10 Things To Know About Beyonce’s New Single, “XO”

On Friday, Beyonce surprised the world with a brand new audio visual album simply called Beyonce. The first two singles off the record are “Drunk In Love” featuring hubby Jay Z and “XO,” a feel-good jam that’s sure to race up the charts. We have everything you need to know about the new song and video that’s to be played everywhere in the coming months.

First, some details about the song:

1. It was co-written and produced by Ryan Tedder, OneRepublic’s frontman and the same guy behind some of pop’s biggest hits, including “Bleeding Love” (Leona Lewis) and “Burn” (Ellie Goulding). Tedder also wrote “Halo,” which elements of can be heard in “XO.” Both are definitely signature pop power ballads.

2. “XO” was also co-written by Terius “The-Dream” Nash, who has also written some of Bey’s best songs, including “Single Ladies (Put A Ring On It),” “End Of Time,” and “Run The World (Girls).”

3. The song samples audio from the Challenger explosion. The intro to “XO” features the voice of Public affairs officer Steve Nesbitt as he reports, “”Flight controllers here looking very carefully at the situation. Obviously a major malfunction. We have no downlink.” (You can watch news footage (1:57).) The sample remains unexplained but it’s there.

4. The song is so new that Bey only performed it for the first time over the weekend. During a tour stop in Chicago, she debuted the song in front of thousands of fans at the United Center. “It hasn’t even been out for 24 hours,” she says during the performance. “I want to sing this to y’all because it was written for y’all.”

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