Beyoncé, pop’s reigning queen of old-school glamor in an age of social media salespeople. “Countdown,” the happy, not-so-crazy, most-definitely-in-love standout from Sasha Fierce’s current album, 4. The Roots, “the greatest band in late night” (and so much more). With a lineup like that, it would be hard for Jimmy Fallon to go wrong.
And he didn’t, really — Beyoncé’s performance, which aired Friday night, was ebullient and bewitching, the Roots’ boisterous live backing and Queen B’s offhand smiles only improving a great tune. But as Consequence of Sound points out, Late Night With Jimmy Fallon weirdly tried to pass off the song as fresh when it was clearly pre-recorded. Anyone who’s been watching B’s growing womb would surmise this performance must’ve taken place around the same time as Mrs. Jay-Z’s Roots-bolstered take on “Best Thing I Never Had,” which aired on Fallon back in July. But for some reason the show makes it look as if guest Chris Martin of Coldplay, who we know was in New York City last week for Saturday Night Live, was also right there in the audience during Beyoncé’s four-month-old performance. Hmm.
One thing is clear, though: Martin wasn’t channeling his friend Beyoncé’s moves on SNL.