Lipsyncing – Friend or Foe?

Lip-syncing. Friend or foe of the entertainment industry and the artist concerned? Lip-syncing is so often used these days, and people are getting far better at acting through it, that it gets hard to realise. Do you think it’s fair to watch a performance that isn’t actually sincere? Are you getting your money’s worth?

These days with the new pop divas (looking at you, Lady Gaga), as well as the golden oldies (Madonna, take a hint), there are so many avenues in which these pop singers can show their talents, without having to abuse the fact that they’re famous enough they don’t have to sing.

So when does it get to the point when it’s okay for them to lipsync?

An artist will naturally start off singing their own tunes, and making as much as they can from their musical talent. Of course, they’re not going to get the job they did without such a talent in the first place. After slogging it through their first album, a whole bunch of press releases, tour dates, and music videos, does it become okay to lip sync through a song?

Lip-syncing does in effect, take money away from people who have paid to see a decent artist showcase their talents. Lip-syncing in many books, is an abomination on those who have paid to see something they could have easily stayed home for, and listened to their cd. With so many wild performances, crazy dance routines, as well as stressful situations resulting in medical maladies, more performers are using this acting performance instead of showing off what is really theirs.

Who can forget the Ashlee Simpson debacle? During a taping of Saturday Night Live, Miss Ashlee was feeling a bit under the weather with proclaimed ‘acid reflux.’ For this reason, she chose to lipsync in order to save her voice and ultimately save herself from getting trashed by reviewers if she faulted during said performance. Unfortunately for Ashlee, the wrong track was played and she was left embarassed after obviously being caught out for lipsyncing something she should have clearly been singing au naturale.

From this moment, many artists came out claiming that they sang live and didn’t ever use the aid of a backup track. And naturally, after such a proclaimation was made, a bevy of live-recorded microphone tapes were released from several artists (look up the Enrique Iglesias one), “singing” live. More often than not, artists will try and record a better recording of them performing live during a soundtrack, and lipsync to that during the actual paid performance.

It gives the sound an air of authenticity, while technically saving the artist from doing any real work.

In this case, I find there is really only one or two reasons for lipsyncing. If you’re a performer say, Madonna or Britney Spears, then you’re going to have some pretty crazy stuff going on. You’re carrying snakes on your shoulders, or thrusting your terribly well toned groin region at the crowd, then you’re probably getting a bit too exhausted and puffed to sing well. In this case, for the sake of dance and the art of performance, it may be okay to lipsync. If the whole show is going to be like this however; i’m not going to pay my money.

The only other instance of it being okay is if you’re severly ill and you cannot say a word to save your life. If you’re desperate to play the gig, and it’s only one song – then sure. Go ahead. Just don’t make fools of us all by taking our money, and ripping us off with something we’ve paid to see.

So lipsync-ers watch out, I will notice the difference, and I won’t be happy!

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