[Update 5:29 p.m: The U.S. Marine Band has stated that Beyonce did indeed lip sync to a pre-recorded version of the national anthem. Read more.]
To which we ask: Are you surprised? Whitney Houston’s 1991 rendition of the anthem — widely regarded as the greatest we’ve ever heard from a pop singer — was lip synced. And at President Obama’s 2009 inauguration ceremony, frigid temperatures required
violinist cellist Yo-Yo Ma to fake his performance, too.
I heard Beyonce sing the anthem beneath the Washington Monunument on Monday afternoon, alongside thousands of folks who truly had the right to be disappointed by what they heard. The jumbotron erected just off 14th Street was on the fritz, which turned President Obama’s soaring speech into garbled gobbledygook. As for Beyonce’s anthem, it was mutilated to the point where it began to sound like wan Skrillex. (Which was both sad and amazing. There’s video below.)
Meantime, we are reaching out to Beyonce’s representatives for comment and will update this post if we hear back.
And here’s the broadcast for comparison: