Multiple Grammy Award winning artist Christina Aguilera made a whopper of a mistake as she sang America's national anthem prior to the kickoff of Super Bowl XLV. Following along with Aguilera's song last night, I recall thinking, "That doesn't sound right." My wife caught it just as quickly, saying, "She screwed up."
Sure enough, Aguilera fumbled the line "O'er the ramparts we watched, were so gallantly streaming" by singing instead "What so proudly we watched at the twilight's last reaming." Backstage, Aguilera was reportedly "devastated" by the error.
She released a statement after the game saying, "I can only hope that everyone could feel my love for this country and that the true spirit of its anthem still came through."
I'll give Aguilera credit for her enthusiasm and heart, which certainly came through in her rendition of "The Star-Spangled Banner" last night. (Though I personally prefer a more traditional, straight-up singing of the national anthem). Nevertheless, when you're tapped to sing the nation's most famous song on the biggest sports night of the year, you'd think that a professional musician would study and rehearse enough in advance to give an error-free performance. As the Marines are fond of saying: "Proper prior planning prevents poor performance."
As to what Francis Scott Key would've thought, that's hard to say, but one can certainly imagine him in the stands last night, shaking his head and thinking: "That's not what I wrote."