The songwriter claims she 'meant no disrespect' after fans and musicians such as The-Dream called her out for seemingly shady tweets.
Beyoncé's highly anticipated seventh studio album, Renaissance, has finally dropped and it's been met with critical acclaim, hilarious memes and controversy! The latest involves songwriter Diane Warren and some seemingly shady tweets.
On Monday, Warren took to Twitter, writing an apparent jab at the songwriting credits on Beyoncé’s "Alien Superstar."
"How can there be 24 writers on a song?” she wrote with a rolling-eyes emoji. Warren claimed that her question wasn't meant to be shady, though she added in a since-deleted reply, "That's 23 more than on mine."
Renaissance features plenty of sampling and interpolation; "Alien Superstar" samples Foremost Poets' "Moonraker," Right Said Fred's "I'm Too Sexy," "Do It Your Way" by Mood II Swing, which itself sampled "Black Theater Speech" by Barbara Ann Teer, which also makes an appearance in the song. Thus, "Alien Superstar"s 24 credits.
Although Warren later commented that the samples in the music likely contributed to the numerous credited writers, members of Beyoncé's protective BeyHive took offense to the veteran songwriter's comments. "It's quite simple,” one person replied to Warren. "If you sample/interpolate several songs within a new recording, all of those original songwriters receive credit along with those who contributed to the new composition."
Another added, "As one of the greatest songwriters of all time, I think you know how lol." While a third commented, "This is kind of a boring narrative at this point and it's sad to see artists' attempt to devalue one another."
But it wasn't only fans taking Warren to task, musicians also stepped in to educate the songwriter on why her tweets were taken so harshly.
The-Dream, who contributed to the majority of Renaissance including "Alien Superstar," took Warren's tweets as an educational opportunity. "You mean how's does our (Black) culture have so many writers, well it started because we couldn't afford certain things starting out, so we started sampling and it became an Artform, a major part of the Black Culture (hip hop) in America," he wrote in response to her initial tweet. "Had that era not happen who knows. U good?"
He added, "Btw I know it’s not a one on one writing contest you looking for from no one over here…… you don’t want that smoke And you know I love you, but come on. Stop acting like your records haven’t been sampled."
Fans asked how Warren, who has penned hits for Cher and Celine Dion, among many others, and as The-Dream pointed out, has had her work sampled before, didn't grasp the concept of using and crediting writers for their samples. Warren responded, "Coz I don't use them."
She responded to The-Dream's comments later, writing, "I didn't mean that as an attack or as disrespect. I didn't know this, thank U for making me aware of it. No need to be mean about it."
She also sent out a tweet to the general public claiming it was a "misunderstanding."
"Ok, I meant no disrespect to @Beyonce, who I've worked with and admire. I'm sorry for the misunderstanding," she wrote.
Warren has co-written with other writers, including Mariah Carey, Steven Tyler, Lionel Richie and Gloria Estefan, among others, so she shouldn't have been too shocked at the concept of collaborative writing. The-Dream pointed that out in a follow-up tweet, telling Warren, "But don’t do that, it’s young writers, producers and artists that need to know whatever way they make it and however they contribute is worth it. We all aren’t as fortunate at first. Every idea is art. It’s more fun together,in my opinion and I could be wrong."
He continued, "It's about Art, not one artist or writer me or them. With all due respect and love for those who came before and will come after. Im truly Sorry if I disturbed the force today that's not my purpose. Peace."
Activist and writer Raquel Willis shared a similar perspective, writing, "Folks say musicians have too many writers on their songs, but samples, quotes, references, and influences are important in all aspects of art. Collaboration is a skill that many can't flex. It's a white, capitalistic, patriarchal idea that brilliance solely happens in isolation."
"We see what happens when people feel their work has been lifted without proper credit," she added. "We should be as transparent as possible about all of the forces involved in what we create and when we aren't it means maybe we aren't as skilled as we think."
Meanwhile, Beyoncé recently announced she would be making a change to her lyrics in the song "Heated" from Renaissance following backlash from the disabled community.
On Monday, a rep for the singer told ET, “The word, not used intentionally in a harmful way, will be replaced.”
Watch the video below for more on Queen Bey's seventh studio album.