Mariah Carey: I Was ‘Mortified’ by New Year’s Eve Performance

Can she shake it off? Mariah Carey addressed her disastrous New Year’s Eve performance in a new interview, and admitted that she was embarrassed by her onstage snafu.

Speaking with Entertainment Weekly for a Q&A published on Tuesday, January 3, the “Shake It Off” singer opened up about her headline-making set during Saturday night’s live telecast of Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve in New York City’s Times Square.

“All I can say is Dick Clark was an incredible person and I was lucky enough to work with him when I first started in the music business,” Carey told the outlet. “I’m of the opinion that Dick Clark would not have let an artist go through that and he would have been as mortified as I was in real time.”

Mariah Carey performs at the New Year's Eve celebration in Times Square on Saturday, Dec. 31, 2016, in New York.
Mariah Carey performs at the New Year's Eve celebration in Times Square on Saturday, Dec. 31, 2016, in New York. Greg Allen/Invision/AP

Asked if the experience has left her wary of agreeing to perform on live television ever again, the Grammy winner replied, “It’s not going to stop me from doing a live event in the future. But it will make me less trusting of using anyone outside of my own team.”

As previously reported, Carey couldn’t sing during Saturday night’s set because, as she and her team claim, the pop diva’s earpiece was not working. She kicked off her performance with her own rendition of “Auld Lang Syne,” but fans quickly noticed that the audio track did not match up with what the chart-topper appeared to be singing.

She then transitioned into her hit 1991 single “Emotions,” but paused because she was apparently unable to hear the music due to her faulty earpiece. When it was time for the Mariah’s World star to belt out her 2005 smash “We Belong Together,” the original version played as she brought the microphone to her lips. “This is the album version," she admitted before leaving the stage. "It just don't get any better."

Dick Clark Productions responded to allegations that Carey felt personally sabotaged in a statement to Us on Sunday night: "As the premier producer of live television events for nearly 50 years, we pride ourselves on our reputation and long-standing relationships with artists. To suggest that DCP, as producer of music shows including the American Music Awards, Billboard Music Awards, New Year’s Rockin’ Eve and Academy of Country Music Awards, would ever intentionally compromise the success of any artist is defamatory, outrageous and frankly absurd. In very rare instances there are of course technical errors that can occur with live television, however, an initial investigation has indicated that DCP had no involvement in the challenges associated with Ms. Carey’s New Year’s Eve performance. We want to be clear that we have the utmost respect for Ms. Carey as an artist and acknowledge her tremendous accomplishments in the industry."

During her chat with EW, Carey touched on the outpouring of support she’s received from her fans — or as she affectionately calls them, her “Lambily” — following the incident.

“My true fans have been so supportive,” she said. “And I am so appreciative of them and everybody in the media that came out to support me after the fact because it really was an incredible holiday season that turned into a horrible New Year’s Eve.”

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