The Beyonce Effect: Artists Who’ve Dropped Surprise Albums
Bad Bunny‘s been a busy bunny.
The Puerto Rican superstar born Benito Martínez shocked fans on Nov. 27 when he released a new album, El Último Tour del Mundo, entirely out of the blue. Written and recorded during the COVID-19 quarantine, the 16-track LP marked Bad Bunny’s third collection of new tunes to drop in the same calendar year. And all of them arrived with an element of surprise.
While releasing three albums in one year is a feat of superhuman artistic strength, the practice of dropping them with zero promotion is nothing new. The strategy was made popular by Beyoncé when she released her self-titled fifth studio album in December 2013 out of thin air, shocking fans and industry insiders alike. It was a move that’s inspired many imitators—each to their own varying degree of success—upending traditional promotional processes for good.
However, though Queen Bey made the surprise drop a thing, you might be surprised to know that she wasn’t the first one to do it.
Check out the history of the surprise album below, from its rock roots to its rap and pop present.
Getty Images; Beyonce.com/E! Illustration
El Último Tour del Mundo is available now.
Watch Daily Pop weekdays at 11 a.m., only on E!