The 42-year-old singer performed the ‘Star-Spangled Banner’ at Los Angeles’ Staples Center over the weekend ahead of the annual exhibition basketball match, and was slammed for the rendition by celebrities and viewers alike.
And now, the Black Eyed Peas singer has issued a formal statement in which she apologised for the slowed-down and divisive performance, stating she “tried her best” to do something different.
In her statement, she said: “I’ve always been honoured and proud to perform the national anthem and last night I wanted to try something special for the NBA. I’m a risk taker artistically, but clearly this rendition didn’t strike the intended tone. I love this country and honestly tried my best.”
Fergie’s statement comes after several fans branded the performance as “the worst ever”, and many celebrities took to social media to express their confusion at the whole pre-match display.
Roseanne Barr – who performed a crotch-grabbing rendition of the tune in 1990 – wrote on Twitter: “Who saw Fergie’s national anthem performance at the NBA All Star Game? I think mine was better lowkey.”
As well as the national anthem, the pre-match entertainment at the All-Star game featured a 15-minute opener from Kevin Hart, and the whole thing left Khloe Kardashian “confused”.
She tweeted: “This All Star opening is confusing me. WTF is going on? Anyone?”
Not everyone slammed Fergie’s performance though, as Mariah Carey – who had her fair share of criticism after her New Year’s Eve performance in 2016 was slammed when it was plagued by technical difficulties – offered words of wisdom to the fellow singer when she told her to ignore the haters.
When asked if she had any advice for Fergie, 47-year-old Mariah simply said: “Darling, no one needs to listen to that [criticism]!”