Beyonce surprises fans with release of album

Fri Dec 13, 2013 5:41pm EST
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NEW YORK (Reuters) - U.S. pop singer Beyonce surprised fans and critics with the release of her fifth solo studio album on Friday, which features 14 new songs and 17 videos and generated a frenzy on Twitter.

The 32-year-old Grammy-winning performer said she wanted to release the music in a new way, not as she had done in the past, in order to connect more directly with her fans.

After she announced the album, it was immediately available worldwide exclusively on iTunes, skipping the advance publicity, critics' reviews and other marketing strategies that usually precede the release of a major musical artist's new work.

"There's so much that gets between the music, the artist and the fans," Beyonce said in a statement. "I felt like I didn't want anybody to give the message when my record is coming out."

The move was designed to let fans hear the music first and form their own opinions.

The manner of the release seemed to have worked, generating plenty of reactions on Twitter.

"How is anyone not tweeting about #Beyonce right now?!!" singer Demi Lovato, a judge on "The X Factor" singing competition show, said on the microblogging site.

"Love this!! Shine on mama!!@Beyonce," singer Alicia Keys added on Twitter, while rapper Snoop Dogg tweeted, "my girl @beyonce just changed d game !!"

Fans were equally excited.   Continued...

Singer Beyonce arrives at the Metropolitan Museum of Art Costume Institute Benefit celebrating the opening of the "Schiaparelli and Prada: Impossible Conversations" exhibition in New York, May 7, 2012. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson