We Need to Stop Comparing Solange and Beyonce


Beyonce’s “Lemonade” and Solange’s “A Seat At The Table” album art side by side

When we think about the name “Knowles” when it comes to the music industry, we often think about legendary artist Beyoncé

Our minds immediately go to our favorite hits by the artist like “Single Ladies” and “Crazy in Love”, or perhaps some of her more popular albums like “Lemonade” or “B’day”. Beyoncé has made a humongous impact when it comes to the music industry and helped to open doors for female black musicians everywhere. 

However, in the haste to talk about our favorite Beyoncé hits, perhaps we’re failing to recognize another Knowles with just as much talent…and possibly more. 

Hiding in the shadows of Beyoncé’s limelight is the insanely talented artist Solange Knowles. Although Solange isn’t completely unknown to the public, she isn’t given enough credit for the amazing music she creates.

Unlike Beyoncé, Solange creates music in more of the R&B and alternative R&B genres as opposed to pop hits. She creates more of a defined style in her studio albums “A Seat At The Table”  and “When I Get Home”. Although these are the two albums people seem to recognize, Solange has created way more music than most people know about. 

Solange has released six studio albums since 2002, none of which gained as much traction or popularity as her older sister did in that same time period. 

However, when people do talk about Solange they often talk about her music in comparison to Beyoncé’s. Even though it’s an instinct to compare siblings or even similar artists to one another, Solange and Beyoncé are two artists that should not be compared to one another.

Solange and Beyoncé make two different types of music that cater to two different demographics. Beyoncé makes more pop hits and love songs that cater more towards teenage girls and Solange makes more indie r&b hits for more alternative souls.

Beyoncé’s music also has several different ranges. Whether you want a slow and sad Beyoncé song or an upbeat and hype one, you’ll be able to find a song. 

Solange however prefers to keep most of her music in the slower to the mid-tempo range and rather than her songs being happy or sad, they more make you think about the lyrics and ponder a deeper meaning. 

Similar to Solange, many of Beyoncé’s songs also require a second listen to debunk the lyrics. The main difference is that although Beyoncé’s songs often have a deeper meaning, they don’t dig into the nitty-gritty details of life as Solange does. 

Take “Cranes in the Sky” for example. In the song, Solange is singing about the trials and tribulations that young adults face in the transition into adulthood. Behind the lyrics, she’s talking about how she looks to find Sanctuary in different places and things, but many distractions (cranes in the sky) keep getting in the way of that.

Or maybe you’d rather listen to Beyoncé’s “Pray You Catch Me”. Throughout the song listeners can begin to debunk the lyrics about Beyoncé’s struggle in her relationship with Jay-Z

While both artists have songs with deeper meanings, Solange’s music has a vastly different meaning than Beyoncé’s does. 

Another huge reason Beyoncé and Solange shouldn’t be compared is because it takes away from the experience of listening to both artists. 

Because the two artists are so different, they are able to complement each other beautifully and should be appreciated for what they are independently before they are compared to each other. 

Beyoncé and  Solange didn’t compose their music together so  that  they could be compared, so why do we continue to compare them to one another? 

Overall, Beyoncé and Solange are both great artists, but it’s time we start giving credit based on the Solange and Beyoncé by themselves, not in comparison to the work of their siblings.