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Gardiner Brothers/TikTok (with permission)

The Gardiner Brothers stepping in time to Beyoncé's "Texas Hold 'Em."

In early February 2024, Beyoncé rocked the music world by releasing a surprise new album of country tunes. The album, Renaissance: Act II, includes a song called "Texas Hold 'Em," which shot up the country charts—with a few bumps along the way—and landed Queen Bey at the No.1 spot.

As the first Black female artist to have a song hit No. 1 on Billboard's country music charts, Beyoncé once again proved her popularity, versatility and ability to break barriers without missing a beat. In one fell swoop, she got people who had zero interest in country music to give it a second look, forced country music fans to broaden their own ideas about what country music looks like and prompted conversations about bending and blending musical genres and styles.

And she inspired the Gardiner Brothers to add yet another element to the mix—Irish stepdance.

In a TikTok that's been viewed over 17 million times, the Gardiner Brothers don cowboy hats while they step in time to "Texas Hold 'Em," much to the delight of viewers everywhere.



Beyoncé 🤝 Irish dancing #beyonce #countrymusic

Michael and Matthew Gardiner are professional Irish-American stepdancers and choreographers who have gained international fame with their award-winning performances. They've also built a following of millions on social media with videos like this one, where they dance to popular songs, usually in an outdoor environment.

The melding of Irish dance with country music sung by a Black American female artist may seem unlikely, but it could be viewed merely as country music coming back to its roots. After all, country music has its roots in the ballad tradition of the Irish, English and Scottish settlers in the Appalachian region of the U.S. And despite modern country music's struggle to break free from "music for white people" stereotypes, it has roots in African-American traditions as well. For instance, the banjo, which has long been used in bluegrass and country music, was created by enslaved Africans and their descendents during the colonial era, according to The Smithsonian.

People are loving the blending of genres and culture that the TikTok exemplifies.

"Never thought I’d see Irish step dancing while Beyoncé sings country," wrote on commenter. "My life is complete. ♥️"

"So happy Beyoncé dropped this song and exposed my timeline to diversified talent 👏🏽👏🏽," wrote another.

"Beyoncé brought the world together with this song 😭," offered another person.

"Ayeeee Irish Dancing has entered the BeyHive chatroom… WELCOME!! 🔥🔥🔥" exclaimed another.

"I don’t think I can explain how many of my interests are intersecting here," wrote one commenter, reflecting what several others shared as well.

The Beyoncé/Gardiner Brothers combo and the reactions to it are a good reminder that none of us fit into one box of interest or identity. We're all an eclectic mix of tastes and styles, so we can almost always find a way to connect with others over something we enjoy. What better way to be reminded of that fact than through an unexpected mashup that blends the magic of music with the delight of dance? Truly, the arts are a powerful uniting force we should utilize more often.

And for an extra bit of fun, the Gardiner Brothers also shared their bloopers from filming the video. Turns out stepping in the rain isn't as easy as they make it look.

Beyoncé Bloopers #texasholdem #gardinerbrothers


Beyoncé Bloopers #texasholdem #gardinerbrothers

This article originally appeared on 2.26.24

@yourfavemusicteacher/TikTok, @aminahtiyee/TikTok, @braids_grades_repeat/Instagram, @jackeeharry/X

Beyonce can trend anywhere

Gone are the days of shrill whistles and obnoxious bullhorns to demand a classroom’s attention. Instead, teachers are opting for more creative calls-to-action, usually involving some kind of musicality. Clapping rhythms, singsongy phrases, even throwback song lyrics are fun ways to get distracted, rambunctious kids to quiet down and focus. No matter which delivery style a teacher uses, it has to appeal to their young audience.

So of course, a call-to-action inspired by Beyoncé is the perfect choice.

If you haven’t heard of the “mute challenge” taking over social media, it stems from a viral moment that happened during Beyoncé’s recent Renaissance tour.

After Beyoncé would sing the lyrics, “Look around, everybody on mute,” for her song “Energy,” her backup performers and everyone in the crowd would freeze.
@super_negra Atlanta Night 1 are still the “On Mute Challenge” champions. (8-11-23) ✨ #Atlanta #OnMute #Beyonce #Music #RWT ♬ original sound - Super_Negra

A few seconds of silence would go by, and then the song would resume.

You can probably see why this trend would work really well with some rowdy students. Former teacher, now actress Jackée Harry certainly did as she posted “I hope teachers start using “look around everybody on mute” to quiet their classrooms” to X (formerly Twitter).

Let’s just say—teachers were more than willing to complete their assignment. And their classes aced it with flying colors.

Check out how well they did below. Watching the look of sheer delight on each teacher’s face during the sweet silence is truly priceless.

Part of the call-to-action’s success is that young students are equally invested in Beyoncé as the teachers are, so it’s a fun bonding moment. In a way it’s bringing the popular concert to the classroom. And it makes the kids super passionate.

Aminah Muhammad, a first grade teacher in Lawrenceville, Georgia, told Today that her kids even give a “big gasp” before they do it.

