who's going to The Inauguration?
Beyonce to sing ‘Star-Spangled Banner’ at inauguration
Jan 10, 2013 01:27 AM EST
The Washington Post
Wednesday, January 9, 8:27 PM
Before she sings for a TV audience
of an umpteen-kerzillion at next month’s Super Bowl halftime show,
Beyonce has booked herself a warm-up gig on the chilly steps of the U.S.
Capitol. She’ll appear at President Obama’s Jan. 21 inauguration
ceremony to perform the national anthem.
Go ahead and scan American pop music’s starry skies — you’ll
find no better choice. At Obama’s first inauguration, “Star-Spangled
Banner” duties were handled by a U.S. Navy chorus. Beyonce is a smart
pick to fill those midshipmen’s shiny shoes. With a voice that rarely
sacrifices poise for power, she can own a song while making it feel as
though it ultimately belongs to the crowd. She’s sometimes stately,
always steely — a superstar whom few truly know, but multitudes feel
deeply comfortable with. (She’s not unlike the Obamas, in that sense.)
She’s no stranger to the first couple. At 2009’s Neighborhood
Inaugural Ball, at the Washington Convention Center, the president and
first lady Michelle Obama swayed with big smiles as Beyonce sang for
their first dance, an Etta James-inspired rendition of “At Last.”
Since then, the 31-year-old has thrown her voice into the first lady’s Let’s Move! initiative
against childhood obesity. Along with her husband, rap superstar Jay-Z,
she hosted an Obama reelection campaign fundraiser in September that
reportedly raised a cool $4 million.
Beyonce won’t be the only
voice at the inauguration ceremony. On Wednesday, organizers also
announced performances by James Taylor, whose eternal calm could feel
surreal on a toxic Capitol Hill, and Kelly Clarkson — an “American Idol”
winner, a belter of triumphal pop hits and a pop star who once tweeted
her admiration for Ron Paul and was pulled into a social-media miasma
over it. Taylor is scheduled to sing “America the Beautiful,” and
Clarkson will handle “My Country, ’Tis of Thee.”
Expect prim and
proper and pompy. But there’s one reason to keep your ears pricked. When
it comes to pop singers and “The Star-Spangled Banner,” the late
Whitney Houston’s performance at the 1991 Super Bowl is widely considered the gold standard. Could Beyonce top it on Inauguration Day?
Edited by PurpleHaze - Jan 09 2013 at 7:55pm