Inside Frankie Beverly and Beyoncé’s Long-Term Friendship
Singer and musician Frankie Beverly is one of the most iconic singers of our time. His soul and funk band Maze has a distinctive sound that has crossed generations. The Philadelphia native was introduced to Marvin Gaye in the late ’70s and from there, his popularity and music skyrocketed.
Beverly’s iconic hit “Before I Let Go” is also a staple in the Black community. He has gone on to inspire countless artists including Beyoncé. Therefore, Beverly was thrilled when the Black Is King artist remade his most beloved song.
Beyoncé remade Frankie Beverly’s hit song ‘Before I Let Go’
There were a lot of amazing things about Beyoncé’s 2018 Coachella performances and subsequent Netflix film, Homecoming. However, one of the standout moments on the Homecoming album was the “Black Parade” singer’s cover of the 1981 hit song, “Before I Let Go.”
Beverly wrote the song for his band Maze’s Live In New Orleans album and nothing has been the same since.
“It was about a relationship I was in,” said the singer-songwriter-producer told Billboard of the song “I was so into the girl, but it just wasn’t working out. I was thinking, ‘What am I gonna do?’ and that thought inspired the song. I was going to try to do all of these things before I let go. It came out of me pretty good, too. Even the music, it was all a gift from God. Today me and the girl are still close, but we don’t see each other like that. But it was a real deal love type of thing.”
At the time, the song peaked at number 13 on the R&B charts but it has weaved itself into the fabric of Black American life. Therefore, for Beyoncé to remake the song nearly 40 years later for a new generation meant everything.
Frankie Beverly adores Beyoncé’s remake of ‘Before I Let Go’
Beyoncé did not tell Beverly that she was remaking the song until just a few weeks before it was released and he was beyond thrilled. “She’s a great friend of mine but I didn’t know she was going to do this,” he told Billboard. “She kept it quiet until her people called me one day… When they played it, that’s when I heard the first draft of it and I was blown away.” The soul singer explained that he adored the way the mega-entertainer rolled out the song and album,
I’m caught off guard, but in a beautiful way… She’s such a sweet person too. Then the way she just released it, it’s off the chain. She’s done so much, this is one of the high points of my life. I feel bigger than ever! I feel like I have a huge smash out there… Other people have done my songs, but the way she did this was in a class of its own… She’s done something that has affected my life. I haven’t even spoken to a publication like [Billboard] in quite a while. So it’s changed things around for me.
Inside Frankie Beverly and Beyoncé’s long-term friendship
Beverly and Beyoncé aren’t just singers, they have a long history of friendship. The “Feel That You’re Feelin'” icon met the 37-year-old over 20 years ago.
“I think she was in her teens at the time, if that,” Beverly said.”I guess she really liked Maze and the song even then, so her mother brought her to our show at the Houston Rodeo. I met her then for the first time but didn’t know much about her.”
From there the singers would work and connect together.