Can We Talk About How Awesome Beyoncé’s Guitarist Is for a Second?
Of course you want to talk about the halftime show. Who doesn’t want to talk about the halftime show? Between the sexist ads and the novelty Twitter accounts about the blackout (just stop it, everyone, stop it right now), the halftime show was probably the best thing to happen all night. And of course we’ll talk about Destiny’s Child and how they should have done "Survivor" or "Say My Name" instead of the extended "Single Ladies (Put A Ring On It)" (which seeing all of them do the dance was pretty great though) and how Shaq singing along to "Halo" was pretty excellent. And if this all was Beyoncé signaling to us mere mortals that her global domination plot is beginning in earnest, then I, for one, welcome our new Beyoncé overlord.
But, for now, I’d like to talk about someone else who was on stage that night. Not Kelly Rowland. Not Michelle Williams. Let’s talk about Bibi McGill. One of the coolest things about Beyoncé’s live show won’t get nearly as much play as the impressive choreography or the light show or the ’90s-kid-Twitter-detonating reunion, and that is The Suga Mamas, Beyoncé’s all-female tour band, with whom she has been touring for years (as NPR’s Ann Powers helpfully pointed out, "not a gimmick").
An all-female backing band may be part of her image and a very deliberate decision, but in an age where women playing rock instruments is still totally novel to a lot of people because most of America and the world is in a dumb time warp about stuff like this and women who are guitarists, drummers, etc. still have to "prove" themselves more than their male counterparts, to have The Suga Mamas on the biggest and most mainstream stage, performing to millions the world over, is really goddamn impressive, even if they were supporting one of the biggest names in music and of course they’d be there.
And leading this pack is Bibi McGill, who in addition to having a pretty incredible stage presence and complementing Our Bey well, can play like nobody’s business. It’s a shame people probably missed her playing because everyone was waiting so attentively to see if Destiny’s Child would show up, because it was boss. There were pyrotechnics. There was shredding. The planets aligned and all was well.
And that’s not all Bibi McGill does. In addition to being Beyoncé’s guitarist, McGill is a yoga instructor and runs her own business. Bib Food Enterprises, LLC, is the producer of Bibi’s Kale Chips, and McGill auctioned off two of the guitars she used while touring with Bey for I Am… Sasha Fierce to fund the production of said kale chips.
Oh, and also to review, this happened: