February 6, 2011, - 10:17 pm

Dummy: Aguilera’s Botched Anthem – No Ramparts Watching; Where’s Whitney? (VIDEO)

By Debbie Schlussel

Whatta dummy-ette.  I knew my ears weren’t lying when I heard Christina Aguilera screw up the “Star Spangled Banner.”  Her version of the National Anthem–at least the one she sang at the beginning of tonight’s Super Bowl–doesn’t include the line, “O’er the ramparts we watched were so gallantly streaming.”  I thought I spied even some of the NFL players–not known for their Einsteinian qualities–looking at each other over her obvious screw-up.  Hey, that’s what happens when someone is more concerned with adding 15 syllables to every word in the song–“American Idol”-style–and uber-obsessed with sounding like a Black singer.  Actually knowing the lyrics falls by the wayside.  What ever happened to singing the words of a song without screaming and turning each word into a six-second, multi-syllabic moan?  Whitney Houston, didn’t have to do all that pretentious stuff.  She knew the words and sang it right . . . and beautifully. Compare the two, below. It’s night and day. She may be a recovering crack-whore now, but back in the day (1991–during the first Gulf War), Whitney Houston knew how it was done. Houston’s version was class, and Aguilera’s version was ass.

Looks like Jimmy Kimmel lost his bet–yes, you could actually have bet on this in Vegas:


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56 Responses

Aguilera is looking more and more like Cyndi Lauper. PUKE. She is all make-up and bright red lipstick.


CaliforniaScreaming on February 6, 2011 at 10:32 pm

You know what, I’m glad I didn’t catch all of it Debbie, I was a little too busy watching womens college basketball game (a game went into OT BTW), but when I switched the network, I couldn’t believe what I was hearing. I was saying to myself, why the hell is this girl mocking our anthem? If I was in Cowboy stadium this evening I would boo that girl and I wouldn’t mind if the fans say something negative to me, I’ll tell them why I booed her.

“A nation is identified by it’s borders, language & culture!”

Sean R. on February 6, 2011 at 10:39 pm

Christina Aguilera forgot one freakin’ line and everyone’s making it into a federal case. Give her a break!

Norman Blitzer on February 6, 2011 at 10:50 pm

    It’s not just forgetting a line though. Of course, the human element dictates that people can and will make mistakes.

    But it’s her treatment of the anthem — she sings it like she is constipated putting 20 syllables into every word. You can’t decipher one word fro, the next — it’s just a constant stream of moans and groans.

    I don’t think it’s the best treatment for the national anthem.

    Barry on February 7, 2011 at 12:45 am

      spelling mistake — should have said *from*

      Barry on February 7, 2011 at 12:46 am

Are we sure the word “class” pertains to any popular singer? “Cool,” of course, but, “class?” I beg to differ.

Actually, my younger brother has it right: the entire audience should be singing the national anthem! These sports events are the only times the song is sung!

It should never be an opportunity for a individual to try and show off. This is sacrilege. The anthem is for the the “community,” the people. Not for a self-aggrandizing solist, of any style.

Just an opinion, of course.

David Yeagley on February 6, 2011 at 10:52 pm

I think more than stupidity it is indifference; a lack of enough concern about our country and it’s anthem to bother to learn the words well enough and rehearse well enough to say the words (or some semblance of them) correctly. And she knows her own fan base couldn’t care less, unfortunately.

Little Al on February 6, 2011 at 10:55 pm

They make every word 20 syllables long to mask the fact that they can’t actually sing.

Hopewell on February 6, 2011 at 11:16 pm

    I beg to differ, Christina Aguilera has a great voice (take it from someone who’s been singing semi-professionally for 15 years), but tries to be always too much over the top when singing. This time it misfired badly.

    Luis on February 7, 2011 at 1:06 pm

I get damn tired of women trying to upstage a man’s event.
A dog baying at the moon would have sounded better than that Marxist scumbag.You could tell by the looks on the players faces that they wanted to get on with the show and get rid of the female grand stander.
At least we did not have to deal with the cameras being on the cheerleaders showing their asses and everything else.
Football in the old days was about mud, blood, beer, and ass kicking.

Pat on February 6, 2011 at 11:22 pm

    Pat, I agree with your post til an extent, you said:

    “At least we did not have to deal with the cameras being on the cheerleaders showing their asses and everything else.”

