Been Caught Miming – When Musicians Fake It

Lip-syncing doesn’t just happen at the Super Bowl you know. Here’s ten of our favourite moments when musicians try and pull a fast one.

We all know how great Muse play live, so be told to mime the live show is probably the equivalent of having your mum kick you in the balls in front of all your friends. This is why they pulled the genius stunt of switching around the band members so Matt Bellamy played drums, Chris played lead guitar and keyboard and Dom played bass and sung.


Nirvana didn’t like the idea of having to mime either. Kurt dropped his voice an octave lower on the pre-recorded track, sounding like Morrissey mimicking a depressed Kermit the frog. It’s obvious the performance was over exaggerated to the point of just looking ridiculous.

Ashlee Simpson

And then there’re the musicians who can’t actually sing. Take Ashlee Simpson for example. The recorded vocals drift off within the first couple seconds, leaving her standing on stage. What comes next is this ridiculous chicken dance, possibly in the hope of distracting people, and an awkward exit.

Britney Spears

Britney’s known for many things – shaving her head, exposing her private parts etc – but perhaps most famously of all, lip syncing to her songs. Here you can see it in action, as a fan manages to make his way up to ‘womanise’ Britney, only to be greeted with screams that mysteriously don’t translate through the speakers.

C+C Music Factory

The hit song, ‘Everybody Dance Now’ may have been taken a little too literally in this performance. Dropping his mic and smoking a cigar to then walk off stage halfway through to his voice pounding through the speakers is a prime example of exactly how not to play live.

Squeeze Theese Pleeze

Falling off stage whilst performing is probably a lip syncer’s worst nightmare. It happens here, on live TV. Vocals carry on as the lead singer is huddled on the floor before jumping up and singing back into the camera. The other members had the look of ‘we know we’re over’. They were.


Another classic switch over. This time Noel and Liam switch places. Everyone’s on the inside joke, the backing band laughing as Liam’s ‘solo’ comes in. Noel even sticks his tongue out mid vocal.

John Peel

The presenter introduces the apparent marvel of John Peel playing the mandolin with this god-awful growl. In case you didn’t know, Peel doesn’t actually play the mandolin. He doesn’t seem to like it either. The guy on the recording was Ray Jackson of Lindisfarne.


So you’ve lost your voice and you have to play live on TV. Follow what Fish did and write the lyrics on cards and hold them up. The crowd loved it.

All About Eve

Another act that famously pissed TOTP’s producers off. The lights are up, the intro’s done, the camera turns to face the band and the song starts playing to All About Eve doing absolutely nothing. Awkward much? This performance actually resulted in the song’s rise in the charts.


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