Return to Transcripts main page


Special Presentation Of Beyonce's Life Journey

Aired March 2, 2013 - 22:30   ET


ALINA CHO, CNN CORRESPONDENT: I'm Alina Cho from the CNN World headquarters in Atlanta and here are the headlines.

The cuts no one in Washington ever expected are now officially in place. President Obama signed an order required by law that put into effect $85 billion in automatic spending cuts. The president and Republicans are pointing fingers over their failure to avoid the cuts.

Rescue crews at the site of a Florida sinkhole have called off their search for a man who fell in and was buried. It happened two nights ago. The sinkhole is said to be too dangerous, too deep, and too unstable. The hole opened up and swallowed Jeff Bush who was sleeping in his bed at the time. Emergency officials say the entire house is off limits because it could collapse.

Overseas now, a well-known and long-hunted terrorist leader with links to Al Qaeda is dead. The Islamic extremist claimed among his exploits responsibility for an attack on an Algerian gas facility that killed dozens of hostages. He led a jihadist group with ties to Al Qaeda and claimed to have met Osama bin Laden. He was reportedly killed in Mali in clashes with African troops.

Venezuela's president is fighting for his life. That's according to the country's vice president. Hugo Chavez announced in 2011 that he had been diagnosed with cancer. The government has not said what kind of cancer Chavez is battling but it now says he's receiving, quote, intense treatment at a military hospital in Caracas.

And those are the headlines at this hour. I'm Alina Cho, keeping you informed, CNN, the most trusted name in news.


TURNER (voice-over): She wowed the world with an explosive performance that quieted controversy.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There's nobody else that's singing like she is. There's nobody else who's giving the energy she gives on stage.

TURNER: A path to superstardom that started with a shy little girl.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Beyonce was really a quiet kid, kind of to herself.

TURNER: Whose father launched her career.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Beyonce automatically stood out. Everybody would say that.

TURNER: R&B royalty, fashion icon and now a new role -- mother. Beyonce as you have never seen her from the people who know her best.

BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I'M Barack Hussein Obama do solemnly swear --

TURNER: Inauguration days for President Obama with Beyonce singing the national anthem.

It was a moving moment.

DARLA JOHNSON, BEYONCE'S DANCE TEACHER: Every time I look at her, you know, singing for the president and performing worldwide, and then, I think, that was my baby.

TURNER: Darla Johnson was Beyonce's childhood dance teacher.

JOHNSON: I know that she's Beyonce. I know that she's worldwide and everybody know her and everybody scream, et cetera, but even when I see her, she's still my Beyonce.

TURNER: A proud moment that didn't last long.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE REPORTER: Did Beyonce fake it at the inauguration?

MARK PRESTON, CNN POLITICAL DIRECTOR: This was a question on a lot of lips in Washington today.

A.J. HAMMER, HLN HOST, SHOWBIZ TONIGHT: Beyonce and her lip- synch stunner.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE REPORTER: Did she or didn't she?

TURNER: Did she? Didn't she? And does it even matter? This was Beyonce's response posted to Instagram. Online and on air --.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I'm saying leave Beyonce alone.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Was it live or on tape?

TURNER: She became a hot topic of conversation.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I'm not surprised that she did lip-synch.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I still don't think she did, though.

GAIL MITCHELL, WRITER, BILLBOARD MAGAZINE: I just think people think there just has to be something else behind who she is.

TURNER: Gail Mitchell writes for "Billboard" magazine. MITCHELL: That no one is really that nice, no one is really that gracious. And maybe that's why people attacked so hard with the whole inauguration lip-synching.

TURNER: It turned out that Beyonce had used a pre-recorded track.

But at a press conference ten days later --

TURNER: Beyonce silenced her critics. The punch line?

BEYONCE: Any questions?

TURNER: Not likely.

MATTHEW KNOWLES, BEYONCE'S FATHER: It's all of different country.

TURNER: Matthew Knowles is Beyonce's father and for decades managed her career.

KNOWLES: At 15, 16 years old, you don't quite yet have the maturity to quite understand or how to take criticism.

BEYONCE: I messed up.

No, that's cool.

KNOWLES: She's gotten older, now she's a grown ass woman. So she understands it.