    I gotta disagree with you on that line Pat, you see Pat, cheerleading is a tradition in sports. And the cheerleaders don’t show their buttocks or private areas on cameras. Pat, what if there was a right wing government that seized power in this country and all of a sudden, they want to pass a bill that’ll outlaw cheerleading at sporting events, you know and I know that just about everybody will be outrage at the right wing government, including us conservatives will be outrage, not just liberals and people who do cheerleading. So both the Steelers and Packers don’t have cheerleaders for their organization and that’s why we didn’t see cheerleaders at the ball game last evening!

    “A nation is identified by it’s borders, language & culture!”

    Sean R. on February 7, 2011 at 10:39 am

It is just another example of narcissism and bad taste among so many celebrities in our country and those that excuse this type of thing. It is all about her showing off and not the anthem itself.

JM on February 6, 2011 at 11:22 pm

Hey Debbie –I agree with you BUT have to point out that Whitney Houston lip-synched when she did the national anthem at the super bowl. It’s easy to do it perfectly if you pre-record it.

M: Yes. Why did they stop doing that? Tonight’s botched, horrid version is a great example of why they need to go back to that. DS

Mominminnesota on February 6, 2011 at 11:34 pm

    Remembering there was a dustup in 1993 because Garth Brooks refused to prerecord the national anthem for the super bowl. At least he sang it live (and he got the words right).

    Mominminnesota on February 6, 2011 at 11:39 pm

I wonder if Christina Aguilara has any idea what Francis Scott Key went through that night in 1814, locked up by the Brits on the Tonnant, watching the horrific bombing of Ft. McHenry, that inspired him to pen what was then adopted as the National Anthem by Woodrow Wilson in 1816, and later signed by H. Hoover in 1931.

My guess is probably not…but be that as it may, we are certainly all human and subject to mistakes…however in this case, someone of her level should definatly take it seriously enough to do her utmost to nail it and really should not botch the Star Spangled Banner at this juscture in her career…

HB: She probably doesn’t even know who Key (or Wilson or Hoover) was. Bet she doesn’t know what a rampart is, either. Total airhead. . . but at least she could’ve gotten the words right to the one, simple, short song she was paid good money, tonight, to sing. DS

hill billy on February 6, 2011 at 11:47 pm

    I wonder if Christina Aguilara has any idea what Francis Scott Key went through that night in 1814, locked up by the Brits on the Tonnant, watching the horrific bombing of Ft. McHenry, that inspired him to pen what was then adopted as the National Anthem by Woodrow Wilson in 1816, and later signed by H. Hoover in 1931.

    How many American scholchildren today are taught the National Anthem, much less its story?

    Miranda Rose Smith on February 7, 2011 at 10:30 am

      Miranda Rose Smith, you made a little error in your post, you ment to say 1916 about former president Woodrow Wilson! Clearly Wilson wasn’t around in 1816, but your right Miranda, the kids these days don’t sing the national anthem in schools today, thanks to the educational system and the teachers union.

      “A nation is identified by it’s borders, language & culture!”

      Sean R. on February 7, 2011 at 10:45 am

        Dear Mr. R.: That wasn’t my post. I copied Hill Billy’s post verbatim, without paying much attention. He corrected himself (see above) and I should have done the same. Thanks. I should have spotted that error. Woodrow Wilson was President during World War I.
        “that inspired him to pen what was then adopted as the National Anthem by Woodrow Wilson in 1916, and later signed by H. Hoover in 1931.”

        Miranda Rose Smith on February 7, 2011 at 10:59 am

          (See below)

          Miranda Rose Smith on February 7, 2011 at 11:00 am

          Miranda, my apologies to you, I assume you made the same error in your post, but your right, you did cited what hill billy originally wrote in his or her post. I didn’t see any parenthesis in your post. And yes I saw hill billy’s post at the bottom, thanks for the information.

          “A nation is identified by it’s borders, language & culture!”

          Sean R. on February 7, 2011 at 11:10 am


hill billy on February 6, 2011 at 11:53 pm

    Dear Mr. R.: No need to apologize. I should have spotted the error myself. You were right.

    Miranda Rose Smith on February 8, 2011 at 5:40 am

I’m not American, but for me the best version of the ‘Star Spangled Banner’ I have heard is by Sandi Patty.

It conveyed the essence of the lyrics beautifully and with dignity. Further, the skill level of her voice is astounding and makes Christina Aguilera sound terrible.Further, it just shows how bad a singer Christina really is when she is unable to forego her silly vocal gymnastics and 20 syllables per word in order to perform her nation’s national anthem.

