Beyoncé Lip-Synced the Star-Spangled Banner, Kelly Clarkson Sang Live [Details]

Rucuss staffJanuary 22, 2013

Beyoncé wowed the crowd and the millions of viewers at home with her rendition of the National Anthem at President Barack Obama’s 2013 inauguration on Monday.

Beyoncé took the stage and many assumed she belted out the Star Spangled Banner live. It was believable at the time because she pulled out her earpiece because of technical difficulties during the song. But as it turns out, that was all an act.

Beyoncé, who wore a black Emilio Pucci gown, faked it. A spokesman for the Marine Corps gave Beyoncé up.

“All music [for inaugural ceremonies] is prerecorded as a matter of course, and that’s something we’ve done for years and years,” the spokesman told The Washingtonian. “The Marine Band did perform live throughout the ceremony but we received last-minute word that Beyoncé wanted to use the recording.”

A representative of Kelly Clarkson told TMZ that she sang her song live without the help of a backing track.

The reports:

To the press seated just below the podium, in front of the “President’s Own” Marine Corps Band, it was evident that the band wasn’t actually playing during the song—even though band director Colonel Michael J. Colburn was conducting energetically and the band members mimicked blowing into their instruments. Separately, at one point during her performance, Beyoncé removed her earpiece.

A hint as to the actual origins of the version Beyoncé sang came from her own hand: On January 20, the day before the ceremony, Beyoncé posted pictures to her Instagram account that appeared to show her in a recording studio. In one, she holds a copy of the sheet music to “The Star Spangled Banner” in front of a microphone attached to a recording device, and in another she sits in front of recording equipment while members of the Marine Corps Band stand clutching sheet music behind her.

Miming along to a pre-recorded track isn’t unheard of at inaugural ceremonies. At President Obama’s 2009 inauguration, cold weather and wind meant that a live performance by cellist Yo-Yo Ma and violinist Itzhak Perlman had to be nixed in favor of a recording. But there are no previously known cases of a singer lip-syncing the national anthem during an inaugural performance.

If it makes any difference, Whitney Houston who arguably sang the best rendition of the National Anthem lip synced her version as well. If you missed Beyoncé’s performance, watch it below.


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