January 23rd, 2013
05:21 PM ET
9 years ago

Update: Inaugural official says Beyoncé ‘did not sing live’

Washington (CNN) - An inaugural official who asked not to be identified told CNN Wednesday that pop star Beyoncé lip-synced her performance on Inauguration Day.

"She did not sing live," the official told CNN. A pre-recording of the artist's rendition of the National Anthem was played instead. What was heard by spectators and viewers was the sound of that recording, according to the official.

The official said Beyoncé made the decision herself the night before Inauguration Day.

Beyoncé arrived so late Sunday night she did not have time to rehearse with the U.S. Marine Band, which was asked to accompany the pop star's performance, according to the inauguration official.

"Because she didn't have time to rehearse with the Marine Band, she decided to use her recording with the Marine Band," the official added. "It was all Beyoncé."

The official was somewhat puzzled by Beyoncé's decision, noting when she made the pre-recording, "she was spot on."

She recorded her part separately from the band and her rendition was married with the band's music, the official said.

The taped performance should take nothing away from her skills as a live artist, the official said. "She's actually a very good live singer," the official added.

CNN has still not received comment from Beyoncé.

Filed under: Inauguration
soundoff (237 Responses)
  1. gbh

    Why in the world is anybody worrying about this? Does anybody other than CNN care in the slightest about this???

    January 23, 2013 06:45 pm at 6:45 pm |
  2. nightwolf

    She should have been real, iv heard her sing live and she is not that good there is way better singers .The only reason shes made it where she is ,is her dad ,looks and money

    January 23, 2013 06:48 pm at 6:48 pm |
  3. bobby

    fitting.... the president also moves his mouth but nothing comes out.

    January 23, 2013 06:50 pm at 6:50 pm |
  4. frontgate

    What difference does it make? It's over!

    January 23, 2013 06:50 pm at 6:50 pm |
  5. Italian Nonno

    CNN,..you guys are downright disgusting as journalists. Go out an ferret real stories, instead of trying to fabricate a controversy where there is none. You're resorting to garbage journalism, in trying to smear a very talented performer. Who cares wether she sang live or lip-sang,..maybe she had a sore throat.

    January 23, 2013 06:51 pm at 6:51 pm |
  6. Warren

    The only one that looks silly here is CNN for making a story out of nothing – get on with meaningful stories. Taped or not it was an amazing rendition and you guys should be ashamed for trying to diminish it.

    January 23, 2013 06:53 pm at 6:53 pm |
  7. Anonymous

    I am so appalled, by Beyonce's lip syncing the national anthem that I am going to make myself a cup of coffee!

    January 23, 2013 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |
  8. Jurel

    Was it real or was it Memorex?

    January 23, 2013 06:57 pm at 6:57 pm |
  9. glenndunn

    As it turns out...she's just as phony as Obama. Who would of thought?

    January 23, 2013 06:57 pm at 6:57 pm |
  10. reality

    Sing? I thought we judged pop musicians by their ability to dance!

    January 23, 2013 06:58 pm at 6:58 pm |
  11. Ed

    Agree. This Beyonce-gate and Manti Te'o "scandal" is just so lame to make "top news" anywhere. Who cares?? No one died over it. How about Bengazi, how about the debt, gun control...etc etc. Pay more attention to stuff that MATTERS people. The media needs to get their heads checked.

    January 23, 2013 06:58 pm at 6:58 pm |
  12. Julie @ Willow Bird Baking

    Yes, really, this is a total non-issue. Beyonce is a class act and she did a great job.

    January 23, 2013 07:01 pm at 7:01 pm |
  13. Puzzled in NJ

    I'm less concerned with the lip-syncing and more concerned as to why The Star Spangled Banner was the LAST item in the program? In regular events, the National Anthem is performed early, if not first. Why was it last?

    January 23, 2013 07:02 pm at 7:02 pm |
  14. Olie

    The Lady is a Fantastic woman, mother, and singer can we leave it at that and move on. I don't see where it makes any difference if she sang live or recorded. WOW, small minds get really tangeled in very small issues.

    January 23, 2013 07:02 pm at 7:02 pm |
  15. SecrtSqurl

    Seems to me the only people concerned about this is the media.

    January 23, 2013 07:04 pm at 7:04 pm |
  16. Give Her A Break

    I am not a Beyonce fan but I dare anyone who has never sang live outside to do so without fear of messing up. The elements control your voice. if you are feeling even slightly nervous, it is not advisable to ruin the nation's day by taking an artistic risk. Yo-Yo Ma played over a track on the cello during the last inauguration because wood instruments perform poorly in cold weather. The human voice is no different. I respect her decision and think it was the right thing to do. Any mistake would have detracted from the true point of the day. Everyone complaining, Shut Up.

    January 23, 2013 07:08 pm at 7:08 pm |
  17. buzz1975

    The pop diva couldn't be trusted to sing live, so she opted to lip-sinc. We got it. If everyone else could and did sing live, not sure why she copped out but she did. Tired of the excuses, but tired of hearing her name even more. Next time get someone with genuine and real talent who will do the occasion and the song justice. Time to move on....

    January 23, 2013 07:08 pm at 7:08 pm |
  18. FMH

    She sounded great! The Marine Band sounded great! To hell with everyone who even thinks this is an issue.

    January 23, 2013 07:17 pm at 7:17 pm |
  19. Diana

    Who cares! She's not the 1st singer to mime the National Anthem. It's still her voice regardless. Let's talk about the real issues not this non story.

    January 23, 2013 07:22 pm at 7:22 pm |
  20. Mike from Seattle

    I put the whole inauguration on DVR, so now nobody is live.

    January 23, 2013 07:22 pm at 7:22 pm |
  21. BHumble

    yes we do have time to entertain this because she is an A- list entertainer who feels she deserves to charge high prices for tickets to her performances. We should set our standards higher. When you pre-record something in the studio, all the filtering and enhancements can make anyone sound good. We were duped. She is a diva, a dancer, a fashionista, and a model; but she is not the great singer she was and pretends to be.

    January 23, 2013 07:25 pm at 7:25 pm |
  22. Jon

    it's important because it's not about Beyonce Knowles.
    It's about inaugurating a president.
    It doesn't really matter if she messes up, she should still sing it live BECAUSE IT'S NOT ABOUT HER.
    Besides, don't you think a presidential inauguration deserves the authenticity of the SSB being sung live?

    January 23, 2013 07:28 pm at 7:28 pm |
  23. Anonymous

    Did anyone really expect anything more than lip sevice coming from this administration.

    January 23, 2013 07:31 pm at 7:31 pm |
  24. bravinna

    Isn't that what everyone does best in D.C.?? Fake it???

    January 23, 2013 07:31 pm at 7:31 pm |
  25. Par for the Course.......

    Hallow singing for a hallow president............................

    January 23, 2013 07:32 pm at 7:32 pm |
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