The Grammy winner rang in the new year on a rocky note when she gave a shaky performance during the annual Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve With Ryan Seacrest. While she was slated to perform two of her career hits, “Emotions” and “We Belong Together,” the songstress ultimately spent her set walking around the stage out of sync, claiming she could not hear the background track. “We didn’t have a check for this song,” Carey told the packed Times Square crowd as she tried to carry on with the routine despite alleged technical difficulties. “I’m trying to be a good sport here.”
Amid rising speculation and public criticism, the reality star later took to social media to try and shake off the snafu. “S–t happens…Have a happy and healthy new year everybody!…Here’s to making more headlines in 2017,” she tweeted.
“I felt really bad for her, because it was that bad,” the event’s co-host Jenny McCarthy said of the routine on her SiriusXM radio show, The Jenny McCarthy Show. “It was a complete train wreck. And like Donnie [Wahlberg] said, being in this business, I know what it’s like to have your prompter go out. I know what it’s like to have my inner ears go out. It’s scary, and it’s like your brain malfunctions and you’re on live TV. So I was like, you know what, I have sympathy for her. My sympathy stopped, however, the moment she accused Dick Clark Productions of sabotaging her performance.”
McCarthy was referencing later developments from Carey’s camp, which claimed dcp was aware of Carey’s alleged sound problems and failed to fix them before it was time to take the stage.
“We told them [the stage managers] that the in-ears were not working 10 minutes before the performance,” Carey’s manager, Stella Bulochnikov, told Billboard. “They then changed the battery pack, and they were still not working on the frequency four minutes before the show. We let them know again, and they just kept counting her down and reassuring her that they will work as soon as they go live, which never happened—at which point she pulled them out but could not hear the music over the crowd.”
“After the show,” she continued to Billboard, “I called [Dick Clark Productions’] Mark Shimmel and I said, ‘What the f–k happened?’ He said, ‘Let me call you back,’ then called me back and confirmed the in-ears were not working and asked if I would make a joint statement. I said, ‘No way.’ I asked him to cut the West Coast feed. He said he could not do that. I asked him why would they want to run a performance with mechanical glitches unless they just want eyeballs at any expense…It’s not artist-friendly, especially when the artist cut her vacation short as a New Year’s Eve gift to them.”
“An initial investigation has indicated that dcp had no involvement in the challenges associated with Ms. Carey’s New Year’s Eve performance,” the organization added.
McCarthy and her husband did not take too kindly to Carey’s lack of a sound check, either.
“She did whatever you would call a like dance move rehearsal holding her gold microphone, and she stood off to the side of the stage while she had a stand-in do a sound check,” the co-host alleged.
“I was there for the past seven years watching band after band,” McCarthy added. “Taylor Swift rehearsing her balls off. Like I said, we rehearsed for four days, 10 hours a day. We have more sound checks, satellite checks, teleprompter checks, than any show down there. I promise you that.”