Things That Tick Me Off: Steven Tyler

This week, Steven Tyler — formerly of Aerosmith and presently of American Idol — has made my Things That Tick Me Off list. I watched the two playoff games last night, but the Ravens-Patriots Game began with one of the most painful renditions of the national anthem in the history of mankind by Tyler, who appeared to be offering a rendition (below) of what the song if it was played by strangling a cat. Of course, now that he has made our “Things That Tick Me Off” list I expect his television and singing career will now be over.

Fortunately, Kristin Chenoweth restored the dignity of the nation by singing at the Giants-49ers game. It was hard to tell it was the same song. I am a big fan of Chenoweth from her legendary performances in Wicked. For Broadway musical fans, she is a standout talent and she thrilled the crowd with an awesome performance. I was very sad for the 49ers on the loss (which looked a lot like the loss by the Bears to the Broncos with an disastrous fumble in overtime). It is incredible that people have made death threats against Kyle Williams for his fumble . Bears fans know how disappointing such moments can be but I saw the play and only felt bad for Williams. He was going all out to try to gain yards for his team. However, Chenoweth left millions with a wonderful musical memory that cleared the palate for those of us coming over from the Patriots game.

I have never watched American Idol (a commitment I hope to carry with me to the grave), but I fail to see how Tyler can cast judgment on others when offering such a dismal performance. What I cannot understand is how the organizers would pick Tyler over a Vaudeville one-man-band or twenty trained barking dogs.

You can compare the two below:

35 thoughts on “Things That Tick Me Off: Steven Tyler”

  1. What’s up to all, how is everything, I think every one is getting more from this
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  2. Jonathann… You’re letting your ‘old guy’ show a bit too much. Get a grip.. It’s Stephen Tyler… He’s a Rock Star…. GE over it!

  3. I’d like to go back to the practice of a songmeister leading the audience in singing the National Anthem; the poor singing of the audience would neutralize the poor singing of the guest singer.

  4. Blouise –

    Thanks so much for posting that video. Everyone who sings the anthem before a game should listen and understand what is expected.

  5. Why has chasing after a rabbit to see who gets to eat tonight, degraded to games whose presentation reminds us of war? My team vs your team and patriotism and all that.

    Fortunately, some reading of the book Mike promoted, and particularly taking of the test, should tell you a bit. What was your score? Mine was 27. But then I’ve been anti-authoritarian in both meanings since I was seven.

    Only two have commented the militarism; one pro, one con. Is the subject tabu here? Or just worn out as a topic?
    And yes, I did active military service; two years as an officer. But I was younger and had other interests.
    Now I realize why it was The Starspangled that got the nod over America the beautiful.
    Father knows best as does Big Brother and Big Sis; the authoritarian creed.

  6. Mike S.,

    You called it (Tyler’s appearance at the game as a promo) … he’s been all over the talk shows for the last couple of weeks.

  7. Jeez,

    Ambulances had to get larger, coroner tables had to get larger, saddles and horses have had to get bigger, now even our F-16s have had to get bigger.

  8. I’m coming clean and admitting that I regularly watch America Idol. As a great fan of kitsch, from an ironic perspective I find the show a delight, then too I also regularly watch Project Runway and Jerseylicious so my intellectual credibility is somewhat at risk. However, while I like Steven Tyler on the show I’ve ever like Aerosmith, particularly because of the often shrillness of his voice.

    When understanding why he did this we must look to the story beneath. American Idol’s ratings this year have been disappointing. They scheduled a Sunday show right after the Giant’s game to take advantage of the ratings boost and scheduled Tyler to sing at the New England game as a promo. Perhaps, give his performance this wasn’t a good idea.

    As for the National Anthem I dislike the song and believe America the Beautiful far more appropriate. I also disdain the intermingling of the NFL and
    militaristic patriotism. However, give the coming Super Bowl, after the Giant’s victory all I can say is Big Blue will decimate those New England imposters.

  9. Thank goodness for headphones… at least my cats didn’t have to listen to the strangling!

    Seriously… Tyler would have done everyone a favor if he had only lowered the pitch a half-step or a whole-step. In the key in which he sang it, he simply hasn’t got that top note, and there’s really no way to fake it.

  10. The Blackhawks’ National Anthem is outstanding. I have not been there, but from what I’ve seen on TV and from first hand descriptions, there is a Tenor who sings and the fans go bonkers the entire time. There are a couple from back in the day that are just unbelievable, including (I believe) one from around the Gulf War.

    To me the Star Spangled Banner is supposed to be an upbeat & rowdy tune. The the poem is sung to is, in fact, an old English drinking song. Fast and Rowdy is how you truly have to appreciate it.

    Instead we get singers who want to flex their pipes and they drag it out like its a some sort of ballad.

    I love our National Anthem, but Canadians do their’s a great service…go to any hockey game (or other Canadian pastime) and every single Canuck in the crowd belts out their national anthem. Its inspiring, and they don’t even need a fresh war to get them pumped for it.

  11. Steven Tyler is a rock singer, and he sang the song like a rock singer. Kristin Chenoweth is trained as an opera singer, and she sang the song like an opera singer. Sounded to me like they both approached the song with respect. Everything else is just a matter of taste. If you don’t want to hear any variety in the performance of that song, go to the kitchen and get a beer. It will be over in a few moments.

  12. I agree that Tyler did not do a very good job, but what do you expect from a hard rocker? Chenoweth did a remarkable job in rain. She was excellent in Wicked and wasn’t she also in West Wing for awhile?

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