Poor Beyoncé is being slammed with scandalous allegations that she lip-synced the National Anthem during the presidential inauguration ceremony in Washington, D.C. on Monday. While a small amount of disappointment is reasonable … it is a bit sneaky to pretend you’re singing when you’re not … the current level of outrage is somewhat ludicrous.
Really … who gives a shit? She sounded good (sorry, her recorded voice sounded good) and she looked pretty and that’s why she was there. On the flip side … yes, it was chilly, but everyone else managed to perform. And, yes, the Star-Spangled Banner is a hard song to sing, but that’s her fucking job, right?
At this point, the lip-syncing has been more or less confirmed by everyone but Beyoncé herself. While the spokeswoman and the director of the Marine Corps Band have each stated publicly that a pre-recorded version of the National Anthem was used, they are also falling all over themselves to both qualify and justify it. It was cold, it was a high profile event, it’s “standard operating procedure,” blah blah blah.
“Each piece of music scheduled for performance in the Inauguration is pre-recorded for use in case of freezing temperatures, equipment failure, or extenuating circumstances.”
To my mind, the most disappointing excuse being offered for Beyoncé not singing live is that she didn’t have enough time to rehearse with the band because she’s too busy preparing for her Superbowl performance. Undoubtedly, Beyoncé must have a busy schedule, but one might argue that the presidential inauguration is somewhat more important than the fucking Superbowl.
Evidently, the Marine Corps Band performed live for the entire ceremony, except for Beyoncé’s part. According to the band’s spokeswoman, they were told to stand and pretend to play the National Anthem … which must have been a bit humiliating for professional musicians.
Perhaps little Kelly Clarkson is built of hardier stuff than Beyoncé, because she didn’t seem to have any trouble. And James Taylor, who to my mind was the stand-out performer, managed to both sing and play his guitar live. And he’s about a hundred years old.
In Beyoncé’s defence, it has been pointed out that Yo-Yo Ma faked it at the last inauguration, because his instrument, the cello, is too delicate to withstand D.C.’s weather conditions. To me, that merely brings up the question of why the organizers would schedule a cellist to play at an outdoor event in January. It just seems like poor planning, does it not?
At any rate, it’s a shame that Beyoncé should be distracted by this nasty business. The Superbowl … featuring her hotly anticipated half-time show … is less than two weeks away, she needs every ounce of her concentration to pre-record and prepare her lip-sync for that performance.