Singer MICHELLE WILLIAMS has spoken out in defense of her former DESTINY'S CHILD bandmate BEYONCE amid allegations the superstar lip-synced the U.S. National Anthem at President BARACK OBAMA's inauguration on Monday (21Jan13).
Initial reports, sparked by remarks made by members of the U.S. Marines Band who accompanied the Halo singer in Washington, D.C., suggested Beyonce had mimed words to a pre-recorded backing track, but new audio footage uncovered by the Wall Street Journal clearly features the hitmaker singing live.
Now experts have suggested Beyonce may have used the pre-recorded track to bolster her vocals during the performance.
She has yet to confirm or deny the reports, but stars like Aretha Franklin and Leann Rimes have already defended her - if the lip-syncing claims are true - and now Williams is speaking out.
Refusing to be drawn on whether or not her ex-bandmate performed The Star-Spangled Banner live, the singer tells Entertainment Tonight, "I will say this, it's not the first or the last time that someone has had to lip-sync... My greatest singer of all time, Whitney Houston, it came to light that her anthem was in fact lip-synced.
"With big crowds and echoes, you know when it's a big historical moment, you don't want any room for any mistakes, so I can understand why it was done."
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The live musical performance starring Carrie Underwood aired for three and a half hours during primetime viewing on NBC, and early ratings reports show it in the lead.