The Name Of Beyoncé's New Country Album May Have A Deeper Meaning

The superstar is always moving with intention — and the Beyhive was quick to try to decode the meaning behind the album’s name.
Beyonce leaves the Luar fashion show in Brooklyn during New York Fashion Week.
Beyonce leaves the Luar fashion show in Brooklyn during New York Fashion Week.
James Devaney via Getty Images

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On Tuesday, Beyoncé unveiled the name of her forthcoming country album: “Cowboy Carter.” The album is Act II of a three-part project she recorded amid the pandemic, and she’s not letting up.

After dropping two singles following her Super Bowl commercial, the Houston-bred artist has taken the country industry by storm, ascending to the top of the charts with “Texas Hold ’Em” and taking over the internet with TikTok line dances.

Similarly to her “Act I: Renaissance” release, Queen Bey once again bestowed upon us limited-edition merchandise box sets, replete with a ringer tee, vinyl records and CDs featuring bonus tracks. However, it wouldn’t be a true announcement without some fan speculation, particularly from Beyhive members trying to decode the meaning behind the album’s name.

Some internet sleuths believe that “Cowboy Carter” is more than just a nod to Beyoncé’s married name, Knowles-Carter (as in Shawn Carter, aka Jay-Z). Rather, it could be a very specific reference to Texas country music history, and a reclamation of such as a Black Southern artist.

TikTok user Little Debbie (@beysus.christ) drew a connection between the esteemed Carter Family, known as “The First Family of Country Music,” and Leslie Riddle, a Black guitarist from whom the Carter Family learned signature musical techniques.

“I’m already seeing people hate on Beyoncé for this ‘Cowboy Carter’ Act II, specifically for the name ‘Cowboy Carter’ and saying that it’s basic,” the user said. “Let me tell you the explanation, the reason why the name of Act II is ‘Cowboy Carter.’”


Allow me to enlighten you! Act ii Cowboy Carter, The Carter Family, Leslie Riddle, and whu Bey may be opening in Mexico #actii #cowboycarter #beyonce

♬ original sound - Little Debbie

And let’s not forget one country music icon possibly spilling the beans on the “Cowboy Carter” tracklist. Dolly Parton alluded to the possibility that Beyoncé has incorporated one of her classics into the forthcoming album.

As reported by HuffPost’s Kelby Vera, Parton told the Knoxville News Sentinel in Tennessee: “I think she’s recorded ‘Jolene’ and I think it’s probably gonna be on her country album, which I’m very excited about that.”

If I hear “Jolene” on that album, I will levitate — but let me not jump the gun! Here’s hoping we won’t have to wait until March 29 for all the secrets to be revealed.

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