The singing of the National Anthem.
Once again, there is much gnashing of teeth in the land.
I am gnashing my teeth too, but not because Christina flubbed a line (every vocalist occasionally flubs a line in performance, folks -- it's inevitable, and the girl has apologized already).
I'm gnashing my teeth over the fact that no one seems willing to sing our National Anthem in the style in which it was composed and meant to be sung.
We don't need a new style for singing this most patriotic of songs. Musically and vocally it stands perfectly on its own and no amount of busy vocal embellishment (trills, turns, runs) can ever make it any better than it already is. In fact, I submit that the current fad of over-the-top vocal embellishment detracts from the beauty of the music.
I long for the days of Rosemary Clooney, who knew how to sing a song in a way that brought out the best of the melody as well as showcased her incredible vocal prowess.
Today's singers, courtesy of the proclivities of the current music industry, just don't have a clue, musically.
And that's sad.
To today's performers I say this admittedly cranky statement: if you can't sing the melody of the National Anthem without feeling compelled to put your individual vocal styling all over it, then please don't sing the National Anthem at all.