Beyonce tells Billboard that her latest release will simply be named (drum roll please) 4. She explains that she chose the name because her fans have been calling it "4" -- because it'll be her fourth solo album -- for want of a better name. "I had a whole other name and concept," she tells Billboard. "But I keep seeing that the fans love the name '4,' and I think it would be a really nice thing to let them name the record." Ha! So very silly.

In addition to the disc being her fourth album, the number 4 is special to Beyonce because her birthday is September 4th, her mother's birthday is January 4th, and she married JAY-Z on April 4th. Also something very important might have happened on the 4th of July. Though she didn't mention that.

As for the album's sound, Beyonce says it's inspired by everyone from EARTH, WIND & FIRE and LIONEL RICHIE to the JACKSON 5 and NEW EDITION, to ADELE, PRINCE and FLORENCE + THE MACHINE. She adds, "I also gave myself more freedom to really belt out some songs, and bring soul singing back: I used a lot of the brassiness and grittiness in my voice that people hear in my live performances, but not necessarily on my records." No release date has been announced for the disc. Lets hope we don't have to wait 4 ever. I crack me up. - DP