Marine Corps Band Backs Off Beyonce National Anthem Lip-Synching Claims

Was she or wasn’t she?

The U.S. Marine Corps is backing off earlier statements that Beyoncé lip-synched “The Star-Spangled Banner” at Monday’s presidential inauguration.

The diva a many pop fan loves to hate found herself at the center of another controversy Tuesday, after a representative for the Marine Corps Band revealed Bey’s show-stopping performance of the U.S. National Anthem at President Barack Obama’s swearing-in ceremony as a very convincing lip-synching job.

We hear Beyonce, 31, recorded her performance in a Washington-area studio on Sunday before hitting the Capitol for the big show 24 hours later. Insiders say the singing star opted to pre-record her Anthem due to “her busy schedule,” which includes rehearsing for her hotly-awaited Halftime performance at next month’s Super Bowl.

According to initial statements from the rep, the band “received last-minute word that Beyoncé wanted to use the recording.”

“We don’t know why Beyoncé decided to use prerecorded music,” Kristin DuBois, a rep for the Marine Corps Band, told The Washingtonian early this afternoon. “All music [for inaugural ceremonies] is pre-recorded as a matter of course and that’s something we’ve done for years and years.”

Fast-forward a few hours: According to a statement issued by the Marine Corp late Tuesday, no one in the band is in a position to know whether Beyonce’s vocal performance was live or pre-recorded, leaving fans to make their own interpretation.

Oh — and in case you were wondering, a publicist for Kelly Clarkson, who sang “My Country ‘Tis of Thee” at the ceremony, insists the former American Idol “sang live.”