Who Is Beyoncé’s “Becky With The Good Hair”? An NME Investigation

Good question, the internet. A very good question, and so many leads to follow. The question, of course, refers to a lyric in Beyoncé’s new hour-long ‘visual album’ (it’s sort of like a really long, really expensive music video) ‘Lemonade’. On the track ‘Sorry’, Bey sings: “He only want me when I’m not there / He better call Becky with the good hair.” There are rumours that ‘Lemonade’ is about Beyoncé’s husband Jay Z cheating on her. The line made Miss Marples of countless social media users, as everyone attempted to determine who this damnable Becky may be. But who are the contenders?

CRUCIAL UPDATE: Chris Martin of Coldplay fame has claimed that he is Becky with the good hair, telling The Mirror “Jay and I have been seeing each other on-off for about 24 years. We just go bowling together. But people get the wrong idea because we’re talking about walking around with big balls. I’m glad to have it off my chest.” We think he might be joking, so let’s carry on, shall we?

ALL WHITE WOMEN

Becky can be used as slang for white women, so it’s been suggested that this is what Bey was getting at. Iggy Aealia did not enjoy this idea.

@phagmob generalizing ANY race by calling them one sterotypical name for said race. i personally dont think is very cool, the end.

— IGGY AZALEA (@IGGYAZALEA) 25 April 2016

For the record, she did tweet that she wasn’t throwing ‘bey shade” and that she loves Beyoncé “and her project.” So Iggy prodded the Beyhive – the nickname for Beyoncé’s rabid fans – and then took a big step back.

RITA ORA

The London pop star signed with Jay Z’s label Roc Nation in 2008 and deeply spurious rumours of an affair have circled ever since. In 2014 she appeared gave a radio interview to Power 105.1’s Breakfast Show, was asked about the rumours and took umbrage: “”Don’t you dare disrespect Beyoncé like that ever again in your entire life… That’s just straight up disrespect. You can’t even go there, that just not a question.”

Yet she stumbled into the debate this week by posting a Snapchat or herself wearing a lemon bra and a ‘J’ necklace, as well as appearing in public wearing the same red Gucci dress that Beyoncé wore in the ‘Formation’ video. Also: she posted an Instagram of the poster for Ash Wednesday, a 1973 film that stars Elizabeth Taylor as a middle-aged woman attempting to save a failing marriage. All a coincidence?

Probably, but enraged Beyoncé fans swarmed in on her social media accounts, filling up her Instagram with emojis of lemons and bees. Ooh, that’s gotta hurt. Rita, for her part, tweeted the following:

I never usually address tabloid gossip but let me be clear, these rumours are false.

— Rita Ora (@RitaOra) 26 April 2016

She later attended the Met Ball in New York wearing a badge bearing the words “Not Becky” and posted a Snapchat selfie with Beyoncé, accompanied with the caption “Family” and a heart emoji. Look, Rita really wants you to know she’s not Becky, okay?

RACHEL ROY

Who? She’s a successful American fashion designer and there were internet rumours that the was close to Jay Z in 2013. Remember when Solange battered him in that lift in the leaked footage from the Met Ball? These same internet rumours claimed that she was angry at Jay for being so “close” to Roy. The Beyhive had already begun to put two and two together when Roy posted a snap on Instagram with the arguably ill-judged caption: “Good hair don’t care, but we will take good lighting, for selfies, or self truths, always. ‘Live in the light #nodramaqueens.’” She was then targeted by Bey fans, receiving the same treatment as Ora – namely lemon and bee emojis. She made her Instagram private, but did tweet this:

I respect love, marriages, families and strength. What shouldn’t be tolerated by anyone, no matter what, is bullying, of any kind.

— Rachel Roy (@Rachel_Roy) 24 April 2016

RACHAEL RAY

Seriously, who? A wholesome American TV chef who, as far as we know, has literally no connection to Jay Z. But due a comedy of errors, Bey fans mixed her up and unleashed her venom on poor old Rachael Ray. One Twitter user told her: “I love hot chicken fajitas but I will never make them again after what you did to the Queen.” Brutal. Also, imagine loving someone so much you forgo chicken fajitas for them. Another tweeter thankfully realised their mistake before it was too late:

I thought jay cheated with that Rachel Ray cooking hoe I was about to lose my mind

— OVerweight Only! (@madgalfifi) 24 April 2016

We have no evidence to support the notion that Rachel Ray is a ”cooking hoe”.

JAMES CORDEN

The vanilla funnyman and Late Late Show host did a ‘Lemonade’ skit where he posed a “Jimmy with the good hair” and donned a blonde wig, speaking in an actually quite impressive Texan accent. Case closed, the song’s about Corden. Somewhere, somewhere very quiet, Mat Horne silently weeps.

LITERALLY NO-ONE

No, wait a second. Back up. Hold up. Hold the phone. A question: where is the only place you can currently stream ‘Lemonade’? Tidal, that is correct. And who owns Tidal? That’s right, Bey’s alleged bad dog of a husband Jay Z. A ‘source’ has claimed that Bey and Jay wrote the album’s storyline together: “They develop these storylines to sell albums. ‘Lemonade’ is a movie crafted to drive sales. Jay and Beyoncé are entertainers at the top of their game… [Jay Z] is 100% behind this.” You mean they both benefit financially and career-wise from this kind of maximum exposure? A fair point, but the real winner here is Rachael Ray.