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We'll never forget these 5 Super Bowl national anthems

Whitney Houston undoubtedly tops the list.
Credit: George Rose/Getty Images
Whitney Houston sings the National Anthem before a game with the New York Giants taking on the Buffalo Bills prior to Super Bowl XXV at Tampa Stadium on January 27, 1991 in Tampa, Florida.

Every Super Bowl has kicked off with the national anthem since the first game in 1967. Some brought tears to our eyes, and others had us holding back laughs.

This year, award-winning singer and songwriter Demi Lovato will perform the anthem.

But here’s a look back at some of the best, and the worst, Super Bowl national anthems:

Whitney Houston

Whitney Houston’s 1991 performance in Tampa was arguably one of the greatest in history and set the standard for how the national anthem should be sung. People loved her rendition so much that it peaked at No. 20 on the Billboard Hot 100. It was later re-released after the Sept. 11 attacks and reached No. 6.

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The 2004 Super Bowl was hosted by Houston, so it only made sense for Houston-native Beyoncé to perform the national anthem. As the crowd displayed American flags throughout the stadium, Beyoncé perfectly hit every note. 

Jennifer Hudson

Jennifer Hudson didn’t hold back during her 2009 performance in Tampa. Supported by a full orchestra, Hudson absolutely crushed all of the national anthem’s high notes with incredible vocal power. It was the first time Hudson appeared publicly after the murders of her mother, brother and nephew the previous October.

Christina Aguilera 

Christina Aguilera was on a roll during the 2011 Super Bowl, but things went downhill about 40 seconds in. Aguilera completely messed up the lyrics in the fourth verse, singing, “What so proudly we watched at the twilight's last gleaming?” instead of “o’er the ramparts we watched were so gallantly streaming?”

Aretha Franklin

We all love the Queen of Soul, but Aretha Franklin’s 2006 performance of the national anthem in Detroit was disappointing. It was the first Super Bowl since Hurricane Katrina, so Franklin was joined by two New Orleans natives: Aaron Neville and Dr. John. With all that star power and a gospel choir, the performance should’ve been stunning. But it wasn’t.

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