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Location: Great Falls, Montana, United States

I have been married for almost seven wonderful years now and have made my parents and in-laws the proud grandparents of a chow mix named Hagrid and a three year old baby girl, Miss T as her goddess mothers would have her known.

Friday, February 03, 2006

Lip Synching

Is it live if it’s a recording?
LONDON (Reuters) - After an infamous tiff between Elton John and Madonna over lip-synching, Britain's Musicians' Union has called on performers to come clean -- audiences should be told if they are miming rather than singing.
The union is urging promoters, producers and artists to back its campaign for lip-synching to be clearly labeled during TV shows, in pop arenas and on stage.
"Stand up and be honest about it. We won't knock you for using recordings," said union spokesman Keith Ames, wearied by the sight of bands with miming singers backed by guitarists going through the motions to a recorded track.
"If we are going to sell British music around the world, we cannot go out without a genuine product. You cannot sell artificiality to the Europeans and the Americans. They will see through it immediately."
The union suggested that a lip-synching logo could be flashed up on television or on posters and tickets for shows.
"This campaign is to reward performers who have the talent to perform live and give it a human edge," Ames said. "In a funny sort of way, people like the odd bum note. It gives them a sense of the moment."
He stressed that the union was in no way opposed to the use of technology, especially in smaller theatres where the producers could not afford to pay for a full orchestra.
"This is about consumers knowing what they are buying into," he said.
The issue hit the headlines when British pop veteran Elton John took a swipe at Madonna, saying she cheated her fans by miming on stage.
Collecting a song-writing award in 2004, he suddenly launched into a tirade against Madonna when he discovered she had been nominated for Best Live Act.
"Anyone who lip-synchs in public on stage when you pay 75 pounds to see them should be shot," John said. Madonna swiftly denied lip-synching and pointedly said she did not spend her time trashing other artists.
The union campaign was launched on BBC Television's "The Culture Show" with a poll showing that 71 percent of those questioned backed its stance.
The campaign has also won backing from singer Beverley Knight who told the program: "What I can't bear more than anything are those who are more than capable of delivering a show live with musicians and the whole thing and who don't."
Malcolm McClaren, former manager of the Sex Pistols, agreed, complaining "There isn't enough authenticity in the pop industry. It is karaoke culture."
But Faye Tozer, a singer with the now disbanded pop group Steps, defended lip-synching that helped them cope with a punishing schedule. "We did it to get our product out," she said.


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