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. MPL

    In her defense....She is from New York.
    It could have been worse...I'm not sure how wait...maybe if she was from New Jersey?
    The game was great, commercials and half-time sucked.

    February 7, 2011 at 5:03 am | Report abuse |
  2. whitmanguy

    I fondly recall Robert Goulet making a complete debacle of it at a heavyweight championship fight. He was egregiously drunk. It was great. I felt so patriotic.

    February 7, 2011 at 5:06 am | Report abuse |
  3. whitmanguy

    Our national anthem should be "This Land is Your Land" anyway. More socialistic.

    February 7, 2011 at 5:07 am | Report abuse |
  4. king theodore

    the tune for the song was an English drinking song, so she got it right in a way, and leads the way
    for the one octave song America the Beautiful to replace, the anthem was official in 1931, so not
    too late to change it, maybe with a rock beat, by CCR it would be better, but comments here are funny,
    arguing with strangers on the internet, the venters and ranters , trollers, or bowlers, with pseudonyms
    makes for good therapy maybe too, better than shooting up the place which makes the news too often

    February 7, 2011 at 5:26 am | Report abuse |
  5. cj

    The fans should be able to sing along proudly to our National Anthem. No way they were going to be able to do that last night.

    February 7, 2011 at 5:26 am | Report abuse |
  6. LanaHere

    The half time show was boring. The Black Eye Peas sounded terrible. There performance was awful. The only thing good about the half time show was when Usher showed up and sang/danced. In my opinion, the NFL should've signed Usher to do the whole half time show by himself. I can't get over how terrible the Black Eye Peas were.

    February 7, 2011 at 5:28 am | Report abuse |
  7. Mark M.

    ~Deion Sanders~ Said this on his Twitter feed;

    " Y'all leave Christina alone i was just informed that was the remix. The NFL was running behind so she was sweet enough to help us out."

    He is so,so,very lame as well first do not make excuses for a American not knowing the words to our counties national anthem we all learn the words to this song in grade school, or I hope kids still learn the words to this most important American song .Moreover there should never ever, ever for no reason be a remix version for this song it is just to important to play games with it's words. People in our counties armed forces die every day and night for the right for all of us to sing those most treasured words of national pride and freedom.Shame on her for not rehearsing it first and shame on Deion Sanders for defending her laziness.

    February 7, 2011 at 5:35 am | Report abuse |
  8. Tonyb

    Bigger things to worry about than some singer flubbing a line in the national anthem- move on small minds

    February 7, 2011 at 5:37 am | Report abuse |
    • Carl

      ...we see where your small mind was this morning...enough to make you comment here. Move on... 🙂 lol

      February 7, 2011 at 6:27 am | Report abuse |
  9. TiaNena

    I felt it under my skin. Super feeling, half the people did not notice the mistakes the singers make with the American Hymn. She is top of the best and performed very very good. No matter what the rest say. Thank you Cristina Aguilera, may the love for our Country unite us even more with Patriotism and great Democracy. "The BEST Country in the World" Yeah!!!!!

    February 7, 2011 at 5:39 am | Report abuse |
  10. whgage

    Celebrate the song and not the singer. Why do these singers think it's all about them?

    February 7, 2011 at 5:40 am | Report abuse |
    • Carson Link

      Why, because we the public feed them that power-Simple,sad but true

      February 7, 2011 at 7:40 am | Report abuse |
  11. Susan M

    I agree with Karl H. It was the worst rendition. It should not be screamed but sung with respect. I actually muted the television.

    February 7, 2011 at 5:42 am | Report abuse |
  12. Dane Gressett

    somebody said, "Everyone who sings the anthem flubs it." Really? Last night as A sang the song we were commenting, "Now days it all about showcasing one's voice and how you can mess with the melody and sound cool."

    Yep. It's not about the meaning of song anymore. Most people don't even care about the lyrics. It's really sad.

    I played High School sports in the 70's. Someone sang the national anthem at most football games. In all those years NO ONE flubbed the lyrics. Why? They mattered more than your talent. Period.

    This event reveals the slippery slope of our country.

    February 7, 2011 at 5:48 am | Report abuse |
  13. rmsbl4

    Well at least you know she wasn't lip-syncing.

    February 7, 2011 at 5:49 am | Report abuse |
  14. Jan

    Talk about abusing a song! Not even meaning flubbing the lines, she SO over-sang it, it was horrible, plus all that stupid over the top vibrato she does will kill anything. Gawd that was horrid, and the joke is on her, she is so full of herself, she thinks she's good, and what in the world has she done to her appearance, she even looks worse than she sings, if that's possible. ! What a way to disrespect our National Anthem. Who is the fool that picked her? Plus the Blacked Eyes Peas and Fergie should have been booed off, what a pathetic joke they were.

    February 7, 2011 at 5:50 am | Report abuse |
  15. Dan P

    This was our national anthem, not "American Idol" tryouts
    Sing the song without the vocal exercises, the way it was meant to be sung.
    Anyone can miss a line, but the extra screaming was unnecessary.

    February 7, 2011 at 5:52 am | Report abuse |
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