When your older sister is Beyonce Knowles it must be hard not to live in her shadow. Beyonce is one of the world’s most successful recording acts as well as being one half of power couple Jayonce (Jay-Z and Beyonce). But Solange Knowles has risen to fame in her own independent way - she has pursued her separate path carefully and without ceremony and meticulously carved her own career.

solange knowles careerSolange's afro and bright outfits have become her signature look

As a teenager Solange sporadically recorded with her sister's group, Destiny’s Child, before bringing out her own studio album “Solo Star” when she was 16 years old. The album was moderately successful and her name began to circulate, although she couldn’t escape comparison to her superstar older sister.

At 17, Solange became pregnant with her son Julez, marrying his father and her high school sweet heart, Daniel Smith. The marriage didn’t last and by 2007 the pair had split and divorced, although they remain on good terms. In 2008 Solange released her second studio album “Sol-Angel and the Hadley St. Dreams”, which she had spent three years recording. The album was to redefine Solange’s signature sound, steering away from the pop route she had initially set out on. Influenced by Motown and elements of electronica, the album is lyrically centered on independence and it certainly marks her break from the traditional path of her sister. The album peaked at number 9 in the US Billboard chart and established Solange as more of an alternative, indie artist.

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Although physically similar Solange and Beyonce couldn’t be more different in style. While Beyonce is famed for her skimpy onstage outfits and long blonde hair, her sister has developed her own unique blend which has propelled her to fashion icon status. Solange’s mane of hair is one of her most recognisable and discussed features, while her style could be described as Nubian queen meets pop art, bright dresses and bold pieces of statement jewellery have become her trademark.

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