It takes a lot to make a performance of “The Star Spangled Banner” before the NBA All-Star Game trend higher on social media than the game itself, but Chaka Khan has managed what Fergie was able to two years ago, with a unique rendering of the National Anthem that threatened to render anything that followed an afterthought.
In 2018, Fergie seemed to almost be sex-ing up the anthem, performing it in a style some compared to Marilyn Monroe. Khan wasn’t doing anything nearly that conceptually risible, but she did bring a level of extreme melisma to her reading that not everyone seemed able to follow, to say the least.
We feel for you, Chaka Khan. Wearing what appeared to be a customized Chicago Bulls top sporting Michael Jordan’s retired No. 23, Khan offered up some of the vocal riffs and runs that she’s known for.
But when it comes to “The Star Spangled Banner,” less is sometimes more. “I adore Chaka Khan,” one person tweeted. “She is a living legend, but I DID NOT like that rendition of the Star Spangled Banner AT ALL. Lord help her.”
It’s a terrible song anyway. It glorifies war, it’s almost impossible for non-professionals to sing, and then there’s those verses in praise of slavery. Poor Chaka.