Beyonce 'The Formation World Tour' - New York City

Source: Larry Busacca/PW / Getty

There’s so much to love about Beyoncé. She’s breathtakingly gorgeous, immeasurably talented, sweet, mysterious, and one of the most hardworking entertainers on Earth. But Bey has another quality we love that the world doesn’t acknowledge quite as often: she’s got a little gangster in those southern bones of hers—and it’s well-documented!

Your first instinct is to credit Bey’s husband. While even Jay-Z claims she’s picked up a thing or two from his Marcy Projects upbringing (“She was a good girl, ’til she knew me”), we’d argue that, essentially, she woke up like this. Her twice-as-outspoken feisty little sister Solange recalls leaning on a teenage Bey to check “this one kid who was so obnoxious” and “out-of-control.” After writing petitions to get the kid kicked out of school (apparently, Solo was always an activist in the making), she had Bey and co. “pull up” to beat him down. Luckily, the fight never happened—Brandon got in formation as soon as he realized it was Destiny’s Child who came through to gather him.

So, you see, the public isn’t well acquainted with the tougher side of Bey, but it’s always been in there somewhere and as she grew, so did her gangster. A few years ago, 50 Cent recalled the time Bey jumped in his face to come to her husband’s defense. The Get Rich or Die Tryin’ tough guy said he couldn’t believe it. “One time [Beyoncé] jumped off of a ledge and came running over cause she thought me and Jay had issues,” he told The Breakfast Club. “And I’m like, ‘What the fuck? Did she really just jump and run up on me like that?’”

Yes, 50, she did and something tells us, she’d do it again so watch your back. Check out 22 other times Bey got gangster, in music and otherwise, below. Happy Birthday to the Queen.

22 Times Beyoncé Kept It Gangster
TIDAL X: 1015 - Arrivals
22 photos