Beyonce feels this is her time.

BEYONCE, SINGER: I feel like 30 is the ideal age because you're mature enough to know who you are and to have your boundaries and your standards and not be afraid of being too polite. But you're young enough to be a young woman. I'm very aware of who I am. And I feel great.

TURNER: For Beyonce Knowles Carter, lately it has been one hell of a run.

Back in the summer of 2011, there was a tummy rub at the video music awards. By the next January, the singer, dancer, actor, filmmaker, entrepreneur and fashion icon was also mom. And with the birth of blue ivy came a new burst of creativity.

MITCHELL: I think as a new mom, you get a renewed sense of strength of purpose and whatever. I think that's gelled with her and having blue ivy. Next thing you know its super bowl. It's just, you know, one, two, three, let's go.

TURNER: Beyonce emerged from a four-month break ready for reinvention.

JUNE AMBROSE, STYLIST: I think as an artist, you have to constantly reinvent yourself.

TURNER: June Ambrose is a stylist to husband Jay-Z and a friend of the couple.

AMBROSE: It's just part of the job and you constantly under construction, always working to be relevant, always thinking of different ways to be a comeback and not compromise who you are as a woman, as a person.

TURNER: And there could be no bigger stage for her next act, than, the halftime show at the super bowl.

AMBROSE: The crowd's reaction when she stepped out on stage during halftime was now the real show is going to start. It was like, I felt like the football team was her opening act.

TURNER: Unmatched energy and an eye-popping look.

AMBROSE: She was a superhero. It was scantily clad. It was tough, it was salacious.

NEO, POP STAR: Beyonce has evolved into this being that you just expect greatness from to the point where great isn't even good enough anymore.

TURNER: Pop star neo collaborates with Beyonce.

NEO: There's nobody else that's singing like she is. There's nobody else giving the energy that she gives on stage and much less doing it at the same time. And doing both well at the same time. There's nobody else doing it.

TURNER: For 14 minutes, singing live and backed completely by female artists, Beyonce lived out one of her dreams.

BEYONCE: I definitely feel that it is my job to empower women, and I remember having this dream that my band was all females and I told my male band at the time, I'm sorry, guys, you all are so talented, but you are not women.

TURNER: A coincidental power failure provided the perfect metaphor for the lights-out performance.

How do you think she did?

KNOWLES: How about exceptional. It's difficult because she didn't have a long time to rehearse. You've got to be on, and the world, I think 140 million people watched her.

TURNER: Does it get any better than that?

KNOWLES: I would be just as proud as if it was ten people.

TURNER: A new album, a huge world tour. Beyonce is ready for the next big thing.

NEO: 2013, what's new anymore. Got to say hats off to her as an artist, just really trying to thrive for whatever is next.

TURNER: What's next for music's hottest star? And where did it all begin?

The whole audience was rocking her name. Beyonce! Beyonce! Beyonce!

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And that was back when she was like 7, 8 years old.

TURNER: That story next.




TURNER (voice-over): Before she was the diva, before she was the queen bee, she was just Beyonce Giselle Knowles, a little girl in suburban Houston.

KNOWLES: Beyonce was a quiet kid, kind to herself.

TURNER: Hoping to get Beyonce to come out of their shell, Matthew and Tina Knowles sent their 7-year-old daughter to this dance studio.

JOHNSON: Harder, harder.

TURNER: When you first saw her and she first came in, I mean, did you even notice her?

JOHNSON: What I did notice about her is that she was very shy. You ask her what's your name. Beyonce Knowles. You could barely hear her. I said, can you say it for me again, sweetheart? Beyonce Knowles.

TURNER: But on the dance floor --

JOHNSON: Beyonce would dance so hard that she would lose her costume pieces, sometimes her hat would come off because she was fierce.

TURNER: It was here that Beyonce created her now famous alter ego. Now, that's Sasha fierce. That's who that is.

JOHNSON: When she got on stage she became a different person.

TURNER: But no one knew Beyonce had a secret.

JOHNSON: I hummed a song and she finished it. And it blew me away. And I stopped and I told her, sing it again. She wouldn't sing it again. She was very quiet, very shy. And I promised her a dollar. She sung it again and I was floored. Her parents came to pick her up and I said she can sing. She can really sing. TURNER: A multimillion dollar star was born.

