There is no doubt that Mariah Carey can sing, and as is seen by her more than 200 million records sold, the diva can lay claim to being one of the greatest entertainers of our generation. But she did drop the ball ringing, or should I say, singing in the New Year, as she failed to sing her way through the multi-octave Emotions during her performance at Time Square, before leaving the stage in frustration. Some hailed a lip sync failure while Carey “whatevs” the criticism, blaming it on technical failure. In some ironic way, the multi-Grammy Award winner’s walk-out summarised our feelings at the end of a tumultuous 2016, an artistic representation of a terrible end to a terrible year.

As we enter 2017, let’s revisit epic lip sync failures that are iconic for the wrong reasons.


Justin Bieber

In 2012, Justin Bieber took to the stage on the opening night of his Believe Tour despite feeling ill. But fans were given more than they expected when the teen idol suddenly vomited. A horrific experience for the singer, no doubt, but one that didn’t interrupt the show as the song continued, complete with his vocals. Bieber later blamed it on bad milk that upset his stomach.

Now that’s some kind of lactose intolerance. 

Ashlee Simpson

American singer-songwriter Ashlee Simpson, better known as the younger sister of Jessica Simpson, blew her shot during her performance as a musical guest on Saturday Night Live in 2004. In an attempt to cover up the embarrassing reveal, Simpson continued with a bizarre little jig before wandering off the stage.

If all else fails, dance your troubles away!

The most scandalous of them all, the R&B duo, who even received the Grammy for Best New Artist, were caught lip syncing during a live MTV performance in 1989 when the backing track for Girl You Know It’s True skipped and kept looping the line “girl you know it’s true”. 

That group’s greatest crime, however, was the fact that they didn’t even sing the tracks on their album. By November, Milli Vanilli had their Best New Artist Grammy retracted.

Britney Spears

One of the more well-known epic stage fails of all time belongs to Britney Spears. Her much anticipated comeback was disastrous from the get-go when she opened the 2007 Video Music Awards with a lacklustre performance, lip syncing to the song Gimme More

Most obviously lip synced moment of this performance was probably… well, all of it. 

written by.

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