Beyoncé And Jay Z At Rose Bowl Stadium
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By Steve Baltin
There is something special about stadium shows, as evidenced Aug. 3 at Rose Bowl Stadium, when by 4 p.m. thousands of fans had already settled into the parking lot to beat the traffic and be flawless with fellow Beyoncé and Jay Z fans. You could feel the anticipation and excitement before the lights went down and the dynamic couple came out together for "'03 Bonnie & Clyde," the song that inspired so much of the video footage interspersed throughout the two and a half hour concert.
A show like this is so much about the fans, especially in this era of social media where fans help tell the story in real time. Beyoncé was trending on Facebook during the show as she sang "Resentment" and looked to tear up for a moment. Fans no doubt questioned, "Is this about the recent cheating and divorce rumors?" while likely wondering, "How will they look singing 'Drunk In Love'?"
The answer is they looked great together, with Jay Z clutching his wife from behind as the duet wrapped. There was sometimes more suspense in how the two would interact than in the performance as the production is as flawless, no pun intended, as one would expect.
Whether it was Queen B leading her dancers through more upbeat numbers such as "Crazy In Love" and "Single Ladies (Put A Ring On It)," both obvious crowd favorites as expected, or Jay Z getting the crowd to scream "I got 99 problems, but the b**** ain't one" during "99 Problems," the two superstars have fully perfected their stage presences and shows.
And they played off each other well, on songs such as "Drunk …" and the closing mashup of "Young Forever" and "Halo." The couple would pass each other by onstage as they alternated not only hit after hit, but the occasional rarity.
Among those standouts in those were Jay Z's "Tom Ford" and Beyoncé's rendition of Lauryn Hill's "Ex-Factor." The crowd was in tune with the dazzling array of hits, such as Jay Z's "Hard Knock Life," "N****s In Paris" and "Izzo (H.O.V.A.)" or Beyoncé's "Run The World (Girls)" and the duet "Crazy In Love."
Following a video glimpse into their private lives, which included footage of daughter Blue Ivy, their wedding and more, the two closed out the night with "Young Forever." As the song ended Jay Z and Beyoncé stood side by side, kissed and walked off together arm in arm.
"'03 Bonnie & Clyde"
"Crazy In Love"
"Show Me What You Got"
"Diamonds From Sierra Leone" (Kanye West cover)
"I Just Wanna Love U (Give It 2 Me)"
"Run The World (Girls)"
"Jigga My N****"
"Dirt Off Your Shoulder"
"Ring The Alarm"
"On To The Next One"
"U Don't Know"
"No Church In The Wild"
"Drunk In Love"
"Public Service Announcement"
"Why Don't You Love Me"
"Beach Is Better"
"If I Were A Boy"
"Ex-Factor" (Lauryn Hill cover)
"Love On Top"
"N****s In Paris"
"Single Ladies (Put A Ring On It) "
"Hard Knock Life"
"Part II (On The Run) "
(Steve Baltin has written about music for Rolling Stone, Los Angeles Times, MOJO, Chicago Tribune, AOL, LA Weekly, Philadelphia Weekly, The Hollywood Reporter, and dozens more publications.)