Aretha Franklin on Beyonce Lip-Synching Controversy: "I Thought It Was Funny"
Aretha Franklin is giving Beyonce some R-E-S-P-E-C-T for making the call to go with a pre-recorded track during her much-talked about rendition of the "Star Spangled Banner" at President Obama's inauguration on Monday, Jan. 21.
The Queen of Soul, who performed at Obama's first inauguration back in 2009, told ABC News in an interview posted Jan. 22 that she "really laughed" when she found out that the "Love on Top" singer didn't sing live.
"I thought it was funny because the weather down there was about 46 or 44 degrees and for most singers that is just not good singing weather," she said. "I thought it was really funny, but she did a beautiful job with the pre-record … next time I'll probably do the same."
Franklin, 70, added that she personally chose to sing her rendition of "My Country 'Tis of Thee" live in 2009 because she "wanted to give people the real thing and pre-recording never crossed my mind."
"I think it's optional really, it's up to the artist," the legendary singer pointed out. "In 2009, I wanted everything to be live and on the real side for the moment as it actually happened. Those were my feelings for my performance, but having come face to face with 28, 22 degrees I am not surprised she pre-recorded."
Franklin has admitted to lip-synching before herself, for a performance of the national anthem during the NBA Finals in June 2004.
On Tuesday, Jan. 22, a rep for the U.S. Marine Corp Band told several media outlets that Beyonce, 31, had chosen to lip-sync over a pre-recorded track at the last minute.
"We received last-minute word that Beyonce was going to use the pre-recorded vocal track," rep Kristen DuBois told the New York Post's Page Six. "Those were the instructions we were given. We don't know what the reason why."
Shortly afterward, however, a rep for the organization came forward to shoot down DuBois' claims, asserting that "no one in the Marine Band is in a position to assess whether it was live or pre-recorded."
And, according to Franklin, the singer's decision ultimately came down to an issue of control, not incompetence.
"She wanted her performance to be what she wanted to be and she realized it wasn't going to be the way she wanted it to be or she was going to be running a risk," she told ABC News. "That's probably why she pre-recorded exactly how she wanted it to be heard."