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. JusticePrevails

    FAIL! oopsy!

    February 7, 2011 at 11:40 am | Report abuse |
  2. ClosetIguana

    Can you say "over sing"? Christina give it a rest.

    February 7, 2011 at 11:40 am | Report abuse |
  3. cshew

    She sings better than us and she makes more money than us. She is also human so people need to move on because she done a great job. Varriation is what makes music so great! I enjoyed her rendention!

    February 7, 2011 at 11:41 am | Report abuse |
  4. Atlanta

    If she had spent as much time going over the words as she did with that tortured arrangement or her makeup, then there might have only been two mistakes.

    February 7, 2011 at 11:43 am | Report abuse |
  5. gmiller8

    I personally don't think it is so terrible that she had a slight mix up in word. She sang the National Anthem twice in the NBA Finals before without any mistakes. I believe her when she says the simply got caught up in the moment. Either way, she is human and we all make mistakes.

    February 7, 2011 at 11:43 am | Report abuse |
  6. kurebeachbum

    To get back on subject, I can't imagen singing the national anthem at the superbowl, the biggest sports event in America. Kudos to Christina; everyone gets nervous at some point, and everyone makes mistakes.

    February 7, 2011 at 11:45 am | Report abuse |
  7. mnance210

    Christina Aguilera did not ruin the National Anthem and she did not ruin the Super Bowl. She simply messed up like all people do daily. Messing up the National Anthem is not as big of a deal as everyone makes it out to be. Aguilera did not mess up on purpose. It was an honest mistake and the fact that she sang it twice last year at the NBA finals without error proves it.

    February 7, 2011 at 11:46 am | Report abuse |
  8. That's what she

    Wow. People are making such a big deal out of this. Yes she messed up. Everyone does. It's a simple lyrical mistake. I personally think she over-personalized it, but she has the right to sing it so. What's wrong with being creative? Keep going Aguilera, I support you.

    February 7, 2011 at 11:48 am | Report abuse |
    • Billy Z

      Yeah, see the thing is: she's been singing the SSB at televised pro sporting events since she was 11 – she should have it down pat by now.

      February 7, 2011 at 11:54 am | Report abuse |
  9. 0beaumartin0

    I believe that Aguilera's performance was poor not because of her mistake in the Anthem itself, but rather her personalization of it. This is our nations Anthem... when it was wrote in 1814 as a part of a poem, Francis Scott Key (the amateur poet of said Anthem) meant for this to be a beautiful song. Christina Aguilera's version was far from beautiful.

    February 7, 2011 at 11:48 am | Report abuse |
  10. Adam

    For me it wasn't the missed words so much. Everyone misses words or gets nervous. It was the ridiculous way she sang the song. This is our National Anthem. It's a symbol of our country just as much as the flag is. You don't go embellishing the flag when you hang it do you? You shouldn't embellish the National Anthem when you sing it. It is the one song that should be sung as written every time. Yet singers constantly feel the need to "interpret" it and add notes and sing it differently. That song represents this country and should be given the dignity and honor it deserves. It represents the many men and women who have bled and died for this country. It is a sacred hymn to our country.

    Everyone can get nervous and miss some words, that's human. But to consciously choose to alter the song, that is where she blew it. Plain and simply put, singing the National Anthem in ANY manner other than that which it was written is like hanging a burning flag upside down.

    February 7, 2011 at 11:50 am | Report abuse |
    • Alexis

      Thank you for putting that so poetically!
      I agree.

      February 7, 2011 at 3:53 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Navyvet8192

    C'MON PEOPLE, This isn't "Rocket Science"!!! Bush was there, Blame Him! Condi Too!!! I was wondering, do they all live together in Crawford now at the compound with the American branch of the Saudi Royal Family??? Have a great day all!

    February 7, 2011 at 11:50 am | Report abuse |
  12. Tom

    After a performance that sounded like someone was strangling a cat, plus flubbed lines, this bimbo then had the audacity to stand there afterwards beaming and saying thank-you. As if SHE was being applauded for doing something great. What an ego. These self-inflated bozos fail to recognize that singing the national anthem is NOT about them. Instead of what should have been a moment of national pride, what resulted was a national embarassment. Who the heck chose her?

    February 7, 2011 at 11:51 am | Report abuse |
  13. Bob

    not bad considering the worst i've ever heard of

    February 7, 2011 at 11:52 am | Report abuse |
  14. Carlos Montes

    " I just got lost in the moment of the song? "... I really tought you were a professional, sing the anthem with the respect that requires, don't try to advertise yourself for your next gig or maybe I' ll send my grandson to teach you the lyrics of the National Anthem.

    February 7, 2011 at 11:53 am | Report abuse |
  15. David C

    I miss Enrico Palozzo.

    February 7, 2011 at 11:53 am | Report abuse |
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