|Official says Beyonce mimed US anthem
American singer Beyonce did not sing the US national anthem live at the public swearing-in ceremony of US President Barack Obama for his second term, CNN quoted an inaugural official as saying yesterday.
The R&B singer has yet to comment on the furor over whether or not she lip-synced the words on Monday to The Star-Spangled Banner before an estimated crowd of one million people on the National Mall in Washington. She was also seen hastily taking off her earpiece as she sang.
“She did not sing live,’’ the unidentified inaugural official was quoted as saying.
The official also told CNN that Beyonce herself has decided on Sunday not to perform live, as she had arrived too late to have proper rehearsal time with the US Marine Band.
On Tuesday, the US Marine Corps confirmed that, instead of its band playing live to accompany Beyonce, a pre-recorded version of the anthem was used.
But it added that, as far as the Grammy-winning chart-topper's vocal performance was concerned, it was not in a position to say whether or not she sang live.
Soul legend Aretha Franklin and younger singing stars Alicia Keys, Jennifer Lopez and LeAnn Rimes sprung to Beyonce's defense, with Franklin saying it made sense to go with a backing track given the near-freezing temperatures.
“She did a beautiful job with the pre-record,’’ Franklin, 70, who sang at Obama's first inauguration four years ago, told ABC News. “Next time I'll probably do the same.’’
Beyonce herself was last seen dining out in New Orleans late Monday after attending the inauguration with her hip-hop husband Jay-Z.
Beyonce rarely uses Twitter, but her Tumblr account features many photos from Monday as well as a video captioned: “Beyonce sings the national anthem ... at the 2013 presidential inauguration ceremony.’’