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The Complete History of Beyonce and ‘Becky With the Good Hair,’ Explained

Explaining Beyonce and Becky History
Beyoncé. Mason Poole/Parkwood Media/Getty Images for Atlantis The Royal

The name Becky had the Beyhive buzzing when Beyoncé brought the moniker into the spotlight back in 2016.

On the Lemonade track “Sorry,” Beyoncé sang, “He only want me when I’m not there / He better call Becky with the good hair.”

After Beyoncé dropped the song, the lyric sparked speculation about the identity of Becky. The internet erupted with theories, with fans attempting to uncover who the singer could have been referring to, throwing out ideas including A-listers like Rita Ora.

Other Beyhive members, however, believed Beyoncé was nodding to husband Jay-Z’s alleged infidelity — possibly with fashion designer Rachel Roy. Two years before the song was released, Beyoncé’s sister, Solange Knowles, infamously fought with Jay-Z in an elevator after the Met Gala over his reported affair with Roy.

Jay-Z, for his part, also name-dropped Becky in 2017’s “Family Feud,”rapping, “Yeah, I’ll f–k up a good thing if you let me / Let me alone, Becky.”

Despite making headlines for potential marital woes, Beyoncé and Jay-Z have seemingly been going strong since they wed in April 2008. They share daughter Blue Ivy as well as twins Sir and Rumi, whom they welcomed in 2012 and 2017, respectively.

Scroll down for a complete history of Beyoncé and Becky:

Beyonce and Jay-Z Relationship Timeline Tiffany

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The Elevator Incident

In 2014, footage surfaced of Jay-Z fighting with Solange at the Standard Hotel in New York City while Beyoncé silently stood next to them. Days later, the trio released a statement to address the incident.

“Jay and Solange each assume their share of responsibility for what has occurred. They both acknowledge their role in this private matter that has played out in the public,” the statement read. “They both have apologized to each other and we have moved forward as a united family.”

While it was never confirmed what the elevator fight was about, many fans speculated that the incident was about Jay-Z’s alleged infidelity. Beyoncé seemingly referenced the moment in her 2014 “Flawless” remix, which only added fuel to the rumors that Jay-Z had cheated on her.

“Up in this bitch, like elevators / Of course, sometimes s–t go down / When it’s a billion dollars on an elevator,” she sang.

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Beyonce Name-Drops Becky

“He only want me when I’m not there / He better call Becky with the good hair,” Beyoncé sang in Lemonade’s “Sorry.”

Shortly after Beyoncé’s 2016 song hit the airwaves, Roy further fueled the speculation when she uploaded a picture of herself via Instagram. “Good hair don’t care, but we will take good lighting, for selfies, or self truths, always. Live in the light #nodramaqueens,” she captioned the post.

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Jay-Z Mentions Becky

On Jay-Z’s 2017 album, 4:44, he addressed Becky in the track “Family Feud.” Jay-Z hinted at infidelity in the line, “Yeah, I’ll f–k up a good thing if you let me / Let me alone, Becky.”

Who Really Is Becky?

While rumors swirled that Roy was Becky, she denied the claims. “I want to put the speculation and rumors to rest. My Instagram post was meant to be fun and lighthearted, it was misunderstood as something other than that,” she said in a statement via People in 2016. “There is no validity to the idea that the song references me personally. There is no truth to the rumors.”

After Ora took a pic of her wearing lemon-inspired lingerie and a backward lowercase “R” necklace that resembled a “J,” fans believed she was Becky. She addressed the rumors at the time, writing via X, “I never usually address tabloid gossip but let me be clear, these rumors are false. I have nothing but the [utmost] respect for Beyoncé. Let’s continue enjoying Lemonade.”

Amid the speculation, other celebs like Lori Loughlin poked fun at the idea that they were Becky. Loughlin, who famously played Becky Donaldson-Katsopolis on Full House and Fuller House, shared a pic of her on the show and wrote “Becky with the good hair” across the snap. “Wasn’t me. #beckywiththegoodhair #lemonade,” she captioned the image.

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Settling the Becky Debate

“Sorry” cowriter Diana Gordon eventually set the record straight about the identity of Becky, saying the line wasn’t in reference to one particular person.

“I laughed, like, this is so silly. Where are we living?” Gordon told Entertainment Weekly in August 2016. “I was like, ‘What day in age from that lyric do you get all of this information? Is it really telling you all that much, accusing people?’”

Gordon admitted that she doesn’t think Beyoncé “expected” the conversation surrounding her song. “The idea started in my mind but it’s not mine anymore. It was very funny and amusing to me to watch it spread over the world,” Gordon shared. “If it’s not going to be me saying it, and the one person in the world who can say it is Beyoncé, I was f–king happy. With Beyoncé, I feel like the songs we worked on were specifically for her.”

Coming Full Circle on ‘Cowboy Carter’

Beyoncé covered Dolly Parton’s “Jolene” on her album Cowboy Carter, released in March 2024. Before the song, Parton offered an iconic intro and even made a reference to Becky.

“Hey, Miss Honey B, it’s Dolly P. You know that hussy with the good hair you sang about?” Parton said in her intro. “Reminding me of someone I knew back when, except she has flaming locks of auburn hair, bless her heart. Just a hair of a different color, but it hurts just the same.”

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