Will Beyonce Swim Or Synch? Super Bowl Bettors Lay Odds
The pre-Super Bowl XLVII suspense is a killer. The bookies have laid down their odds, and sports fans in every home, school, and workplace across America are placing their own bets over the hotly anticipated outcome. Will the winner be... live, or Memorex?
Grammy-winning superstar Beyonce enters the halftime show of this Sunday's game with the eyes and ears of an overly attentive nation upon her. After her initially acclaimed rendition of "The Star-Spangled Banner" at the inauguration suddenly turned into Mimegate, the heat is on. She can either deliver the fully live goods, or...she can lip-synch and still be one of the richest, prettiest, most powerful, and most beloved entertainers in America, notwithstanding the further wrath of a million bloggers. The choice is hers.
Good luck, anyway, finding anyone at this point who'll bet more than a buck on Beyonce's mic being in the off position. Whether the controversy has become overwrought or not, she's surely got too much pride in her own chops to subject herself to that kind of ridicule for the second time in a month. It's unlikely she'd deliberately muff a note to prove that she's not in automaton mode. But don't put it past her to do some panting just to let us know her licks are coming off the 50-yard-line and not a laptop.
If she does choose to either mime to or sing along with her own pre-recorded vocals, she'll be in estimable company. The trickery is sophisticated enough these days that even seasoned professionals sometimes debate how much of a performance was canned and how much for real. But the consensus is that Madonna did a lot of lip-synching at last year's Super Bowl halftime show, like most of the superstars who've preceded her in that slot. Janet Jackson's half-bared chest was pretty much the only organic thing about her performance.
It's not just a "pop" thing. Even the Who's Roger Daltrey was accused of using a pre-recording when suspicious fans replayed the tape to demonstrate that the "pray" part of the line "Get on your knees and pray" appeared on the video track before his lips ever moved. And the Who wasn't the only Cred Act to do the halftime show and be accused of nefarious doings. Bruce Springsteen sang (and crotch-dived into the camera) live, it seemed safe to say; the rest of the E Street Band, not so much so, although there seemed to be live instrumental moments amid the canned tracks.