EAST RUTHERFORD, NEW JERSEY - JULY 29: (Editorial Use Only) (Exclusive Coverage) Beyoncé performs onstage during the "RENAISSANCE WORLD TOUR" at MetLife Stadium on July 29, 2023 in East Rutherford, New Jersey.
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Everything to Know About Beyonce's Upcoming Country Album 'Act II'

It won't be Beyonce's first rodeo.

In one of the most intricate album announcements in the history of the music business, Verizon's Super Bowl commercial in which Beyonce tried to break the internet through grandiose means culminated with the release of two digital singles. Both "Texas Hold 'Em" and "16 Carriages" up the country twang and western music vibes heard in the past from Beyonce without pivoting completely from the musical road map that's made her a global pop celebrity.

She's since shared that the songs will appear on her new album Act II, which is out on March 29. It'll be the eighth solo studio album by Beyonce and her first foray into country music.

A Houston, Texas native, Beyonce (full name Beyoncé Giselle Knowles-Carter) has dabbled in country before, most famously with 2016's "Daddy Lessons." Her country crossover moment in the making comes at the same time as teases that Post Malone and other pop peers intend to make a similar career pivot.

As of Feb. 13, we've heard two songs, got a release date for the album and seen a trailer posted by Beyonce to Instagram. Here's a deeper dive into what we do know. Check back between now and March 29 for any updates on Queen Bey's country album.

The Big Announcement

INGLEWOOD, CALIFORNIA - SEPTEMBER 01: (Editorial Use Only) Beyoncé performs onstage during the "RENAISSANCE WORLD TOUR" at SoFi Stadium on September 01, 2023 in Inglewood, California.

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At first, the Verizon spot felt like nothing more than a hilarious Super Bowl ad in which Beyonce fantasized about becoming Barbie send-up "BarBey" and "the first woman to launch the first rocket for the first performance in space."

By the end, the intention becomes clear. For the second Sunday in a row, a major album got announced by a century-defining superstar during a live CBS broadcast. Back on Feb, 4, Beyonce confidant Taylor Swift stunned Grammys viewers by unveiling plans for The Tortured Poets Department (out April 19).

Not long after the huge announcement, a trailer got posted to social media that identified the album's name (Act II) and release date (March 29).

The Follow-Up to Renaissance

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA - FEBRUARY 04: (L-R) Beyoncé and Jay-Z attend the 66th GRAMMY Awards at Crypto.com Arena on February 04, 2024 in Los Angeles, California.

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Per past revelations by Beyonce, Act II is likely titled as such because it's a follow-up to her 2022 album Renaissance.

"This three act project was recorded over three years during the pandemic," she wrote in a since-deleted post on her website (as quoted by People). "A time to be still, but also a time I found to be the most creative. Creating this album allowed me a place to dream and to find escape during a scary time for the world. It allowed me to feel free and adventurous in a time when little else was moving. My intention was to create a safe place, a place without judgment. A place to be free of perfectionism and overthinking. A place to scream, release, feel freedom. It was a beautiful journey of exploration."

The First Two Songs

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA - FEBRUARY 04: (L-R) Kacey Musgraves and Beyoncé attend the 66th GRAMMY Awards on February 04, 2024 in Los Angeles, California.

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Two songs debuted on Tidal on Super Bowl Sunday shortly before becoming widely available through other streaming services.

"Texas Hold 'Em" begins with folksy banjo accompaniment before blossoming into an amalgam of pop, country and gospel influences. On "16 Carriages," Beyonce tells a compelling story with western imagery. Musically, the stomp-along vibes conjure images of cowboy boots and spurs.

Past Forays Into Country Music

NASHVILLE, TN - NOVEMBER 02: Beyonce performs onstage with Martie Maguire of Dixie Chicks at the 50th annual CMA Awards at the Bridgestone Arena on November 2, 2016 in Nashville, Tennessee.

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Any artist enjoying country music or wanting to tap into it as a storytelling medium shouldn't be a surprise, whether or not they're from the home of the Houston Rodeo. Besides, Beyonce's dipped her toes in country music already.

Her 2016 single "Daddy Lessons" got lauded in its time as a country song. Indeed, country and zydeco instrumentation informed the backing track of what's very much an example of country storytelling and myth making.

A remix featuring The Chicks followed that same year. The trio joined Beyonce for a live performance at the 2016 CMA Awards. The moment caused some controversy, with Alan Jackson reportedly walking out during the segment and Travis Tritt being among the artists to criticize the CMA producers for scheduling the performance.

Beyond Nashville, the Recording Academy's country music committee rejected "Daddy Issues" as a candidate for country-specific Grammy categories.

Time will tell if Beyonce's newest country songs will be more accepted this time around by the country music industry.

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