New Beyoncé album Renaissance is a tribute to her ‘fabulous’ late gay uncle

Beyoncé on her Renaissance cover – almost nude and straddling a disco ball horse

Beyoncé’s highly anticipated new album RENAISSANCE will reportedly be dedicated to “the most fabulous gay man” she has ever known – her late uncle.

RENAISSSANCE, Beyoncé’s seventh album, is set for release on Friday (29 July).

Since Beyoncé released the album’s first single “Break My Soul” – promting the world to collectively quit their jobs – details of the project have been few and far between, with fans left to sleuth for clues.

As the day of the album release draws nearer, fans believe they’ve spotted a moving tribute from Beyoncé to her late gay ‘uncle’ in the RENAISSSANCE CD booklet.

After Beyoncé posted a sneak peak of the booklet, a fan page noted that it appears to contain a “dedication page including what looks like an unseen photo with her kids”, as well as a photo that fans believe is of her mother, Tina Knowles, with her ‘uncle’ Johnny.

Johnny was Tina’s nephew, but Beyoncé and her sister Solange referred to him as uncle.

Beyoncé has previously spoken about the close bond she shared with Johnny.

In 2019, when accepting the Vanguard Award at the 30th Annual GLAAD Media Awards wit her husband Jay-Z, in honour of their work as allies to the LGBTQ community, she called Johnny “the most fabulous gay man” she had ever met.

“I want to dedicate this award to my uncle Johnny, the most fabulous gay man I ever knew, who helped raise me and my sister,” she said in an emotional speech.

“He lived his truth. He was brave and unapologetic during a time when this country wasn’t as accepting. And witnessing his battle with HIV was one of the most painful experiences I’ve ever lived. I’m hopeful that his struggle helped to open pathways for other young people to live more freely. LGBTQIA rights are human rights.”

Following Beyoncé’s speech, her mother Tina posted a heartfelt message on Instagram about the loss of Johnny and the impact he had on their lives.

“My nephew Johnny was my best friend growing up,” she wrote. “We were inseparable, my mom always said when Johnny farts you got to be there to catch it.

‘He was the best designer and best dresser, best gossiper [and the] best cook… He was my brother he was my best friend and I love and miss him still.”

Tina gave a clue that RENAISSANCE will be dedicated to Johnny on Tuesday (27 July), when she posted a video of herself dancing with the artist Mark Bradford to “Break My Soul”.

“Mark and I bonded over our loved ones that we lost way too young,” she wrote.


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A post shared by Tina Knowles (@mstinalawson)

“So when Beyonce and I met Mark we looked at each other and both said ‘Johnny’ my very best friend and nephew who helped to raise my kids.

“He took one look at me and told his husband Alan ‘Yoli’. You see Yoli was his best friend they had a relationship very much like me and Johnny.

“On this day at Mark’s studio we danced with reckless abandon much like me and Johnny used to do and he and Yoli used to do. We channeled them that day and felt their spirits, it was a beautiful day.”