JOHNSON: I remember her sitting on the floor and I would tell her, you're going to be so big. And I remember she was looking up at me and I said you watch.

TURNER: At local talent pageants, the pint-sized powerhouse quickly made a name for herself.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Before Beyonce's name was even called, the whole audience was rocking her name, sounding her name. Beyonce! Beyonce! Beyonce!

TURNER: Judy took Beyonce to many of these pageants.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She always won the competitions. We may have had 500-plus junior talents and she always stood out.

BEYONCE: Thank you.

TURNER: Adorable. Now, are these all the trophies she won from doing the talent shows and the pageants?

KNOWLES: These are from the pageants, yes.

TURNER: Yet no one imagined that at this young age Beyonce would already face the ugly side of fame.

JOHNSON: In school, you know, there was some jealousy because she was beginning to be a local star. So there was some jealousy of girls and they said some mean things to her.

TURNER: But the bullying didn't stop her. Fame came knocking at the door of her mother's salon.

KNOWLES: Some ladies came and said you know what, en vogue was hot at the time. And they said we would like to form a version of en vogue but a younger version and we would like to have Beyonce be the lead singer of the group.

TURNER: Girls time was born. Beyonce teamed up with a group of six girls, including her cousin Kelly Rowland.

JOHNSON: Beyonce was kind of the pilot of the group. If they got tired, she would encourage them. I call her the energizer bunny because Beyonce keep going and going.

TURNER: From the local spotlight to the national stage.

These girls, "girls time," ended up going to "star search," ended up competing against some 40-year-olds.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A perfect score, the challenge, girls time receives -- KNOWLES: They lose, they're crying their heart out. I go over to Ed McMahon and I said Mr. McMahon, the girls are crying, I'm a dad. What do I do? He said well, I know those who lose go back and dedicate, refocus.

TURNER: And that's what Matthew Knowles had them do. In 1995, he resigned from his corporate job at Xerox and managed the girls full time.

I couldn't look them in the eye and say, give it your all if I wasn't doing that.

TURNER: OS, that's lesson that you thought Beyonce kind of amplitude. This is how you dedicate yourself to this craft.

KNOWLES: Yes. And it was difficult.

TURNER: All they wanted was a major record deal. And that meant lots of hard work. Here's some rare footage of Beyonce working on some early recordings.

Duane Wiggins was their producer.

DUANE WIGGINS, PRODUCER: Beyonce automatically stood out. Everyone would say that because she simply was a very focused young lady.

TURNER: That focus paid off with a big record contract. Michael Maldin was an executive at Columbia records.

MICHAEL MALDIN, EXECUTIVE PRODUCER, COLUMBIA RECORDS: We could tell she had pipes and we could tell, again, they were young pipes. That's what you want to do is try to find groups that you can put in the incubator and try to develop.

TURNER: The group settled on a name, destiny's child, and the hits started coming. Like "no, no, no."

Destiny's child was on the express ride to the top. Until --

JOHNSON: What happened was the girls wanted new management so that was pretty tough for Beyonce because her father is managing.

TURNER: The two members that wanted Beyonce's father out were quickly replaced.

KNOWLES: Beyonce was the one who got the black eye for it, very, very, very unjustly.

TURNER: Beyonce became public enemy number one with fans and the press even being called a blood-sucking diva. The criticism was nothing new for the girl who was bullied at age nine for her talent. But now 10 years older, Beyonce was stronger. Her song said it. She was a survivor.

The publicity from the scandal was seemingly priceless. People couldn't get enough of Destiny's Child.

By the 2001 Grammys, destiny's child seemed unstoppable or at least that's what everyone thought.

When we come back, Beyonce goes off on her own.




UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Give it here. Big energy. Let's go. Give it here. Dance like a star.

TURNER (voice0over): Listen carefully.

JOHNSON: Harder, harder.

TURNER: Darla Johnson's girls, the ones she calls the next generation of Beyonce, are dancing to "crazy in love." "Crazy in love," I love it.

TURNER: Don't we all wish we were?

JOHNSON: Crazy in love.

