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The Meaning Behind Beyoncé and Miley Cyrus's Gorgeous New Duet "II Most Wanted"

beyonce and miley cyrus
The Meaning Behind Beyoncé and Miley's New SongInstagram

Beyoncé just dropped Cowboy Carter and blessed us with 27 songs—including a stunning duet with Miley Cyrus called “II Most Wanted” that has already become my entire personality.

Miley showed her gratitude for Beyoncé with a tweet, writing, "I’ve loved Beyoncé since long before I had the opportunity to meet & work with her. My admiration runs so much deeper now that I’ve created along side of her." She continued, "Thank you Beyoncé. You’re everything & more. Love you. To everyone who spent time making this song so special thank you from the bottom of my heart. Sincerely, Miley."

In a press release, Beyoncé gave us a sneak peek of the magic that goes into creating her music: “My process is that I typically have to experiment. I enjoy being open to have the freedom to get all aspects of things I love out and so I worked on many songs. I recorded probably 100 songs. Once that is done, I am able to put the puzzle together and realize the consistencies and the common themes, and then create a solid body of work.”

“II Most Wanted” initially appears to be a love song about getting into a relationship when you're still young and going all in despite “jumpin' the gun.” It's unknown whether it's inspired by either Bey or Miley's own real-life romances (the former has been married to Jay-Z since 2008 and the latter has been dating Maxx Morando since 2021). But Beyoncé's Cowboy Carter press release *did* confirm that all the songs on the album are inspired by films:

“The album is an experiment indeed. Each song is its own version of a reimagined Western film. She took inspiration from films like 'Five Fingers For Marseilles,' 'Urban Cowboy,' 'The Hateful Eight,' 'Space Cowboys,' 'The Harder They Fall' and 'Killers of the Flower Moon,' often having the films playing on a screen during the recording process. Some aspects of the percussion were inspired by the 'O Brother, Where Art Thou?' soundtrack, where it was more Bluegrass.

This body of work undulates from singing cowboy and Blaxploitation to Spaghetti westerns and fantasy with Beyoncé weaving between personal experiences, honoring Black history, to exaggerated character building. The limited-edition vinyl depicts a microphone in the shape of a gun ala Thelma and Louise running from the law, but the gun is invisible, hyper exaggerated reality.”

Btw, the lyrics could also definitely be interpreted as referencing a friendship (perhaps based on Thelma & Louise?) vs. a more romantic love.

Dive into the lyrics below (via Genius) to make your own interpretations!

[Verse 1: Miley Cyrus & Beyoncé]
Know we're jumpin' the gun, but we're both still young
One day, we won't be
Didn't know what I want 'til I saw your face
Said goodbye to the old me


[Pre-Chorus: Miley Cyrus, Beyoncé, Beyoncé & Miley Cyrus]
Came out of nowhere, didn't give no warnin'
Pedal so heavy, like the two most wanted
And I don't know what you're doin' tonight
But I

[Chorus: Beyoncé & Miley Cyrus]
I'll be your shotgun rider 'til the day I die
Smoke out the window, flyin' down the 405
I'll be your backseat baby, drivin' you crazy
Anytime you like (Woah)
I'll be your shotgun rider 'til the day I
'Til the day I die

[Verse 2: Miley Cyrus & Beyoncé]
Makin' waves in the wind with my empty hand
My other hand on you
Been a while since I haven't tried to pull away
But it's time for somethin' new

[Pre-Chorus: Beyoncé & Miley Cyrus]
Came out of nowhere, didn't give no warnin'
Pedal so heavy, like the two most wanted
And I don't know what you're doin' tonight
But I

[Chorus: Beyoncé & Miley Cyrus]
I'll be your shotgun rider 'til the day I die
Smoke out the window flyin' down the 405
Yeah, I'll be your backseat baby, drivin' you crazy
Anytime you like (Woah)
I'll be your shotgun rider 'til the day I
'Til the day I die

[Post-Chorus: Beyoncé, Beyoncé & Miley Cyrus]
('Til the day I, 'til the day I)
('Til the day I die)
Yeah, 'til the day I die
('Til the day I, 'til the day I)
('Til the day I die)

[Bridge: Beyoncé, Miley Cyrus, Beyoncé & Miley Cyrus]
I know we're jumpin' the gun, and we're both still young
But one day, we won't be
I'd go wherever you take me; seems kind of crazy
Ooh, oh

[Chorus: Beyoncé & Miley Cyrus]
I'll be your shotgun rider 'til the day I die
We're gettin' high 'til we don't realize time is passin' by
Yeah, I'll be your backseat baby, I'm drivin' you crazy
Anytime you like (Oh, woah)
I'll be your shotgun rider 'til the day I
'Til the day I die

[Post-Chorus: Beyoncé, Beyoncé & Miley Cyrus]
('Til the day I, 'til the day I)
('Til the day I die)
'Til the day I die
('Til the day I, 'til the day I)
('Til the day I die)
Mm, oh

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