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. cat

    what is she mexican?

    February 6, 2011 at 9:58 pm | Report abuse |
    • Rod Venger

      Her father supposedly was from Eduador, mother Irish, Welsh, German. Woof!

      February 6, 2011 at 10:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • Really???

      Are you sure she's part Irish. I couldn't tell it from her singing 😉

      February 6, 2011 at 11:54 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Randall

    She may have screwed it up, but she's still HOT.

    February 6, 2011 at 10:00 pm | Report abuse |
    • kathy

      You have a terrible taste in women!! She is a total loser!!

      February 6, 2011 at 10:30 pm | Report abuse |
  3. JAMES H

    The Anthem sucks. When will we replace it with "America The Beautiful"?? A much better, appropriate song. The Anthem is outdated.

    February 6, 2011 at 10:00 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Mike Roterra

    The crowd did not cheer for her, they cheered when our troops in Afghanistan were shown on the jumbo-tron. Another noticable ovation was when President Bush was shown on the screen later in the anthem. Leave it to CNN to try to give to a worthless popstar the respect intended for our troops.

    February 6, 2011 at 10:00 pm | Report abuse |
  5. jasper

    Is it just me or did Aguilera look a lot like Divine?!?!

    February 6, 2011 at 10:00 pm | Report abuse |
    • moop

      Exactly right Jasper!!

      February 7, 2011 at 6:17 pm | Report abuse |
  6. JP

    Worst anthem rendition, period and by far the worst half time show ever! I guess I will be switching over to the Puppy Bowl!

    February 6, 2011 at 10:01 pm | Report abuse |
    • Thomas in Vancouver

      Google "Roseanne" and "National Anthem" if you want to hear the worst rendition ever.

      February 6, 2011 at 10:24 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Sunshine

    Given that half/three-quarters of the "singers" today .... can't sing... you get what you pay for. Ever since Rosanne decided to murder the National Anthem, it's been an open season for garbage.

    February 6, 2011 at 10:02 pm | Report abuse |
  8. kablooie

    people make mistakes...unfortunately, her mistake was made in front of millions. for those that are trashing her..let's hope the next time you make a big mistake, that people don't show you the same mercy that you showed her.

    February 6, 2011 at 10:02 pm | Report abuse |
  9. betty

    She always screws up the anthem. Just sing the song the way it is supposed to be sung and leave out all the crazy stuff. Carrie Underwood, now there is someone who can sing the anthem!

    February 6, 2011 at 10:02 pm | Report abuse |
  10. LMD

    I agree it was trashed. We should replace the Star Spangled Banner as the National Anthem with America the Beautiful. Seems more people know the words and it is at least an upbeat tune. Overall between the ads,the anthem,the acoustics for half-time,this was a miserable Stupid Bowl.

    February 6, 2011 at 10:03 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Jan

    The problem with singers "forgetting" the lyrics is that they think of it as a song, music and words, and forget that it is a story.

    As told on this website:

    "Listen closely to the words and it tells of a highly emotional moment in US history when the war with the British was being fought and of one man's relief in seeing the US flag still flying after a vicious bombardment."
    "In the dark of the night of the 13th, the shelling suddenly stopped. Through the darkness they couldn't tell whether the British forces had been defeated, or the fort had fallen."
    "As the rain cleared, and the sun began to rise, (Francis Scott) Key peered through the lifting darkness anxious to see if the flag they had seen the night before was still flying. And so it was that he scribbled on the back of an envelope the first lines of a poem he called Defense of Fort McHenry."

    "Oh, say can you see..."

    February 6, 2011 at 10:06 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Really???

    I guess the memory is the first thing to go. Plus she needs to learn to sing on key, those sour notes made me wince. Her kind are only cute when they're young.

    February 6, 2011 at 10:06 pm | Report abuse |
    • Ric

      what do you mean her kind ??

      February 6, 2011 at 10:27 pm | Report abuse |
    • Really???

      Ric didn't your mother ever warn you about women like her?

      February 6, 2011 at 11:58 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Sunshine

    I miss the days when respect was paid to America, to our fighting troops and our small towns and their businesses. Our citizens these days want to ignore ALL those and exhibit no respect whatsover. It's all in what benefits/enhances them.

    February 6, 2011 at 10:07 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Brian

    Is this trash even American? Probably an illegal

    February 6, 2011 at 10:07 pm | Report abuse |
    • Thomas in Vancouver

      Yeah! This illegal snuck in from Staten Island to get into America! Send her back!

      February 6, 2011 at 10:25 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Sandy

    Very disappointed in her rendition. It was an opportunity to perform with honor and respect for our freedom fighters, yet she performed with runs throughout the song to showcase her range. Not to mention the flub !!!

    February 6, 2011 at 10:07 pm | Report abuse |
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