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As the front woman of the legendary rock band Heart, Ann Wilson has been performing in front of thousands-strong crowds for over 40 years. So most people expected an everyday performance when Wilson took the stage to sing "The Star-Spangled Banner" for the crowds at the Special Olympics opening ceremonies. However, things started off as anything but normal, with Wilson completely mishandling the national anthem's opening lines. Check out the faux pas below, which thankfully then led to a pretty stellar rendition of the song's second half.
As it normally goes with cringe-worthy mistakes made on live television, it's a lot easier to watch Ann Wilson's performance from behind around a dozen sets of partially spread-apart fingers. Considering "O say can you see" is one of the most well-known openings of any song ever, at least to U.S. citizens, it's all the more disconcerting that Wilson's rendition immediately began in the wrong place.
O, hey, does you see? Ohh, the bright burley light.
But hey, sometimes the songs that one knows the best can lead to the biggest brain farts when the pressure is on. And there was quite a bit of pressure imbued in taking center stage in Seattle's Husky Stadium to perform for all the athletes, military members and general spectators at the opening of this year's Special Olympics USA Games.
Some viewers took to Twitter to voice their confusion over Ann Wilson's version of the national anthem, wondering what was happening during those early lines. But it wasn't nearly as bad as it could have been, since Heart's co-founder recovered with more than enough time to win everyone back over to watch her stick the landing. Because regardless of what's actually coming out of her mouth, Wilson still has a fantastic set of pipes that only seem to sound better the louder she gets.
Having joined the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2013, with the late Chris Cornell doing the induction, Heart only released one more album in the years since, 2016's Beautiful Broken. Controversy sparked in August 2016 when Ann's husband Dean Wetter was arrested for choking and assaulting the teenage sons of Ann's sister Nancy Wilson (and Nancy's former husband Cameron Crowe) while outside a Heart concert. The incident, for which Wetter was just sentenced in May 2018, drove a wedge between the sisters, causing the band to go on a potentially permanent hiatus. Wilson does have a new solo album releasing in September, titled Immortal, which is full of covers honoring late musicians such as David Bowie, Amy Winehouse and Tom Petty.
Despite being a song that gets performed at basically every sports event out there, "The Star-Spangled Banner" can still obviously trip up even the most seasoned musicians. (People got really weirded out by Fergie's unique interpretation a few months ago, for instance.) Hopefully without any further trip-ups, the Special Olympics USA Games takes place from July 1-6 in Seattle, Washington.
Wondering what new and returning shows to watch in the meantime? Our summer premiere schedule will set you up with the best that primetime has to offer.