Wednesday, April 4, 2018 marks the 10-year wedding anniversary of Beyoncé and Jay Z, two of the biggest superstars of all time. Although the pair kept their relationship and later their marriage a secret in the early days, in recent years, Jay and Bey have opened up more in their music and on social media, giving fans a more in-depth look into their personal lives.
With several ups and downs that have been chronicled in their art, Jay Z and Beyoncé have used music as an outlet for their relationship, reflecting on both the good times and the bad. Along the way, they’ve created some of the most inspiring and profound pieces of their discography in using one another as their inspiration. They’ve also delivered some straight up #relationship jams.
To celebrate Jay and Bey’s 10-year anniversary, we’re looking at their 10 best lyrics about one another.
“Flyer than a piece of paper bearin’ my name / Got the hottest chick in the game wearin’ my chain, that’s right.”
Both in 2003 and in 2018, it’s tough to name a flyer chick in the game than Beyoncé. Jay Z’s reference of the ‘game’ is of course the music industry, but Beyoncé’s fly-ness extends to every industry. “Public Service Announcement” also doubles as one of the first times Jay Z’s publicly addressed his relationship with the young Destiny’s Child singer.
“Put some coloured girls in the MoMA / Half these broads ain’t got nothing on Willona / Don’t make me bring Thelma in it / Bring Halle, bring Penélope and Salma in it / Back to my Beyoncés / You deserve three stacks, word to André / Call Larry Gagosian, you belong in museums.”
On his joint album with Kanye West, Jay celebrated his wife and other women of colour, calling for more diversity in art.
“My man made me feel so goddamn fine!”
We shouldn’t need partners for self-validation, but we also shouldn’t be with people who don’t make us feel so goddamn fine.
“All I need in this life of sin is me and my girlfriend / Down to ride till the very end it’s me and my boyfriend.”
After much speculation, Jay Z and Beyoncé released “03 Bonnie and Clyde” and spent three minutes talking about their loyalty and love for one another. Sorry, their loyalty and love for whoever their boyfriend and girlfriend were at the time…they were talking about each other. It would still take years for the pair to publicly announce their relationship, but at least they gave fans a great song while in the denial phase of dating.
“I was in love with a Sagittarius he blew my mind / He also had a flip side too much like a Gemini / He was freaky like a Taurus the way he handled me yeah / Flirtatious like an Aries / Which sign is best for me?”
A love song about astrology signs is the kind of writing that comes from someone in the goofy, honeymoon stage of love, which is why we still jam to Beyoncé’s “Signs.” Then 22-years-old, Bey was young and in love with a man born in December. We imagine the first draft of the lyrics for “Signs” used a heart over the letter ‘i.’
“Still love the way he talk, still love the way I sing / Still love the way he rock them black diamonds in that chain / Still all up on each other, ain’t a damn thing change / My girls can’t tell me nothing, I’m gone in the brain.”
Bey sings about keeping the passion alive with her husband after three years of marriage in her 2011 single “Countdown.”
“Yeah, I’ll fuck up a good thing if you let me / Let me alone, Becky / A man that don’t take care his family / Can’t be rich / I’ll watch Godfather, I miss that whole shit / My consciousness was Michael’s common sense / I missed the karma, that came as a consequence”
Showing they were putting the past behind them, Jay Z publicly apologized to his wife for his infidelity on “Family Feud,” which also featured vocals by Beyoncé. The track is an important reminder that fame and wealth are irrelevant if you hurt the people you love on your way to the top.
“He better call Becky with the good hair.”
Great songs can be born out of love, but they can also come from a place of anger. Case in point, Beyoncé’s no-holds-barred takedown of Jay Z and his affair on 2016’s “Sorry.” Boy, bye.
“I apologize, our love was one for the ages and I contained us / And all this ratchet shit and we more expansive / Not meant to cry and die alone in these mansions / Or sleep with our back turned / We supposed to vacay ’til our backs burn/ We’re supposed to laugh ’til our heart stops / And then meet in a space where the dark stop / And let love light the way.”
Jay Z’s title track from 2017’s 4:44 was a response to his wife’s Lemonade album, with the rap mogul admitting that he had cheated and put a strain on their marriage. In the haunting and moving single, Jay apologizes for his indiscretions as well as how he handled the beginning of the couple’s relationship and the eventual fall out from his affair.
“And your heart is broken / Cause I walked away / Show me your scars / And I won’t walk away / And I know I promised that I couldn’t stay, baby / Every promise don’t work out that way”
When Beyoncé’s stunning visual album Lemonade was released on HBO in 2016, fans were unsure of whether the singer’s marriage to rapper Jay Z would survive by the final song. It wasn’t until the performance of “Sandcastles,” which also featured Jay in the visuals, that fans knew the pair had made the decision to move forward with their relationship. “Sandcastles” is not only one of the most raw and honest songs Bey has ever delivered, it also gave her millions of fans a song they could relate to about the trials of love.