R. Kelly Pisses All Over National Anthem

Posted in Boxing, The World Of Entertainment at 10:31 pm by

Prior to tonight’s Jermain Taylor/Bernard Hopkins middleweight title re-match, Jim DeRogatis nemesis R. Kelly performed a vaguely new jack-ish version of “The Star Spangled Banner” that was as lengthy as it was hacktastic. Kelly, introduced by Michael Buffer as “Jive Recording Artist….Mr. Show Business” (scoffed Lady CSTB, “yeah, ‘show me your daughters and I’ll do my business on them'”) was roundly booed by the Las Vegas audience, presumably not packed with “Boondocks” fans.

Though the sight of Oscar De La Hoya struggling to clap in time with the not-s0-phat beats couldn’t have helped much, this was all on Kelly — I can only imagine how much that great patriot Ronnie Isley would’ve been offended (and then left the younger vocalist to die in the Nevada desert). Kelly can now add his name to the pantheon of Rosanne Barr, Carl Lewis and Liz Phair in offending millions while performing a universally loved tribute to America, a pretty neat trick. I’ve finally found something about him to admire.

Gary Sheffield’s little mustache was unavailable for comment.

20 responses to “R. Kelly Pisses All Over National Anthem”

  1. ben schwartz says:

    Could you actually pack an auditorium with “Boondocks” fans?


  2. KC says:

    Now I’m a Boondocks fan but Kelly really jacked up the national anthem

  3. jose says:

    I myself was offended when R.Kelly performed the national anthem.I served my country proudly and for some jackass to piss on all of those who gave thier lives for old glory is disgusting. Shame on you mr. “show buisness”.

  4. JUAN J. APONTE says:

    A lot of people that hated the way R. Kelly performed the national anthem will probably remain silent for fear of being accused of racism. Not me! A lot of African-Americans have sung our national anthem beautifully, adding soul to it, while singing it accapella. R. Kelly’s rendition was disgusting. Did he think he was at a rap concert? Can you imagine how many people would be up in arms if a latino singer got up on stage and did the anthem with a latin beat? Or a if Country singer added some fiddles and Hee-haw to it?

  5. CSTB says:

    For the record, I would like to state the entire purpose of this post was to take an easy, gratuitous shot at R. Kelly. While Kelly’s interpretation of the national anthem wasn’t quite Marvin Gaye at the NBA All-Star Game, there was absolutely nothing offensive about it — unless you’ve got something against Casio beats. “Goofy”, I can buy. But “disgusting” is a gross overstatement (and besides, that’s my department).

    And let’s face it — the song is pretty weak. Surely Babyface and L.A. Reid could come up with something better?

  6. Shane Russell says:

    Personally, if he had just sung the anthem without the “somebody” and the “clap your hands” and without the dancers “steppin in the name of the USA,” it would’ve been just fine. As a black young man, I was offended. Thank you, R. Kelly. At this rate, Juneteenth will never become a national holiday and there never will be a black president.

  7. CSTB says:

    I think the entire month of june oughta be a holiday.

    in all seriousness, i’d like to hope that R. Kelly would have no greater or lesser impact on a black candidate’s chances than Liz Phair might determine those of Hillary Clinton.

  8. Tomika Murry says:

    You know, I’m a die hard R Kelly fan but I must admit that he set us black people back about 10yrs by disrespecting the national anthem! Will somebody let him know that if nothing else, the national anthem is one song that americans of all nationalities hold high regard and pride for. In my opinion to spruce up the song a bit is okay but to ballroom dance, well that just crossed the line. I was highly embarrassed and I sure hope he was afterwards. Peace:0)

  9. Response To Shane Russell says:

    Mr.Shane Russell, why is it that you are ashamed as a “young black male” and not just ashamed as an american. People like you are the reason why there will never be a black president. The ignorance of one person shouldn’t reflect negatively on their race. Just look at George Bush (Jr and Sr), and white people still get their way. Just as Rosann Barr’s performance had nothing to do with her being white, R. Kelly’s performance had nothing to do with race and yet a few ignorant white people couldn’t resist getting on here and making this a black/white issue and your small mind fell right into place. Hey Shane “u’s b free naw” stop sniffing for browny points and be proud of your race, after all we still have to claim you.

  10. Adam says:

    think positvely…at least he didn’t pee on anybody in the ring

  11. CSTB says:


    with all due respect, that’s fucking retarded. Kelly’s star mangled banner was pretty goofy but no more or less wack than if they’d asked Wayne Newton to take a crack at it. For Kelly to really set the cause of black people back ten years, he’ll have to do something a little more significant than be the support act for someone else’s PPV.

    And all Americans most certainly do not hold the national anthem in high regard. I’m as American as John Wayne, Audie Murphy and Mike Doskocil, and I think it’s a crummy tune.

  12. BWC says:

    I didn’t hear the way Kelly sung the anthem, but just reading the articules and comments lets me know that Kelly has lived up to my expectations of a non singer. The fact that he has to do a story line to sell record (in the closet) and steps songs shows he has limited talent as a singer. Yes he writes greats songs for other to sing and he should stick to that. Stepping to the National Anthem what was he thinking? Oh I’m sorry he wasn’t.