Christina’s attempt at acting ‘hip’, ‘cool’, ‘urban’, ‘soulful’ are contrived and tiresome. I cringe when she sings. That thing she does with her jaw, making it wobble like Oprah’s cellulite-ridden arse-cheeks is beyond annoying. lol

Barry on February 7, 2011 at 12:28 am

Also, BTW, an example of excess under a democracy.

Little Al on February 7, 2011 at 12:43 am

I don’t normally like it when an “artist” changes the National Anthem, but this 1983 clip of Marvin Gaye singing it is very cool.

But if you look at some of the other years he sang it, he botched it, same as a lot of other artists. Sometimes they get it right and it is so outstanding that it does portray the true meaning of the song and everybody feels it.

ender on February 7, 2011 at 1:33 am

I listened to about 20 seconds of her “styling”, and changed the channel.

Dr Dale on February 7, 2011 at 6:14 am

Debbie I love you dear, you always hit the mail on the head. I am black and I am so tired of white artists trying to sing like a black singer.. why?? why?? Everyone had their own style and talent.. I also hate to even hear black singers doing the same thing.. No need. Sing the anthem like it is suppose to be sung and treat it with respect. That simple.. save your entertainment gig for Hollywood, where anything stupid is applauded. The national anthem is a symbol of pride to our nation not a part of your own hollywood gig!!!

Tony on February 7, 2011 at 6:48 am

I couldn’t stand Aguilera’s faux soul singing before the Superbowl, and can’t stand her style even more today.

Oscar on February 7, 2011 at 8:20 am

They should have Rock acts, instead of the continued tired-ass Pop acts that have gone by the wayside years ago. Slash doesn’t count, he was there to receive a check and nothing more. Christina used to be eye candy, but the dope and hard lifestyle has taken it’s toll. I used to love ya, Christina, but I feel sorry for you now.

rammsack on February 7, 2011 at 8:39 am

I was curious how the national anthem used to be sung at sporting events and typed in “National Anthem 1970s” in YouTube. Here is a video of the Jackson 5 doing the national anthem in 1970: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6wInApkVeZ8

It is the way the national anthem should be done–no vocal gymnastics, no narcissism. It is about the lyrics and the flag.

Aguilera’s version shows how dumbed down our nation has become.

JM on February 7, 2011 at 9:30 am

    Vocal gymnastics — yes, that is what it is! I hate that stuff.

    Mominminnesota on February 7, 2011 at 12:46 pm

Those who have pointed out the lack of respect for the National Anthem are spot on.

Aguilara’s life is OOC (Out Of Control). The stabilizing force in her life was her husband Jordan Bratman. She has since kicked him to the curb (since having a baby with him…sorry celebrities REAL LIFE is hard and at the first go of challenges, you ought NOT give up and move on to the next stud so YOU can feel fulfilled) and has taken up with some DB-looking fool.

It was reported in the British papers a few weeks back an actor named Jeremey Renner (sp?) was disgusted and tweeted and that she got off-her-face at his party and ended up enebriated in his bed. She is all over gossip rags with the DB-looking stud and now her cuckolded hubby REFUSES to move out of their house (hope he stays there as long as he can) while she is shacking-up with the DB-looking stud in the same house. She has a small boy, too.

Stay classy CA. Your last CD was a disgusting disgrace and perhaps you ought to write songs about being a responsible mum in lieu of your vagina…believe me, NO ONE cares about that other than your DB-looking stud.

Don’t even get me going on her uvulating singing!

Skunky on February 7, 2011 at 10:41 am

Sure, Aguilera didn’t do an accurate job. But did you see the players during the Anthem? The grown men crying? I maintain that the emotion Christina helped invoke was far more powerful than any detraction caused by her screw-ups. (Still, I wouldn’t want her to sing the Anthem again.)

Solomon2 on February 7, 2011 at 11:48 am

    I never hear “The Star Spangled Banner” without remembering how Francis Scott Key stood all night on the British warship and watched the shelling of Fort McHenry.

    I never hear “HaTikva” without remembering Dov Gruner, of blessed memory, and the other Irgun fighters who sang it on the way to the gallows.

    Miranda Rose Smith on February 8, 2011 at 5:46 am

This is reason why I do not watch this pre-game stuff. In my opinion, the best version I have heard was played on an AM station in H-town every morning when they came on the air after 9/11. Faith Hill singing the National Anthem. They followed that with Ray Charles’ “America the Beautiful.” Tears.

