Beyoncé Answers Critics in the Most Badass Way Possible

Slate's Culture Blog
Jan. 31 2013 4:59 PM

Beyoncé Answers Critics in Most Badass Way Possible

For the past couple of weeks, the news has been dominated by the question of whether or not Beyoncé committed the ultimate sin of lip-syncing at the Inauguration. All sides of the debate have spoken, but the singer herself has remained mum. Until now. At an ESPN press conference for her upcoming Super Bowl performance, Beyoncé did perhaps the most bad-ass thing anyone in her shoes could have done: She stepped out on stage and did take two of the national anthem, live and a cappella.

Her stripped-down performance was just as stellar as her first time around, with the added bonus of the knowing glint in her eyes as she proved once and for all that she could in fact deliver the sacred tune straight up. The Huffington Post reports that after stepping back, she asked, “Does anybody have any questions?”

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Well, yes, in fact, we do. Citing the weather, an improper soundcheck, and the historical weight of the moment, she explained that the decision was made to sing along with a pre-recorded track so as to not take away from the celebration at hand. But while Mike Doughty may win that bet, what still remains unclear is to what extent we actually heard Beyoncé’s live vocals on that wintry day. She rightly noted how common it is for singers to double up on vocals, but now we’re left to wonder how loudly the soundtrack was turned up versus her microphone (even though this really shouldn’t matter). If Beyoncé didn’t answer that question today, we’ll probably never know.

As to the Super Bowl? “I’ll absolutely be singing live," she affirms.

Aisha Harris is a Slate staff writer.

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