Fans Sound Off On Jewel’s Indy 500 National Anthem Performance

INDYCAR on NBC/Twitter

NASCAR fans have strong opinions about Sunday’s Indianapolis 500 national anthem performance.

Ask any artist and they will tell you that singing the national anthem is the performance with the highest amount of pressure. In a recent interview with Bobby Bones, Chris Stapleton spoke about the pressure following his now-legendary Super Bowl national anthem performance.

“It’s the anthem. It’s a hard song and it’s one that if you mess it up you are immortalized messing it up forever. And if you do well, then you did good there too,” Stapleton said. “The main goal with the anthem is — don’t mess up the words and don’t mess up the melody.”

Chris Stapleton’s Super Bowl LVII anthem performance has been hailed as one of the best ever, next to Whitney Houston. The praise is due in-part to the artists commitment to the iconic melody and staying true to the song’s original form.


Jewel Kilcher, known professionally as just Jewel, apparently had different thoughts about the anthem and decided to make it her own.

Jewel had the honor of singing “The Star-Spangled Banner” for the annual NASCAR race this year, but took liberties with the anthem’s melody that had fans harshly criticizing her performance.

“I’m sorry, but that was a horrible rendition of the national anthem!!” one Instagram follower wrote. Others called it disrespectful and “the worst I have ever heard.” Another went so far as to say that Jewel “put the national anthem through a meat grinder.”

While there was plenty of criticism, there was also praise from die-hard fans.

Jewel has performed the national anthem in the past, most notably at prior to the opening game of the 2001 World Series. For that performance the singer didn’t veer far from the original melody and earned praise for her stunning rendition.

Listen to Jewel sing “The Star-Spangled Banner” at the 2023 Indianapolis 500 below and let us know what you think.

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