WilliamMunny on February 7, 2011 at 12:09 pm

I know that when Whitney sang (or lip synced, whatever) the National Anthem we were at war but did you notice how many people in the crowd had an American flag? It seemed like everyone did. And was Whitney crying when she finished the song? It sure looked that way to me. I listened to maybe 15 seconds of Aguilera and turned down the volume. I don’t need to listen to her screeching and trying to look and/or act cool.

kenny komodo on February 7, 2011 at 12:22 pm

This is why I mute my TV whenever these so-called music acts try to sing the national anthem. Just sing the damn song and stop trying to be so fucking fancy with it. Show some respect, some class, and dignity to the song.

And then we get to the halftime show…which I also muted and just watched some dailymotion videos.

Squirrel3D on February 7, 2011 at 12:22 pm

Christina Aguilera has a great voice. I could listen to her sing all day.

However, I would vastly prefer her singing “The Star Spangled Banner” without embellishments.

Lady in Northern Virginia on February 7, 2011 at 12:58 pm

The tradition of singing the National Anthem at sporting events began during WWII, and has continued ever since. I know thatsome of you may consider me a wussy, but I tear up everytime I hear the National Anthem and Hatikva, the national anthems of two countries that are part of G-d’s work.

Let’s return to Opera singers performing the National Anthem, and teaching the song in our public schools. Political correctness be damned!

In three years, it will be the 200th anniversary of the writing of the words that became our national anthem, here in Maryland.

Jonathan Grant on February 7, 2011 at 1:37 pm

I not only don’t think she has a good voice, but I think she showed a total lack of respect for the song by making it all about her. That had to be the worst rendition I have ever heard.

Glenn E. Chatfield on February 7, 2011 at 1:43 pm

It’s a real pity they always stick to the one verse. The real power and punch of that song comes in the final verse.

Most Americans don’t even know that there are 4 verses. Even my hymnal has cut out one of the verses. Apparently the talk of blood washing out their foul footsteps’ pollution was too much for the chapel.

I was at a talent show, once, and a teenager got on stage, with his electric guitar, and announced that we should all stand for the national anthem. We looked at each other and laughed, sure it was a joke. Who does that? He was, however, perfectly serious, and would not begin until we all stood and showed our respect. And he did a bang-up job with the song, too! It’s a simple song, but requires range. Not such an issue on the guitar, perhaps, but for a vocal performer, it’s a challenge. Most people struggle at the rockets’ red glare.

Michelle on February 7, 2011 at 1:51 pm

Blame can only be placed on the goons that choose the anthem singers every year. Whoever picked Roseanne Barr years ago, should not only have been fired, but imprisoned. Apparently, they were promoted instead. The vocal masturbators like CA, are just doing what they do in every lame “hit” they record.

spiffo on February 7, 2011 at 2:12 pm

Thank you, Jose Feliciano ,the one that started all the caterwauling of the National Anthem as it were their song, before Game 5,1968 World Series,in Detroit.

Phineas on February 7, 2011 at 2:54 pm

i was so annoyed by the grossly inappropriate singing style of our anthem, i was having a total hissy fit and the wife shushed me…

ditto with the black-eyed peas… they were so effing awful i got up to go heat up ALL the remaining stuffed cabbages and homeade applesauce in the fridge, just for me.

that will teach you for shushing me.

howardroark43 on February 7, 2011 at 3:52 pm


    CornCoLeo on February 7, 2011 at 11:04 pm

Look up the bee-u-tee-ful job Adam Lambert does with the song. Emotional, stirring, great feeling for the words and spirit. Nope, I don’t have the link here, but just put in “Adam Lambert Star-Spangled Banner” and pull up the video.

That boy has 10 x’s the pipes Aguilara does, yet never feels the need to stretch every word into 15 syllables to preen for his audience.

impeachthedude on February 7, 2011 at 4:43 pm

Only have to wait until 2/20th for genuine respect for and a likely proper rendition of the National Anthem at a major event. THE DAYTONA 500!!!

Kent on February 7, 2011 at 5:39 pm

Three things.

Christina Aguilera is not white. She is Hispanic, and plenty of Hispanic singers “sing black” just as plenty “sing white” (and still more “sing Hispanic”).

Second, similar to Mariah Carey (who Aguilera has always stated was her role model) Aguilera is actually a talented singer and performer, but ruins this natural ability with terrible song choices and vocal performances. Aguilera needs a voice coach, and she also needs better songwriters and producers. Again, this is also a problem with Carey, who was never the same after she dropped Tommy Mattola’s artistic guidance.

