Fergie took a risk by jazzing up the Star-Spangled Banner at the NBA All-Star game and it blew up in her face. Her performance earned a lot of backlash, as many viewers felt it was inappropriate.
On the Inside the NBA Halftime Report, Charles Barkley clowned Fergie for her performance.
“Even before the segment could start, Barkley was already laughing. He then asked the panel, “Can we talk about Fergie’s national anthem?”
Shaquille O’Neal interrupted the former MVP, “Oh stop. Don’t do that. Don’t do that to my Fergie. Leave her alone. Fergie, I love you. It was different, it was sexy. I like it.
Barkley then retorted, “Damn right it was different. I needed a cigarette after that.”
Roseanne Barr even added her own opinion as she said that her performance was “better lowkey.”
Fergie then released a statement apologizing for her performance.
“I’ve always been honored and proud to perform the national anthem and last night I wanted to try something special for the NBA,” it read.
“I’m a risk taker artistically, but clearly this rendition didn’t strike the intended tone,” the former Black Eyed Peas frontwoman said. “I love this country and honestly tried my best.”
Perhaps nobody epitomizes what everybody else was feeling better than Draymond Green, who was caught on camera with his jaw dropping. When he realized that there’s a camera on him, he could only laugh.
“I don’t know, man, it’s the national anthem,” he told reporters afterwards, clearly holding his laughter.
ESPN, meanwhile, suggested that it’s too early to pan Fergie’s performance even if the knee-jerk reaction is to mock it just because of how different it is. For instance, when Marvin Gaye gave “The Star-Spangled Banner” his own signature R&B twist in 1983, he was initially ridiculed. Now, it’s considered an artistic benchmark for performers on how to play the national anthem.