"I was terrified," Bey said of surprise release.
Even as one of the world's biggest stars, Beyoncé still fears failure.
Queen Bey opened up about her worries and more during a New York City screening of the music videos from her self-titled album, Saturday (Dec. 21). The surprise release, which went on to earn Mrs. Carter her highest debut numbers and platinum status in less than a week, initially frightened the Houston singer. "I was terrified. I was so scared," she admitted to a crowd at the School of Visual Arts. "I already envisioned like the worst things that could happen."
The 14-track, 17-video "visual album" dropped Dec. 13, with features from Drake, Frank Ocean and Jay Z plus production by way of elite beat crafters like Timbaland, Pharrell and The-Dream. Part of the motivation of her non-conventional unveil was wanting to stir things up, the 32-year-old added. "Honestly, I was at a point where I felt like, you know, everything feels the same ... and if I could not challenge that, then maybe it's time for me to do something else or develop more artists, which is something I want to do. I just hope that I continue to move forward and challenge myself, and I think, now that I've become a mother, I just want my legacy to inspire people."
Also on the topic of being a parent, Bey — who turned heads in an all black, figure-grabbing Tom Ford mini-dress and matching peep-toe boots — credited giving birth with the shift, adding, "It's amazing how motherhood changes you."
She went on to discuss managing herself after severing professional ties with father Mathew Knowles in 2011 and Yoncé — the nickname she raps under on the album. "We were in the studio and Justin Timberlake started beating on buckets," she's said of the gritty new personality. "So, when you hear the beat, it's literally a bucket. It was really organic and it reminded me of being in middle school during the lunch breaks, when you just start freestyling. So we kept the buckets and we went back and forth. I was very adamant about keeping it organic, because that whole element is what is so beautiful about it. And Dream just started, 'Yoncé all on his mouth like liquor,' and I'm like, 'What does that mean?' But I love it."
After years of touting Sasha Fierce as her alter-ego, today Beyoncé has fused all the different facets of her personality into one. "I think Beyoncé is Beyoncé, Mrs. Carter is Beyoncé, Sasha Fierce is Beyoncé," the Grammy-winner continued. "And I'm finally at a place where I don't have to separate the two. It's all pieces of me, and just different elements of a personality of a woman — because we are complicated."
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(Photo: Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images)