Grammys 2013: No Lip-Syncing Allowed

Believe it or not, lip-syncing is off-limits at the Grammy Awards.

The show, which aired last night to lower than expected ratings, prides itself on a “what you see is what you get” policy.

According to The Los Angeles Times, which spoke with Michael Abbott, the show’s audio director for the last twenty years, the policy was instated after Milli Vanilli won the best new artist award in 1990. He says:

“Since Milli Vanilli, the mandate has been made absolutely unequivocally. The Grammys only have live performances, no questions about it.”

For the Grammys, the zero tolerance policy has done little to quiet doubters. Many wonder how artists like Miguel can run around the stage and stay in perfect pitch.

Voice coach Ilana Martin, who has worked with P. Diddy and Alicia Keys, tells the publication that artists with elaborate performances will practice on trampolines to train. She says:

“If you’ve got the fire in your belly, and sing with your whole spirit, you’re going to rock the performance.”

Martin says the ideal performance would be standing in front of a microphone, like Carrie Underwood during her two song set.

There is some leeway to the Grammy’s no lip-syncing policy. The show allows artists to use voice augmentation tracks and other audio affects. Abbott maintains that the voice the audience hears is unquestionably the artists live voice though and not a pre-recorded track.

Here is a low quality video of Miguel’s Grammy performance to judge for yourself:

It sounds like the Grammy’s are stricter on the no lip-syncing policy than their dress code. Despite being in violation, Katy Perry and her dress were shown multiple times during the broadcast.

Do you believe that there is no lip-syncing at all during the Grammys?

[image via Joe Seer /]