A Guide to All the Samples on Beyoncé’s ‘Renaissance’

Beyoncé is no stranger to sampling and interpolating other artists’ work in her own music, and her Renaissance album is no different. The album is a love letter to Black queer and trans people and contains production and writing credits from many members of the community.

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Beyoncé in 2019 | Robyn Beck/AFP via Getty Images

‘I’m That Girl’

The album’s opening track, “I’m That Girl,” contains parts of Tommy Wright III and Princess Loko’s 1994 track “Still Pimpin.”

‘Cozy’

“Cozy” follows “I’m That Girl” on the tracklist. The song most prominently features the voice of actor and entertainer Ts Madison from her YouTube video “B**** I’m Black,” which she shared in the wake of George Floyd’s murder in 2020 as she speaks about the Black experience in the US.

“Cozy” also contains a sample of Lidell Townsell and M.T.F.’s 1992 song “Get With U.”

‘Alien Superstar’

The chorus of “Alien Superstar” interpolates Right Said Fred’s hit song “I’m Too Sexy,” which was also sampled in Drake and Future’s 2021 single “Way 2 Sexy.”

The track, produced by Honey Dijon, also samples Foremost Poets’ “Moonraker” and Danube Dance’s “Unique,” as well as an excerpt from Barbara Ann Teer’s “Black Theatre” speech.

‘Cuff It’

“Cuff It” interpolates Teena Marie’s 1988 song “Ooh La La La.”

‘Energy’

“Energy” came under fire after Renaissance‘s release after singer Kelis spoke out against Beyoncé and her team for not notifying her that her song “Milkshake” would be used on her album. Because the song was written by The Neptunes (a.k.a. Pharrell Williams and Chad Hugo), Kelis wasn’t notified nor received any compensation.

It eventually led to the track being altered on streaming services and the elements of “Milkshake” removed.

‘Break My Soul’

“Break My Soul” famously reworks parts of Robin S.’s hit song “Show Me Love” in its production, while vocals from frequent collaborator Big Freedia’s song “Explode” are incorporated into the track.

‘Church Girl’

A song titled “Church Girl” wouldn’t be complete without a sample from The Clark Sisters — specifically, their 1981 song “Center of Thy Will.”

The song also contains bits and pieces from DJ Jimi’s “Where They At,” Lyn Collins’ “Think (About It),” and The Showboys’ ‘Drag Rap (Triggerman).”

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‘America Has a Problem’

“America Has a Problem” contains a sample of Kilo Ali’s 1990 song “Cocaine.”

‘Pure/Honey’

“Pure/Honey” is an outward tribute to the world of ballroom and the underground queer scene of the 1980s. The song famously features Moi Renee’s beloved track “Miss Honey.” In addition, the track also samples Kevin Aviance’s club track “C***y” as well as “Feels Like” from ballroom icons MikeQ and Kevin Jz Prodigy.

‘Summer Renaissance’

Perhaps the most instantly-recognizable sample on the album, “Summer Renaissance” interpolates Donna Summer’s classic disco hit “I Feel Love.” In 2019, Grammy-winning singer Sam Smith covered the Donna Summer classic.

RELATED: Beyoncé Sampled Kelis’ ‘Milkshake’ Without Her Knowing, and Kelis Wasn’t Happy