Thursday, March 15, 2012

Lip Sync Your Way to Fame | Madonna Would be Nothing Without it

Lip Sych Madonna
One of the most famous scandals involving artists who lip sync would have to be Milli Vanilli’s big time screw up back in 1989. “Rob and Fab” were “singing” their famous hit Girl You Know It’s True, when the recording began to skip and thus loop the first four words to the chorus over and over. As it would happen, the fans didn’t really care very much. The pair tried their best to keep pretending, faking it while they most likely prayed that someone would give the sound system a kick. At some point, the two ran off stage. The entire thing was recorded live. From that moment on, the band was never the same. I suppose that they didn’t help their case when Rob proclaimed that they were the new Elvis. The group would later have their Grammy revoked when it was revealed that they were not the voices of the actual recordings that they lip synced.

Could this situation happen again twenty-plus years later? I say no. There are too many “artists” out there now who freely admit that they aren’t singing live when they hit the stage. It’s pretty much a given that a show involving dancers, multiple costume changes, and insane mobile props is also going to have prerecorded vocal tracks blasting through the venue. Too much is riding on all the dancing and stage effects (and the ability of the star to hit their marks,) to expect those same people to actually sing live. They are too busy doing the physical work of “performing” to be required to entertain the audience with a live vocal track. Can you blame the artists for that? I can’t. When millions upon millions of dollars are wrapped up in a tour, it’s almost foolish to think that an entertainer who's vocal tracks are auto tuned, and digitally massaged into shape on a recording would be able to reproduce that sound, even if they were standing still.
In fact, it might be a case that the props and dancers help to create a huge distraction to keep fans from learning that the person they are watching can't really sing at all. To step back, I'm sure that these artists did sing at one point in their careers. They worked hard, played a bunch of state fairs, went to casting calls, and performed hundreds club gigs. When they hit the big time, one can't just stand there and sing. There must be explosions, and dancers, and exploding dancers!

Madonna at the Super Bowl A Lip Sync Evening to be Sure
If you check the nearly 13 minute video of the Super Bowl halftime show, you will surely see that it would be impossible for Madonna to have sang while making the moves that she’s famous for. In fact, you can see that she missed her mark on the first line. From there, you can tell that the entire event was prerecorded. There was nobody calling for her to come clean the day after. In fact, most of the press praised her for her performance, or commented on the famous finger of M.I.A. The only one calling out Madonna was Elton John. He was spot on with his advice to the now 53 year-old native of Detroit. “Lip Sync Good” was what he told her. I guess that it was good enough advice, because nobody really cares anymore. We all know that it’s going to happen. The last band to truly play live during the Super Bowl halftime show might have been Tom Petty.

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