The star of Beyoncé’s Netflix special and accompanying live album, Homecoming, is, of course, Beyoncé. The fifth star—after her Louboutin boots, both of her knees, and her powerful creative vision—is “Before I Let Go,” a cover of a Maze and Frankie Beverly classic that is the only thing I’ve listened to for the past week or so.
Maybe it’s the warmer weather or maybe it’s high time to be standing in a backyard in my bare feet, clutching a beverage and executing a middling two step, but whatever the reason, Beyoncé’s cover of the most upbeat song about breaking up has awakened something within: Mrs. Carter should do a covers album. It would be a lovely addition to her catalogue and would be a fun thing to throw on when you want to listen to Beyoncé but do not want to go through the emotional turmoil that Lemonade or “Me, Myself, and I” on repeat requires. This is a nice list of suggestions for an album that, if it were to come to fruition, would play well in mixed company as well as in the privacy of your own home, while unloading the dishwasher or folding laundry.
The driving principle behind these songs is, unfortunately, vibes—all these songs are songs for any sort of gathering, be it happy or sad or just regular. And while I certainly don’t think Beyoncé’s voice will convey the same pathos as Luther Vandross does when he says “pret-tay litt-le darling,” but I’m willing to let her give it the old college try. Most of these songs are classics in their own right—and some of them require the presence of Kelly Rowland and the non-white Michelle Wiliams, which feels insurmountable until you remember that she could probably pick up a phone and call them immediately with no issue. Would SWV be happy if Destiny’s Child covered “I’m So Into You”? Would I feel elation hearing Beyoncé cover “Nobody’s Supposed to Be Here,” the best song about home invasion and also love lost? There’s only one way to find out.