« Science backs evolutionary theory | Main | Skeptical about global warming »

January 25, 2009

Hats off to Aretha

I hope the Smithsonian acquires Aretha Franklin’s beautiful “big bow” hat she wore at President Obama’s inauguration to display for future generations.

Put it with Lincoln’s stove-pipe hat or Louie Armstrong’s trumpet, but get it and keep it. It will forever be associated with Aretha’s breathtaking rendition of “My Country ’Tis of Thee” at this historic moment.

Ken Kelly


Ken Belly

Wow, to have a . . . thimble full of Aretha's talent! This empty-headed criticism is hard to take. Aretha was fabulous, breath-taking.


I listened to the inauguration live at work, then went home to catch it on youtube. When the video started, it showed a side view of Aretha and I was wondering why I didn't hear about someone charging the stage in a big bunny suit...


My husband's brother-in-law phoned yesterday to tell me a BBC newscaster announced that Aretha Franklin was about to perform "the American national anthem". Oops.


"I was a little uncomfortable, actually. She paused a bit too long on that first syllable."

You noticed that? So did I. Kind of a cringeworthy moment, wasn't it? Jon Stewart noticed it too. Aretha made The Daily Show that evening.

Pub 17



Aretha covered the Sex Pistols "God Save the Queen"? I sure am sorry I missed that!



Great post


I was a little uncomfortable, actually. She paused a bit too long on that first syllable.


Wait a minute . . . Aretha sang? Who could hear her voice over that loud hat?


Umm, I wouldn't exactly call it a breakthrough rendition. In fact, my British husband paused the broadcast at one point and asked why she was singing "God Save the Queen".

It was cold. She did as well as could be expected in that weather and in her condition. I wouldn't go overboard about her performance or her hat, which kind of reminded me of something the Queen would wear. Or Camilla.

I did love the military choir's version of the Star Spangled Banner, though. It was perfect, not embellished with pop-star warbling, and was performed in its purest and most beautiful form. Frankly, I'm sick of hearing it shrieked at sporting events. This was a nice change.

About KansasCity.com | About the Real Cities Network | Terms of Use & Privacy Statement | About Knight Ridder | Copyright