The credits on DJ Khaled’s new album, Khaled Khaled, are just full of surprises. Lil Baby and DaBaby on the same song? Justin Timberlake on any song? A last-minute Cardi B feature? Executive produced by Allah himself? And above all else: Harmonies by the Hive on “Sorry Not Sorry”? The curious feature caught fans’ eyes when Khaled revealed the album’s track list on April 28, with many wondering if it hinted at an appearance by beekeeper extraordinaire Beyoncé herself. (Of course, real heads know the Beyhive is her fans, not the actual Queen Bey, but did any of y’all send vocals to Khaled?) Khaled provided no clarity when discussing his new album with Zane Lowe for Apple Music. “You see the gift I gave to the world,” he said. “Me. Jay-Z. Nas. I got James on the hook. And Harmonies by the Hive. Okay, hold on. Listen. That’s a gift.”
Well, is it? Listen to the album, which dropped April 30, and you’ll hear that yes, Beyoncé does make an appearance on “Sorry Not Sorry.” But “harmonies” is a pretty strong word for it. Bey contributes a single “heyyy” in the middle of her husband’s verse (“Can’t forget ’bout the other Bey,” he raps), plus about 26 seconds of vocalizing with singer James Fauntleroy in the outro. It was enough to get her a writing credit on the song, but not enough to get her on set for the music video. But as Khaled put it in the Apple Music interview, “You know what that is. I haven’t seen that done like this ever.”
Us? We have seen it done like that — in fact, Bey and Jay have collaborated with Khaled twice before, on 2018’s “Top Off” with Future and 2017’s “Shining”; even before that, Khaled opened for Beyoncé on the “Formation” tour in 2016. As for a Jay-Nas teamup? “Sorry Not Sorry” is the first in over a decade, after both joined Ludacris on his 2008 track “I Do It For Hip Hop.” Even the sentiment of the song isn’t new for Beyoncé, who first declared, “Sorry, I ain’t sorry” back in 2016. Nope, the only thing we haven’t seen before here is a “Harmonies by the Hive” credit.