But even the super young kiddos who weren’t part of the Beyhive, and had no idea who Beyoncé was (can you believe it?) responded well to the challenge, and only needed a quick explainer of how to do it.

All in all, what’s great about this is that teachers are getting to infuse a bit of their own unique personalities into their job, and that it’s getting a great response from their students. Structure is important, but that doesn’t mean rigid formality is required.

Now—will these teachers be able to get their students to wear all silver outfits, just like Queen Bey did for her tour? Stay tuned.


He slayed.

Since May 10, 2023, Beyoncé’s "Renaissance" tour has been in full swing. And with a performer known for her show-stopping dance routines, you can bet that many loyal fans have picked up a move or two and plan to bust them out during a concert.

But one fan with some seriously next-level dance skills seems to be on par with Queen Bey herself. People are so enamored with his choreography that they are calling for him to become an actual tour performer.

A viral video shows the mysterious dancer unofficially warming up the crowd at Murrayfield Stadium in Edinburgh, Scotland, before Beyoncé was set to arrive, bringing audiences to life with his enthusiastic strutting, spinning and sashaying across the stage.

After receiving thousands of views, the video eventually made its way to Frankie Duncan, our previously unnamed dancer. Duncan immediately reposted the video to his account, writing in the caption: "The fact that I have become Beyoncé's unofficial warm up at her concert has me GAGGED!"

@frankieduncan76 The fact that I have become Beyoncé's unofficial warm up at her concert has me GAGGED! #beyonce #dancer #fyp#foryoupage ♬ original sound - Frankie Duncan

Other videos capturing the dance from different angles began pouring in from other concertgoers, who unanimously hailed Duncan’s impromptu number as “phenomenal” and declared his talents should be in the actual show.

“SERVED. ATE & LEFT NO CRUMBS,” one person commented.

“*starts a petition for Beyoncé to hire him*” wrote another.

Duncan’s viral dance moves eventually scored him an interview with Edinburgh News, where he shared that dancing to pop music was a passion ignited by his sister Trisha when they were both just kids and learning “Britney moves” together.

After Trisha passed away in 2019, Duncan fell “out of touch” with dancing—a relatable scenario for many, to be sure. But he had recently been getting back into the hobby as a form of “therapy.”

While “buzzing” in anticipation for Beyoncé, Duncan had a “spur of the moment” idea to bust a move. What began as a “wee boogie” quickly escalated into something much bigger after the crowd started cheering. After that, Duncan just “went for it.”

“I had an instant rush of adrenaline and it was like a fire in my feet that went from the souls of my feet all the way, and I just went into ‘Frankie entertainer mode’” he recalled.

And now, after having danced his heart out to an artist Trisha was a “huge fan” of and becoming widely recognized for it, Duncan describes the surreal moment as something out of a “fairytale.”

“I know that if [Trisha] was here right now then she would be so proud, so the last few days have made me emotional that my name is just alongside Beyoncé!” he said. We are also very proud of you, Frankie. Keep spreading joy!

Kevin Bacon sang a Beyoncé song surrounded by goats because why not?

We are thrilled to announce that a new mathematical formula has been discovered that blows the lid off of everything we think we know and contains the potential to revolutionize life on planet Earth forever:

Kevin Bacon + guitar + Beyoncé + 3(goats) = untold joy(∞)

Who knew that Kevin Bacon playing guitar and singing a Beyoncé song surrounded by goats on a farm was key to unlocking the mysteries of the universe? Nobody, that's who.

And yet, here we are on this day in the year of our Lord 2022, witnessing the consummation of viral musical achievement over millennia in one minute and 16 seconds of pure Kevin Bey-conny delight.

Seriously, what did we do to deserve this gift?

Bacon shared the video, in which he casually strums his guitar and sings Beyoncé's "Heated" while being surrounded by goats on his farm, on Twitter. "Hot day, hot song. The goats and I are feeling Heated @Beyonce," he wrote. "Loving this track."

You just have to see it:

It's the delightfully unexpected acoustic cover none of us asked for but all of us needed.

Kevin Bacon and Beyoncé fans alike responded with joy over the video, with several people welcoming him to Beyoncé's collective fan base known as the Beyhive.

For those who haven't heard the original, here's the official lyric video of "Heated" from Beyoncé's newest album, "Renaissance," so you can see the inspiration for Bacon's cover.

Beyoncé - HEATED (Official Lyric Video)

And if less than a minute and a half of Kevin Bacon singing with farm animals wasn't enough for you, never fear. Here he is with his ukulele singing the Beatles' "When I'm 64" on his 64th birthday last month, with what appears to be a llama or alpaca in the background. Because, of course. What else would you do on your 64th birthday if you were Kevin Bacon?

(Side note: Please tell me I'm not the only Gen Xer having a hard time wrapping my mind around the fact that Kevin Bacon is 64. That seems impossible.)

Thanks to Kevin Bacon and Beyoncé and the goats for bringing us all together today for a desperately needed respite from the heaviness of the world. What a great way to start the week.