Finally, the national anthem should be lip-synched, and the lip-synched version should be approved by the network a month before it airs (giving the network time for do-overs and if need be to find a replacement for stubborn/arrogant performers). Or as an alternative: we COULD get some of the MANY talented singers who AREN’T pop/rock stars. You know … opera singers, Broadway types etc. The sort of people who would actually take this opportunity seriously, sing the song correctly, and, I don’t know … PRACTICE? Ugh … the debasement of American popular culture continues.

And I didn’t watch the Super Bowl. Because of A) the Kim Kardashian ad and B) the Doritos commercial. And oh yeah … Ben Roethlisberger. Look, I wonder how many football fans have wives, mothers, daughters, etc. I wonder if Roethslisberger’s “alleged victims” are football fans. Or WERE football fans but aren’t anymore. Come to think of it, I wonder if Kobe Bryant’s “alleged victim” is a basketball fan, or if she was but isn’t anymore. And the families of 2 people killed by NFL players who were drunk driving and got off with practically no jail time … I wonder if they like the NFL. Anymore.

Oh, never mind …

Gerald on February 7, 2011 at 6:57 pm

    Christina Aguilera IS WHITE! She is Caucasian for goodness sake.Her mother and father are white.

    ‘Hispanic’ IS NOT A RACE — it’s a reference to culture. And many Hispanics are 100% white as they are black, Asian etc.Hispanic culture originally came from Europe which is where um, white people came/come from.

    The point Debbie is getting at I think (don’t wish to talk on behalf of anyone) is that she does a parody of what a black person ‘supposedly’ sounds like thus she effects a faux-soul sound. The media lap it up but ultimately it is very contrived.

    If Snoop Dog suddenly started trying to sing like Andrea Bocelli, we’d all laugh at him.

    Barry on February 7, 2011 at 7:26 pm

      Barry, you make a good point in that “Hispanic” is not a race. I am mexican, of spanish and irish ascent, and still qualify as “hispanic”.

      I also think that “black music” is a fallacy, a baseless racist prerogative that some people “own” a musical style because of their skin color… If Christina Aguilera or anyone else likes the style (I know I don’t) and is succesful at it, good for them. Can anyone say blacks or asians can’t be talented classical musicians? (that would be “white music”)
      Not for the last 40 years.

      Luis on February 7, 2011 at 11:27 pm

After hearing about it and finally seeing it I guess it wasn’t as bad as I was expecting. I’m kinda shocked that CA would mess up so badly since she normally is great live. I did like that it was a capella.

Of course the Whitney version was AWESOME — the orchestration especially — and it was in my hometown with the FL Orchestra — even better!

I do agree that it should be pre-recorded — then we wouldn’t have to deal with the aftermath.

Jennifer on February 7, 2011 at 7:07 pm

The botched line didn’t bother me that much. At least it provided a little comic relief from the balance of her performance. “Yodeling” is probably the best descriptor I have seen.

Roseanne Barr ACTED totally disgusting while doing the anthem at a baseball game some years back, but she somehow managed to SOUND better than this Super Bowl performance.

CornCoLeo on February 7, 2011 at 11:14 pm

I agree. Christina and her “vocal gymnastics” and screaming ruined the song way before she messed up the lyrics. That was just the icing on the cake. First, the national anthem is, and should be, one of our historical treasures! It sho…uld be respected and revered as such. Wailing away with such hysterical histrionics is disrespectful. Then, to totaly bungle the lyrics, to me, showed a lack of concern that her performance be correct and deserving of the honor of being allowed to perform it in such a public venue. The song must be sung, in English (that’s a different story), and correctly as written, with appropriate emotion and inflections. Upon hearing the anthem being sung correctly and reverently, a listener should be all puffed up with pride, with chests heaving and eyes full of tears. With her performance, I felt no pride, and the tears were of another nature.
I suggest Sandi Patty, one of my most favorite singers! Now this is one rendition that has me heaving and crying for the love, respect and allegiance I have to my country.


Musicman on February 8, 2011 at 6:21 am

Christina sang the anthem correctly several times before in other sporting events and in rehearsals before the Super Bowl, she just made a mistake singing it then. Mistakes happen, she was not disrespecting America or anything like that. Her biggest mistake was trying to over do it and change her normal singing style. If she just would have sang it normally there would not have been a big problem. I will also giver her props for actually singing it not lip-syncing.

Time Wave on February 9, 2011 at 10:46 am

Just remember with Whitney, her rendition was lip-synced, so I’m sure they had to do a number of takes before they got the right one! 😉 But, at least she got the words right!

Ivan on February 9, 2011 at 3:46 pm

That’s a mold-breaker. Great thnnikig!

Alex on April 13, 2011 at 7:03 pm

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