Aerosmith rocker/American Idol judge/walking anti-whiskey PSA Steven Tyler sung the national anthem at the AFC championship in New England earlier today. And by "sung," I mean "struggled through." And by "struggled through," I mean, "barked, rasped, screeched, yipped, hissed, shook, rattled, and rolled his way through, until his voice no longer resembled that of a human being, instead sounding more like one of those European See'n'Says."
Although the Intertwitterblogosphere has been abuzz with harsh criticisms of Tyler's performance, in all honesty it's actually pretty badass. "The Star-Spangled Banner" is a notoriously tough song, and Tyler's rendition was pretty much what you'd expect from a guy who subsisted solely on Old Crow, menthols, and groupie vagina throughout the entire Carter administration. It's ragged and hard-edged and imperfect and extremely rock'n'roll (with the exception of the bedazzled Patriots sweatshirt Tyler wore during the broadcast, which looked less aging-rock-star-glam and more like something Susie Greene from Curb would wear).
So go on with your bad self, Steven Tyler! You're like that friend's recently divorced dad who wears leather pants and rides a Vespa and brags to his kid's friends about how much pussy he gets, who everyone would be totally skeeved-out by if he wasn't so impossibly charming. That guy can do and say pretty much whatever he wants; just as you, Steven Tyler, can bring Gillette Stadium to its feet by yowling our national anthem like a methed-out alleycat in heat.
Because you, Steven Tyler, are an American treasure, whose indefatigable spirit and booze-soaked caterwauling serve as an inspiration to us all; and besides, at least you didn't forget the words like Christina Aguilera did last year. I'm sorry, but you learn that shit when you're four years old, Xtina. The fact that you forget that and not the lyrics to "Tilt Ya Head Back" is inexcusable.