By now you’ve probably heard that Christina Aguilera botched the National Anthem lyrics at Super Bowl XLV in Dallas, and she has been berated in the media. I can’t defend her gaffe. She’s a professional performer, and she was performing in front of the largest television audience in history. There are also those who aren’t fond of vocalists who take the interpretation of the song too far from the mainstream. That’s more a matter of taste, but I understand their point with regard to respecting our nation’s anthem.
But here’s another angle to consider.
The one thing that irks me more than anything else when we reach this now iconic annual performance at the Super Bowl is when the performers lip synch a pre-recorded version of the song. And it was clear from the phrasing and tempo that she was going at this live. This is a live event, and the song should be sung live in the spirit of the event. Otherwise, you might as well just play a recording without anyone there.
Thanks to Aguilera for giving it a go.