TURNER: It's the first single off Beyonce's very first solo album, "dangerously in love" and it's the song that launches Beyonce as a major solo superstar and leads to the end of destiny's child.

JOHNSON: I knew that that was going to take her soaring.

TURNER: And it did.

JOHNSON: It did.

TURNER: Beyonce's part two, the solo career begins with Jay-Z. He's in her first solo hit and even her personal life. From their dating to their wedding to baby Blue, the public doesn't learn a single detail until Beyonce is ready to spill it.

KNOWLES: So let me show you this.

TURNER: An approach she learned from her father.

KNOWLES: I'm not going to talk about Beyonce the mom and --

TURNER: What about Papa G, the granddad? What do you like to do with blue?

KNOWLES: I'm not going to talk about that. You get nothing.

TURNER: I get nothing.

KNOWLES: You get nothing. This is Beyonce -- TURNER: It's a philosophy that Beyonce would go on to apply to both her professional and private lives. Nobody learns anything about B until she's ready to tell them.

Well, let's talk about "dangerously in love," the album did really well.


TURNER: That first solo album debuted at number one and went on to sell more than 11 million copies.

KNOWLES: The album did really well. And what am I thinking, tour?


TURNER: Studio, tour, more singles, now.

KNOWLES: Normally when the album does very well, you do a tour.

TURNER: There's a small tour, Beyonce's first as a solo artist, followed by three more solo albums and a total of five solo number one hits, including 2008's "single ladies." movies --

BEYONCE: Because I'm Foxy Cleopatra and I'm a whole lot of woman.

TURNER: A fashion line.

BEYONCE: My mother would make all these beautiful clothes and after so many years, my fans, they were like, OK we have to buy these clothes somewhere.

TURNER: And numerous endorsements including a new one with Pepsi that will pay Beyonce to advertise its products and fund some of her creative projects.

MITCHELL: I think it's a huge deal. I think it says a lot about her as a brand, her, about her music, and that Pepsi would do something like that for a black female music artist, that's tremendous.

TURNER: It's a deal that demonstrates she's as good a businesswoman as she is a performer.

BEYONCE: My father was such an incredible entrepreneur, and any and everything he said he would have, he worked until he had it. And he taught me there's no such thing as no.

MITCHELL: My personal opinion is she watched. She watched her dad. She watched her mom. I mean, her mom ran a hair salon. She's got this business savvy that a lot of people either -- a lot of creative types, they're one side.

TURNER: Those two sides of Beyonce are more important than ever. She's now on her own. Two years ago, she announced her father would no longer be her manager.

I wonder where can she or where does she go from here?

KNOWLES: I think that's a question you should ask Beyonce. I think she has the ability, the talent, the passion, fans that she can quite frankly go wherever she would like to go.

TURNER: Where she's going next is the documentary world. She is the director of the story of her life that airs this month on HBO.

BEYONCE: Power is not given to you. You have to take it. You're playing a part in a much bigger show. And that's what life is.

TURNER: We learned more about the personal details she usually withholds, such as the miscarriage she suffered prior to Blue Ivy. But even before the documentary aired, she was becoming a little freer with personal information, thanks to a large and active Tumblr site.

AMBROSE: So, if they're posting it, you're supposed to know it. If they're not posting it, you aren't supposed to know it.


TURNER: What the online and documentary projects have in common is that Beyonce controls the content. After the doc, there's a world tour.

Mrs. Carter? That's Beyonce confirming four years later that she's married to Jay-Z whose given name is Sean Carter. And details on the next album, writer producer Neo promises whatever music she produces in the future will push the edges creatively.

NE-YO, SINGER: She's not afraid to take a risk, not afraid to take a shot. She's not afraid to do this. If you hit, you hit. If you don't, you don't.

TURNER: But aside from admitting to some recording sessions with Beyonce, he won't say any more.

NE-YO: I'm not going to be the one to let the cat out of the bag. You all isn't going to get me in trouble, no, sir.

Nobody has the patience to wait for the greatness. Everyone wants it quick, quick, quick. If you actually take the time to wait for it, it makes it that much better when you actually get it.

TURNER: Wait for it, world. The tour is coming. Her Web site is promoting it. The rest, she will tell you when she's good and ready.