Beyonce's 'Stolen' New Hit Record
Last week, I raved and raved about Beyonce’s new single, "If I Were a Boy." Remember? I thought it was the best thing she’d ever done, and was amazed that she’d even found the material.
Well, guess what? The story behind "If I Were a Boy" is absolutely scandalous. It also explains my question of why this single missed the Grammy deadline of Sept. 30, since it was ready to go at least three weeks ago. The answer: it was held up by endless legal wrangling since, in the long hallowed tradition of the music business, the young woman who wrote the melody and lyrics for "If I Were a Boy" had no idea Beyonce had even recorded her song until a stranger called with the news. By then, it was too late.
BC Jean is a hot, up-and-coming, 21-year-old female singer songwriter from San Diego. Those who’ve met her says she’s smart and "gorgeous." But BC (her initials, legend has it, are for "beautiful child") got a cold dose of reality this summer when it comes to the record business. According to sources, she and her manager/mother have been strong-armed by Beyonce’s people and others who saw gold in "If I Were a Boy" and didn’t care how they got it.
You can hear BC Jean’s version of her own song, written with German pop-factory producer Toby Gad, at www.bcjean.net. It’s certainly as good as Beyonce’s if not better. It’s no wonder that this young woman is now the center of so much attention.
Altogether, I am told, BC Jean wrote and recorded about a dozen songs with Gad for an album the producer was planning to make of his own. When the deal fell apart, Gad — whose 300 plus credits are all co-written, never solo — took the songs and started marketing them to big name, established artists. Gad’s past "collaborators" include Fergie, on "Big Girls Don’t Cry."
Besides Beyonce, Gad brought at least one of the songs to Disney for "Hannah Montana" star Miley Cyrus. But Disney wanted the lyrics changed to be age-appropriate. BC Jean refused. For now, Miley and Gad have been rebuffed.
When I wrote about Beyonce’s version of "If I Were a Boy" last week, calls came pouring in from people who knew the real history of this story. BC Jean’s mother/manager, Lori Carlson, told me she couldn’t comment on the situation. But plenty of people knew the saga of Beyonce’s legendary manager/father Mathew Knowles’ aggressive pursuit of the publishing rights to the potential hit record. His goal was to get the rights to the song and to put Beyonce’s name on the writing credits.
The Carlsons, I’m told, recently came to terms with Beyonce, after enduring the kind of record biz terrors that would curl the hair of the guys from "Hit Men." Now, "If I Were a Boy" is hitting big time. Part of the deal, my sources insist, is that the two singers will duet on BC Jean’s debut album once she gets her own recording deal. Right now, managers, publishers and A&R people from all over the industry are falling over themselves trying to sign BC Jean. They should be. She seems to be the real deal, a potential artist with a big career looming in front of her. It’s a shame that this is the way she had to find out about the record business.
- Roger Friedman, Foxnewsdotcom