Beyon-say it ain’t so: Beyoncé’s lip-syncing shouldn’t impact public opinion

By Carolyn Freeman

The first time I heard Beyoncé had lip-synced the national anthem at the inauguration was in my Wednesday morning carpool. Bleary-eyed, I listened to the other girls declare their disappointment.

Claims that Beyoncé lip-synced the national anthem have impacted many fans' perceptions. But she shouldn't be on-fire for mouthing the words along with her pre-recording. AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster.

“I cried when I found out,” one of them dramatically proclaimed. “It was the best performance I’d ever seen and it wasn’t even real.”

Contrary to my fellow car poolers, I don’t think Beyoncé should be under fire for lip-syncing. She’s already proven herself through a multitude of awards: 16 Grammys, 12 MTV awards, a Billboard millennium award and two Golden Globe nominations for her film “Dream Girls.”

Beyoncé broke the record for most Grammys won by a female artist in a single night when she won six in 2010. A musician who has been publicly recognized as an outstanding artist shouldn’t have to prove herself again by singing live in her highest-profile performance yet.

The recorded version was still her singing, just not at that moment. Beyoncé didn’t try to shirk away from the fact she lip-synced. Jan. 20 she posted a picture on Instagram of her pre-recording “The Star Spangled Banner” with the Marine Corps Band. In response to this lip-syncing backlash, she posted a sassy picture of herself wearing a sweatshirt reading “Can I live?”

Surprisingly, feigning a live performance during inaugural ceremonies isn’t uncommon. Award-winning cellist Yo-Yo Ma and violinist Itzhak Perlman played a recording at President Obama’s 2009 inauguration due to cold weather inhibiting the performance quality of their instruments.

Beyoncé experienced the same problem, and understandably did not want to damage her vocal chords in the icy weather. Lip-syncing the national anthem doesn’t make Beyonce any less famous: she’ll continue to be a female version of a hustla.