In Grand Super Bowl Tradition, Another Celebrity Flubs The National Anthem

Christina Aguilera became the latest in a long line of celebrities to take on the National Anthem at the Super Bowl, and lose:

The Star-Spangled Banner can be a notoriously difficult song to sing, with its broad range and piercing high notes. But usually, the lyrics work out just fine.

At the opening of Super Bowl XLV, less than a minute into the song, Christina Aguilera mangled some words of the national anthem.

Instead of “O’er the ramparts we watch’d, were so gallantly streaming,” Ms. Aguilera belted out, “What so proudly we watched at the twilight’s last reaming.” That line was a repeat of one she’d already sung a few seconds earlier, except with some personal embellishments, like her replacement of the word “gleaming” with “reaming.”

Ms. Aguilera’s flub was heard by tens of millions of viewers. Twitter was immediately abuzz with talk of her mistake, and by the third quarter her Wikipedia page was changed to include the incident.

“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 said in a statement after the performance, The Associated Press reported.

It’s not the easiest song in the world to sing, of course, and these celebrities seem to feel compelled to outdo themselves during their two minutes on the world stage. Nonetheless, I’ve gotten to the point where I feel like the NFL should either find a decent singer or just not do the Anthem at all.

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Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug Mataconis held a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010 and contributed a staggering 16,483 posts before his retirement in January 2020. He passed far too young in July 2021.


  1. Boyd says:

    Wait…are you saying that Christina Aguilera is not a decent singer? While I really didn’t like her “interpretation” of the National Anthem, and she obviously blew the words, I’m not really sure what standard you must use to not put her in the category of “decent singers.”

  2. JKB says:

    I believe he means a non celebrity since the “singers” don’t seem willing to put in the effort to learn how to do the song properly and correctly. Plus, who thought that “interpretation” would be good? Don’t these people have playback or did she not practice the song before going live?

  3. John Hannaford says:

    Since the singing of the anthem has become a serial competition amongst divas, perhaps a celebrity judging panel could be added next year.

  4. G.A.Phillips says:

    She is one of the greatest singers we have, not that I listen to much of the crap she sings. But man, record it and lip sync it! It’s the Super Bowl!!!! The Super Bowl with the GREEN BAY PACKERS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    And get a freaking band that is capable of prefoming live for half time, WTP!!!!!!!!!!

  5. G.A.Phillips says:
  6. Janis Gore says:

    What happened to the lights under the stage on the upward stroke of the “V” during the “love” portion of the performance at halftime?

    So that was the Peas. I haven’t missed much.

  7. Janis Gore says:

    Such an old girl. When I see “Fergie,” I think “Duchess of York.”