  13. Terrance says:

    I talked with R. Kelly prior to his singing the National Anthem and i was also one of dancers. Before I address those of you who are now feel “ashamed of being black” because of the song, I must first say that R. Kelly had no intentions of being disrespectful to the country. As a matter of fact, we heard a pre-release of a new album for the soldier and those affected by Hurricane Katrina called “Relief.” Nevertheless, R is certainly not embarrassed, as his motivation came from individuals like Marvin Gaye and Jose Feliciano, who also offered there own rendentions of the Anthem. Furthermore, if you are of “Black Culture” then you should certainly understand the difference between R&B and Hip Hop…the track was certainly mellow and mimicked, the Marvin Gaye inspired track, “If I could make the world dance.” There was no Hip Hop in the track. Still, everyone is entitled to their opinion, and the fact that people found the song “wack” and “disrespectful” is totally fine…this is America!! On the other hand, all these Uncle Tom assed posts are what you should really be ashamed of. This setting Black people back shit is ridiculous! Certainly, R. Kelly’s version of the song does not possess that kind of power. Moreoever, it has been the very nature of the African American culture to take that which has oppressed us, and turn it into something we can dance, sing, and/or fight about. Since the song is somehow reflective of our culture, discuss the travesty of slavery, racism, gentrification, and poverty’s affect on Black people here in America. Considering the plight of Black people in America, we should be able to dance, clap, sing, and anything else as long as it’s positive. R. Kelly has a mix of extremely negative and positive, as we all do as humans, but in this situation I respected his creativity and the fact that he dared to be different, something many people never do…for fear of being judged!!

  14. the tone of the Kelly haters on this thread really tells you all you need to know about whether Kelly’s on the right track or not

  15. Orlantha says:

    I saw R’s rendition of the anthem and the moment i saw the dancers, i knew there would be backlash. would i have chosen to sing it that way, no, but i’m not out there making records either. i don’t think there was anything disrespectful about it, corny… maybe. its a song. he didn’t burn a flag or anything of that nature. he tried to put R Kelly’s spin on it, the way Whitney Houston put her spin on it at the olympics, etc. people need to get over it… and i am not a huge fan of r kelly either! people need to grow up and see it for what it was, out of tune and tacky… not disrespectful.

  16. Jon Solomon says:

    Anyone have an mp3? Must hear.

  17. Otis says:

    It’s crazy how people respond when there is something out of the normal. True enough the national anthem is a “sacred” and dear song to us americans but at least P. Diddy didn’t do it. He would have remixed it. And lord knows what the backlash would have been for that. He put his spin so what. It was entertaining and enjoyable. I was steppin’ with them. For you who want to make this a racial issue you can really forget about it. Cause if we break the actual event down to race then we should have joined hands and sang “Lift Ev’ry Voice” because both boxers where “african”-american, black, etc. or the fat guy off of “Coming to America” should have gotten up and sang a African song. People must remember that we are all Americans. America is a salad bowl or melting pot(whomever you listen to) so tradition will have a lil “twang” to it. Let’s embrace the new version of the song and enjoy R’s genius and talent.

  18. Rsmooth says:

    I think anyone who was affended, upset, and ashamed at what R. Kelly did with the anthem are completely losers. Look at Al Sharton and Jessie Jackson them clowns are the reason blacks will not have any political power. R. Kelly is an entertainer. That was entertainment. I was in the military if was in Iraq right now I would have steppin right along with him. The fact of the matter is this. If you were black and was offended look at yourself and say I am an idiot. If you were anything else who gives a shit what you think. It was a song and he blessed it the best way he know how. Eveyone who sings it, changes it in some way. Went it is replayed on HBO I will be steppin along with them. BWC I am feelin you the rest of you cats go find yourself. Most people do not like because you can not move to the music you have no rythm no soul.

  19. Brian says:

    I think we as black people need to be proud that a black performer had the audacity to add a little bit of our culture to a song that did not even have us in mind when it was composed. Isn’t that what America is all about, the freedom of self-expression and the celebration of a heterogenous culture?

    A little overboard, perhaps. But my brothers and sisters, if you are ashamed of it, then you are ashamed of the soul and spirit that makes our race and culture unique. Not saying you have to stand up and cheer R. Kelly by any means, but be proud of your culture.

    God bless you all.

  20. CSTB says:

    Rsmooth, when both Sharpton and Jackson have garnered more votes in elections than other candidates with more dough (and in some cases, guys who’ve held elective office before), how can you claim they don’t have any political power?

    This entire thread is dopier than the Deadspin comments section. In the interests of saving you all some valuable time and energy, I’ll spell the entire thing out for you.

    a) R. Kelly is a hack.
    b) “The Star Spangled Banner” sucks
    c) Kelly’s version of the above, while utterly cheesy, was performed in that oh-so-solemn setting of a Las Vegas boxing match, and as such, shouldn’t have really freaked out anyone, other than persons the singer has sexually assaulted. If I suggested otherwise in my original post, that was a little something I like to call “a joke”.
    d) Black Americans are no more or less accountable for R. Kelly’s dubious display of artistry than all White Americans should be blamed for Scott Stapp.
    e) word up to Larry Merchant, Max Kellerman, Emmanuel Steward and Bob “Jean Louis” Costas for telling HBO PPV viewers they’d just spent $49.95 for a terrible boxing match.

    I’m trapped in the comments!