new
I’ma walk, I’ma march on the regular
Painting white flags blue
Lord forgive me, I’ve been running
Running blind in truth
I’ma rain, I’ma rain on this bitter love
Tell the sweet I’m new

[Pre-Chorus: Beyoncé]
I’m telling these tears, “Go and fall away, fall away”
May the last one burn into flames

[Chorus: Beyoncé]
Freedom! Freedom! I can’t move
Freedom, cut me loose!
Freedom! Freedom! Where are you?
Cause I need freedom too!
I break chains all by myself
Won’t let my freedom rot in hell
Hey! I’ma keep running
Cause a winner don’t quit on themselves

[Verse 2: Beyoncé]
I’ma wade, I’ma wave through the waters
Tell the tide, “Don’t move”
I’ma riot, I’ma riot through your borders
Call me bulletproof
Lord forgive me, I’ve been runnin’
Runnin’ blind in truth
I’ma wade, I’ma wave through your shallow love
Tell the deep I’m new

[Pre-Chorus: Beyoncé]
I’m telling these tears, “Go and fall away, fall away”
May the last one burn into flames

[Chorus: Beyoncé]
Freedom! Freedom! I can’t move
Freedom, cut me loose!
Freedom! Freedom! Where are you?
Cause I need freedom too!
I break chains all by myself
Won’t let my freedom rot in hell
Hey! I’ma keep running
Cause a winner don’t quit on themselves

[Verse 3: Kendrick Lamar]
Ten Hail Marys, I meditate for practice
Channel 9 news tell me I’m movin’ backwards
Eight blocks left, death is around the corner
Seven misleadin’ statements ’bout my persona
Six headlights wavin’ in my direction
Five-O askin’ me what’s in my possession
Yeah, I keep runnin’, jump in the aqueducts
Fire hydrants and hazardous
Smoke alarms on the back of us
But mama, don’t cry for me, ride for me
Try for me, live for me
Breathe for me, sing for me
Honestly guidin’ me
I could be more than I gotta be
Stole from me, lied to me, nation hypocrisy
Code on me, drive on me
Wicked, my spirit inspired me
Like yeah, open correctional gates in higher desert
Yeah, open our mind as we cast away oppression
Yeah, open the streets and watch our beliefs
And when they carve my name inside the concrete
I pray it forever reads

[Chorus: Beyoncé]
Freedom! Freedom! I can’t move
Freedom, cut me loose!
Freedom! Freedom! Where are you?
Cause I need freedom too!
I break chains all by myself
Won’t let my freedom rot in hell
Hey! I’ma keep running
Cause a winner don’t quit on themselves

[Outro: Kendrick Lamar]
What you want from me?
Is it truth you seek? Oh father can you hear me?
What you want from me?
Is it truth you seek? Oh father can you hear me?
Hear me out

[Spoken: Hattie White]
I had my ups and downs, but I always find the inner strength to pull myself up. I was served lemons, but I made lemonade

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One thought on “Song of the Day #3,128: ‘Freedom’ – Beyoncé

  1. Dana says:

    I really need to watch the video and hear this album.

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