a seat at the knowles table

Just Reading Solange and Beyoncé Talking About Being Strong Women Will Automatically Make You Stronger

Balmain And Olivier Rousteing Celebrate After The Met Gala - Inside
We don’t deserve them. Photo: Nicholas Hunt/Getty Images for Balmain

Being a black woman in the music industry requires unimaginable strength and patience. Beyoncé and Solange transcend both qualities, demonstrating superhuman power with every career move. For their latest, Solange has picked Beyoncé to conduct the interview for Solange’s Interview cover story. It’s an intimate talk between sisters that touches on everything from growing up together in Houston, collaborating professionally with their significant others, the making of A Seat at the Table, and Solange’s indisputably “dopest wedding photo of all time” (as declared by Bey). But above all, it’s a conversation between two strong women about having to be strong to be women working in music. For Solange, the experience has meant learning to fully own her authorship. “One thing that I constantly have to fight against is not feeling arrogant when I say I wrote every lyric on this album. I still have not been able to say that. That’s the first time I’ve actually ever said it, because of the challenges that we go through when we celebrate our work and our achievements,” she tells Beyoncé. “I remember Björk saying that she felt like, no matter what stage in her career, if a man is credited on something that she’s done, he’s going to get the credit for it. And, unfortunately, that still rings true. It’s something I’ve learned so much about from you, getting to be in control of your own narrative.”

Unsurprisingly, the Knowles sisters credit having perfected their unwavering confidence to their mother, Tina Lawson. (“You’ve got to love Mama Tina,” Bey correctly notes.) Solange continues: “At this point, it should be an expectation, not something that you’re asking permission for. I feel like I’m getting closer to that, not taking on all the baggage when I have to just stand up for myself and say, ‘No, I’m uncomfortable with that.’ And I really appreciate you and mom being examples of that, being able to speak about our achievements, these things that deserve to be celebrated, without feeling bashful.” Beyoncé and Solange will next put their strength on display as two of the only women headlining festivals this summer at Coachella and Panorama, respectively.

Solange and Beyoncé on Being Strong Women