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. j0eschm0e

    Im glad I missed it. Shes paying for her mistake with her embarressment LOL memorize the lines or get a teleprompter. and to all those who say oh its good enough.... no it wasnt.... and also she isnt worth the cheap beer

    February 7, 2011 at 2:29 am | Report abuse |
  2. john

    So what she screwed the national anthem, big deal.... She is hot and that is all I care about. We should be more ashamed of Sarah Palin making Americans look like idiots every time she opens her mouth.

    "Suck it long, and suck it hard, Trebek" HA HA Epic.

    February 7, 2011 at 2:30 am | Report abuse |
  3. ed

    I hope you can give a better performance than her...

    February 7, 2011 at 2:30 am | Report abuse |
  4. Floria sigmundi

    Well she should be in this it's scary!

    February 7, 2011 at 2:36 am | Report abuse |
  5. Short Sale Realtor

    Everybody flubs sometimes...Christina perfectly sang it before today

    February 7, 2011 at 2:41 am | Report abuse |
    • ed


      February 7, 2011 at 3:00 am | Report abuse |
    • Randy

      Yeah, but today is the one that counted.

      February 7, 2011 at 4:55 am | Report abuse |
  6. gimli420

    This was inexcusably bad...what, they couldn't get Roseanne Barr? At least she got the words right.

    February 7, 2011 at 2:43 am | Report abuse |
  7. JustSaying

    It's too bad she didn't sing the right verses,but I'm sure all you idiots making "light" of our National Anthem, don't know the words either. Yes, the song refers to a piece of cloth, until you have fought, defended or contributed to what that piece of "Cloth" represents in times of peace or war, then you need to choose your words wisely. But I forgot, that is the reason you folks have a right to "Freedom of Speech".....

    February 7, 2011 at 2:50 am | Report abuse |
  8. MatchCard

    I don't like the Anthem anyways and wasn't it written by a Frenchman? Lol...

    February 7, 2011 at 2:51 am | Report abuse |
  9. j0eschm0e

    her singing is about as good as that die job hair-do that seriously needs some conditioner

    February 7, 2011 at 2:53 am | Report abuse |
  10. krozar

    Imagine if they had to sing the entire Star Spangled Banner. We just cut it off at "and home of the brave." Not a lot of words when you only single 1/3rd the song.

    February 7, 2011 at 2:56 am | Report abuse |
  11. j0eschm0e

    To all those who sing the national anthem from now on.... Sing it straight, or dont sing it at all..... she made it all about her.

    February 7, 2011 at 2:59 am | Report abuse |
  12. carl

    wow .
    not being from the United States myself ..
    I find it quite amazing that someone did not know if staten island was part of the U.S ...
    also that Americans speak American ??? ummm no English !
    the whole world watches the superbowl ..umm no again ... really no one outside of continental north america
    it is one of the most watched sporting events in the world , but only in mass from America.
    whole of europe , england , australia , russia , china , new zealand , asia , india ..on and on dont give a damn !
    The education levels in North America seem very low some of the comments here
    I think some of these people couldnt identify and place 5 other countries on the globe
    ahh but Im sure these people are the exceptions .... cough ... cough

    February 7, 2011 at 2:59 am | Report abuse |
  13. Carl

    I think I'll post for the very first time on CNN to happily remind you all that you're arguing on the internet with strangers and therefore pretty much equally stupid.

    February 7, 2011 at 3:05 am | Report abuse |
  14. Snookums


    February 7, 2011 at 3:44 am | Report abuse |
  15. Nuswatchr

    Yes unfortunately it is so rampant among younger generation of Americans. They don't know the words to the national anthem because they don't care to know the meaning of the song anymore. It's even more evident during Olympics. You see athletes from all over the world proudly singing their national anthem and while American athletes often struggling to mouth the lyrics and then catch up on the last line. Sad and Pathetic really. Easiest way I remember lyrics is by understanding the meaning of's essentially a story put into a song of a ferocious battle for freedom that was waged and ended with our flag still flying high, freedom prevailing and a country born; essentially the birth of America. Why gradeschool and highschool kids aren't made aware of this is really sad.

    February 7, 2011 at 3:45 am | Report abuse |
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