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Did you watch Beyoncé sing yesterday? What a knockout performance, especially when she yanked the earpiece out. Dayum! She was so polished, so flawless, so triumphant, so Bey. But maybe it was all just a little too perfect ...
My fellow Americans, I have shocking news: Several news outlets are claiming that Beyoncé lip-synced the National Anthem at the Inauguration.
I feel all my hopes and dreams for a perfect world crashing down around me. Was it all just a big LIE?!? WTF with the earpiece yank? Was that just some fakey bit of theater? Why? Why would she do this to us as a nation? WHAT DOES IT MEAN THAT BEY LIP-SYNCED?!?
Before running with this story -- and leaping off the nearest building top in a fit of disillusionment -- I checked around the Internets for confirmation. ABC News reports that the U.S. Marine Corp Band was not playing during her performance. Master Sgt. Kristin Dubois said today, "We all know the Marine Corps Band can play. We do not know why she decided to go with the pre-recorded music at the last minute." The band played live during Kelly Clarkson's performance.
More from The Stir: Beyonce's Lip-Syncing Controversy Could Ruin Her Reputation (VIDEO)
The other big piece of evidence is an Instagram photo Beyoncé posted of herself in a recording studio holding sheet music to the National Anthem. In another photo she posted, members of the Marine Corp Band stand behind her. CNN has confirmed the original report from the London Times. (Those envious Brits!) The Washingtonian would like you to know they called it first. But Beyoncé's people have not responded to news outlets about the performance.
Is it really that big a deal? Performers lip-sync "live" performances for all kinds of reasons all the time. At the last Inauguration ceremony, Yo Yo Ma and Itzhak Perlman had to fake their performances because it was just too damn cold to play for real. Reportedly Beyoncé did not have much time to rehearse because she's getting ready for the Super Bowl. Maybe Beyoncé just wanted to give us the most perfect performance she's capable of.
Still, I feel like opinions about lip-syncing are changing. A generation ago, it was just accepted. But even before Tom Hooper had the actors in Les Miserables sing live, I think we were starting to feel like the "perfect" recorded performance was missing some of the heart and soul of a real live performance. And as much as I appreciate Beyoncé's perfectionism, there's something selfless and intimate about singing live, even if that performance is less than flawless.
It's not a national tragedy if Beyoncé really did lip-sync the National Anthem. It's not even a scandal. But I still wish she'd sung it live. Now if you'll excuse me, I have to go home and crawl into bed to cry a lot.
UPDATE: A tipster tells Jezebel he has proof Beyoncé sang live.
Do you believe Beyoncé lip-synced "The Star Spangled Banner" yesterday -- and if so, does it matter?
Image via ABC News