At the beginning of Beyoncé's "XO," we hear a clip of a NASA employee reacting to footage of the Challenger space shuttle exploding in January of 1986: ""Flight controllers here looking very carefully at the situation. Obviously a major malfunction." Perhaps unsurprisingly this has now become a mini-controversy after ABC spoke to families of those who died in the accident. Says June Scobee Rodgers, the husband of commander Dick Scobee:
"We were disappointed to learn that an audio clip from the day we lost our heroic Challenger crew was used in the song 'XO.' The moment included in this song is an emotionally difficult one for the Challenger families, colleagues and friends. We have always chosen to focus not on how our loved ones were lost, but rather on how they lived and how their legacy lives on today."
In response, Beyoncé—who grew up in Houston—gave an exclusive statement to ABC explaining the significance of the audio.
"My heart goes out to the families of those lost in the Challenger disaster. The song 'XO' was recorded with the sincerest intention to help heal those who have lost loved ones and to remind us that unexpected things happen, so love and appreciate every minute that you have with those who mean the most to you. The songwriters included the audio in tribute to the unselfish work of the Challenger crew with hope that they will never be forgotten."
That should tie everything up, but if not let's end with this.
Last I checked "Houston we have a problem" is also audio from a national tragedy and yet we been using that in everything for yrs.— Dat Good Good (@Judnikki) December 30, 2013