Aguilera flubs national anthem at Super Bowl
February 6th, 2011
09:31 PM ET

Aguilera flubs national anthem at Super Bowl

O say, can Christina have a do-over?

Christina Aguilera helped kick off Sunday's Super Bowl with a singer's nightmare, flubbing the words of "The Star-Spangled Banner" about 40 seconds into the song as tens of millions prepared to watch the game between the Green Bay Packers and the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Standing at midfield at Texas' Cowboys Stadium, the singer-actress mixed a previously sung clause with the one she was supposed to be on.

Here's what she sang, with the error in bold:

"O say can you see, by the dawn’s early light,
What so proudly we hail’d at the twilight’s last gleaming,
Whose broad stripes and bright stars through the perilous fight
What so proudly we watched at the twilight’s last [unintelligible].”

That fourth line was supposed to be: "O'er the ramparts we watch'd were so gallantly streaming."

In a statement released by her publicist, Aguilera explained what happened:

"I got so lost in the moment of the song that I lost my place," the singer said. "I can only hope that everyone could feel my love for this country and that the true spirit of its anthem still came through."

Aguilera isn't the first person to have trouble with the song, as Time magazine's "Top 10 Worst National-Anthem Renditions" will remind us.

The list includes Michael Bolton's effort at a 2003 playoff baseball game in Boston's Fenway Park, where he had to pause midsong and check some notes before correctly getting through the same line that troubled Aguilera.

Aguilera sang the national anthem twice during last year's NBA finals. She delivered both performances without incident.

- CNN's Denise Quan contributed to this report.

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Filed under: Celebrity • Football • Pro football • Showbiz • Sports
soundoff (2,138 Responses)
  1. Sean

    They should have gotten a recent immigrant who has gone through the citizenship process...... at least they know the lyrics...

    February 7, 2011 at 9:42 am | Report abuse |
  2. Loriel

    When she started singing I ran outside because I thought a cat was in heat outside my room. Absolutely horrible and she looked like one of the witches from "Hocus Pocus." Next time, get someone who respects this country enough to sing it the right way. And cut the pity about her forgetting the words. She sings huge concerts in front of thousands of people all of the time. Next time, get a singer from the armed forces..someone who cares enough to be respectful of the song.

    February 7, 2011 at 9:42 am | Report abuse |
  3. mezzo65

    I learned the National Anthem in grade school...remember when we could still sing about our country in school? This performance showed absolutely no respect for our country or the flag for which it stands! This piece should inspire awe and thankfulness about the fact that our country had just won a desisive battle! It's not a piece that should be "stylized". If CA had not been so into herself she may have been able to remember the words. Next time I hope the promoters will select an actual SINGER, not just an entertainer! I was embarrassed to listen to the replay!

    February 7, 2011 at 9:43 am | Report abuse |
  4. Marie MD

    I like Aguilera but when you sing the National Anthem it's not about you and how you look or how dumb you can look singing it. Sign the Anthem like it should be sung and get off the field!!!
    The Ravens have one person who has been singing the Anthem for years. He does a fantastic job. If he is not available (once or twice) then the band plays it.

    February 7, 2011 at 9:43 am | Report abuse |
  5. hiltz

    Her rendition insisted upon itself. IT WAS TERRIBLE!

    February 7, 2011 at 9:43 am | Report abuse |
  6. Rediculous

    A few things...

    1. She made an honest mistake in "getting lost in the moment", no one is perfect
    2. I would like to see anyone on this comment page sing better than she does – correct words or otherwise
    3. At which point, we will put you in the spot light in front of millions and see how well you do – then we'll all sit back and watch the comment wall really go nuts.

    February 7, 2011 at 9:44 am | Report abuse |
  7. nypatriot

    She made a mistake! Why is everyone so bent out of shape. More than half of the haters who have commented would not be able to get past the first bar. Simple minded haters will bring us all down!

    February 7, 2011 at 9:44 am | Report abuse |
  8. Another Rachel

    That's Christina Aguilera ? I thought it was Cyndi Lauper!

    February 7, 2011 at 9:44 am | Report abuse |
  9. Emc2

    What an excuse. She is supposedly a professional, but she is a blonde.

    February 7, 2011 at 9:44 am | Report abuse |
  10. Loriel

    You are here commenting...aren't you? I guess you don't either.

    February 7, 2011 at 9:44 am | Report abuse |
  11. Robodnalb

    This was truly one of the most pathetic renditions of the National Anthem I have ever heard. I could not bear to listen to it all and hit the mute button. Far worse than forgetting the lyrics was the fact that the woman can't sing. Screaming is not singing. The National Anthem should be sung as it is written. It is about this country, not about the singer.

    February 7, 2011 at 9:45 am | Report abuse |
  12. Badfish

    If u are a professional entertainer and u are paid millions of dollars to do a job especially a job such our national anthem then it is completely unacceptable to flub the words of one of the most sacred songs in this countrys history...I don't want to hear how its great that she can even get up in front of millions and sing anyways...no it don't work that way...she performs infront of large crowds on a regular basis ...this is not something new...if I go to work and make a huge mistake at a huge meeting that is of huge significance then I am held accountable! In no other country would ANYBODY forgetthe words to their countrys national anthem...I think its a disgrace and a slap in the face to anybody who has been a performer and have tried to reach that level of success

    February 7, 2011 at 9:45 am | Report abuse |
  13. TDiddy

    That was THE worst entertainment of ANY superbowl!!! Slash has apparently completely sold out. The peas were awful. I just wanted it to end quickly!

    February 7, 2011 at 9:46 am | Report abuse |
  14. Derek

    She looked awful too, can you at least comb your hair before you get in front of millions of people? God, she looked like she was going to a swap meet.

    After that bomb Burlesque I think her career is about over anyway

    February 7, 2011 at 9:46 am | Report abuse |
  15. Rob M

    Wow, you people are a negative bunch. No wonder the country in the shape its in.

    February 7, 2011 at 9:46 am | Report abuse |
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