For the past three days, Beyoncé has dominated the headlines for allegedly lip-syncing the “Star Spangled Banner” at the presidential inauguration Monday, inciting newfound pressure on her upcoming Super Bowl Halftime Show performance to appease the disenchanted.
Though many Super Bowl performers in the past have used pre-recorded tapings – Whitney Houston included – the 31-year-old superstar, who has yet to comment on the matter, could feel compelled to perform live at the event even if she had planned otherwise. It would be a way to silence those who felt deceived by this week’s scandal, but whether or not their demands are justified is debatable.
“If she’s an artist and she’s gallivanting around the stage for this short performance, dancing in four-inch heels with back-up dancers and sparkles and lights, she should lip sync,” Lauren Jones, celebrity social strategist of Jones Social PR, and former branding director for PerezHilton.com tells theGrio. “Or she should use half playback if she wants. The media, and social media particularly, make these situations unnaturally larger than life, and there could be more repercussions if she performs a certain way out of necessity.”
She adds, “The reality is, if she had messed up or does mess up, the public reaction will be even worse.”
A number of top news and televisions outlets have covered the lip-syncing story over the past week, from CNN to ABC to Comedy Central, and along with the scrutiny, the Internet peanut gallery has been ranting and raving over its subsequent disappointment. Vulture went so far as to question whether it was the singer or Lance Armstrong who had “betrayed the country more,” and Twitter fluttered with comments about Beyoncé’s inadequacy.
“People only care because Kelly Clarkson sang live,” music industry veteran and insider blogger Bob Lefsetz points out. “Beyoncé can sing. Only she didn’t want to take the risk of using someone else’s sound system, of screwing up. But if this causes everybody to sing live at these events, I’m all for it.”
Another consortium of commentators almost related to the singer’s debacle. Jon Stewart flashed to a news clip of one reporter commenting that this had “never happened before on an inauguration day” on The Daily Show Tuesday, only to follow it with his own apathetic thoughts on the matter.
“Look, maybe Beyoncé lip-synced, who gives a sh*t, she’s still a phenomenal singer,” Stewart said.
He later brought out pop star Jennifer Lopez, who addressed the controversy remarking, “You know, sometimes it happens. When you’re in certain stadiums and in certain venues, they do pre-record things because you’re going to have that terrible slapback… All performers do have to do it at some point.”
Anderson Cooper dedicated a segment on his nightly news show AC360 known as “The RidicuList” to the matter.
“I respond with a great big star-spangled, ‘So what?’” He announced Tuesday. “I’m releasing a statement right now saying, ‘I just don’t care.’ We got to look at Beyoncé’s beautiful face and hear Beyoncé’s beautiful voice singing the national anthem. There’s only one thing we should be saying today and that is thank you Beyoncé.”