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10 of the most unforgettable national anthems ever performed

Whether good or not so good, they're certainly memorable!
national anthem
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/ Source: TODAY

Sunday's Super Bowl 54 will be kicked off by Demi Lovato performing the national anthem in Miami, Florida, at the Hard Rock Stadium.

Over the years, there have been some memorable renditions of "The Star-Spangled Banner" at major sporting events, some more unforgettable than others. From the likes of Whitney Houston to Lady Gaga as well as Steven Tyler and Fergie, we've rounded up ten of the most memorable performances of our nation's anthem.

1. Whitney Houston

Whitney Houston sang "The Star-Spangled Banner" at Super Bowl 25 in 1991 in Tampa alongside the Florida Orchestra. The superstar’s rendition is often revered at the best version of the national anthem due to her seemingly effortless performance, suiting the wave of patriotism flooding the United States at the height of the Persian Gulf War. Public demand led Arista Records to release the recording of her performance as a commercial single.

2. Jennifer Hudson

Jennifer Hudson's rendition of the national anthem at Super Bowl 43 in 2009 is seen as one of the closest performances to Houston's 1991 version. Hudson's powerful voice paired with the soft, theatrical arrangement brought "The Star-Spangled Banner" to new heights.

3. Lady Gaga

The year before her major halftime show at Super Bowl 51, Lady Gaga slowed things in 2016 for a stripped-down piano rendition. Featuring everything from airy high notes in her falsetto to a brazen belt at the end, Lady Gaga made it her own, all while donning red, white and blue sparkling attire and accessories.

4. Kelly Clarkson

At Super Bowl 46 in 2012, Kelly Clarkson took on the challenge of an a cappella performance, only accompanied by snare drums and a choir. Clarkson's vocals soared throughout her rendition, putting her flawless performance front and center. A decade after her "American Idol" crowning, the original idol proved she still had the chops needed to deliver a stirring rendition of this classic.

5. Beyoncé

Beyoncé tackled "The Star-Spangled Banner" back in 2004 in her home city of Houston at Super Bowl 38. Beyoncé climbed octaves throughout her entire performance, proving her vocal abilities once and for all, all while making her home city proud.

6. Christina Aguilera

Known for her powerful voice and occasionally over-the-top runs, Christina Aguilera took on the national anthem solo at Super Bowl 45 in 2011, opting for an a cappella performance sans any instrumentals. Her performance incorporated some creative liberties and missed a few key lyrics to "The Star-Spangled Banner."

“I can only hope that everyone could feel my love for this country and that the true spirit of its anthem still came through,” Aguilera said in a statement after that game.

7. Fergie

Everyone has rough days sometimes. Fergie's jazzy version of the national anthem at the NBA All-Star Game in 2018 didn't quite do it for the players and fans, and was seen as an "over-sexualized" version of the song.

"I've always been honored 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," she said in a statement at the time.

We still love you, Fergie Ferg!

8. Roseanne Barr

Roseanne Barr sang the national anthem at a San Diego Padres game in 1990 on a much smaller stage than any Super Bowl or All-Star Game. She didn't miss any of the lyrics, but she did unfortunately miss a majority of the notes.

President Bush called Barr’s performance “disgraceful” at the time, while opera star Robert Merrill called it “a national disgrace.”

9. Steven Tyler

Steven Tyler's solo rendition of the national anthem started off with him playing the harmonica in a star-printed suit. The rock singer did make it his own, singing (and screaming) it just as he would any Aerosmith tune.

”I got in trouble my whole life for having a big mouth,” Tyler said after his controversial performance, in which he changed the anthem’s closing words. ”I’m very proud to be an American, and live in the home of the brave.”

“While we are certainly sorry that some were offended, it was neither our intention nor that of Mr. Tyler to be disrespectful,” Indianapolis Motor Speedway President Tony George said in a statement. ”All of us have the utmost respect for the sacrifice our veterans have made for us.”

10. Carl Lewis

Former Olympian Carl Lewis is a legend in his own right, but certainly not for his 1993 national anthem performance at a Nets versus Bulls basketball game. The performance was missing some of the lyrics and was ultimately dubbed "Francis Scott Off-Key" by an ESPN sportscaster.

“An unintentionally comical rendition,” the Chicago Sun-Times called it at the time, writing that Lewis was “failing miserably to hit several high notes.”