Marvin Gaye's legendary performance of the national anthem that wowed the world

Edduin Carvajal
Sep 20, 2018
04:40 A.M.

Even though it has been more than 35 years since Marvin Gaye sang the “Star-Spangled Banner,” his performance is still remembered as one of the most original ones.


Gaye, considered one of the most influential musicians in the 60s and 70s, was chosen to sing the national anthem for the 33rd NBA All-Star Game at The Forum in Inglewood, California.

As The Undefeated reported, the first choice to perform that song had been Lionel Richie. However, the league’s officer wasn’t familiar with the singer’s music, so they chose Gaye to do it.

At that point in his life, Gaye had been struggling with severe drug addiction, especially to cocaine. Apart from that, he had dealt with failed relationships and other financial issues.

Source: YouTube/Mark Dury

Source: YouTube/Mark Dury


National Public Radio added that the singer was running “perilously late.” Thankfully, he got to the Forum on time and walked to the center court in a deep blue suit and dark sunglasses, which were part of an NBA gift package.

Source: YouTube/Mark Dury

Source: YouTube/Mark Dury


The only problem with them was that they had “L.A. All-Star” imprinted backward on the lenses, and Gaye either didn’t know or didn’t care about it as he wore them throughout the entire presentation.

Source: YouTube/Mark Dury

Source: YouTube/Mark Dury


Rolling Stone revealed that the rehearsals were extremely shaky, so organizers believed that Gaye would “blow it” in live television. Thankfully, he delivered one of the most popular renditions of the song ever recorded.

Source: Getty Images

Source: Getty Images


He sang a spine-tingling rendition of the “Star-Spangled Benner” with nothing but his voice and a drum machine that gave the normally straightforward song a different rhythm that the more than 17,000 members of the crowd praised and loved.

Only one year later – April 1. 1984 – Gaye was found dead after his father killed him. The singer was in his bedroom when Marvin Gay Sr. shot him in the heart and his left shoulder.

As The Sun reported, many rumors addressed why Gay Sr. committed the crime. The most known theory suggests that both men were involved in a fight, and shooting the singer was the way to end the dispute.

Please fill in your e-mail so we can share with you our top stories!
By subscribing, you agree to our Privacy Policy
Related posts

George Strait 'Eloped' with His 'Really Hot' Wife — 51 Years Later They 'Still Like Each Other'

December 05, 2022

Who Is Young Thug? Everything We Know about the Life of the Influential Rapper

May 10, 2022

Josh Groban’s Relationships with 5 Actresses & a Singer before He Fell for a TV Star - Inside His Private Life

April 02, 2022

Billy Joel Is Happily Married to 4th Wife Who Is 33 Years His Junior & the Mom of His Youngest Kids

March 08, 2022

Ozzie & Harriet Nelson's Family Faced 'Huge Discrepancy' between Their Real Life & On-Screen Portrayal

April 19, 2022

Reba McEntire & Boyfriend Were Friends for 29 Years — She Felt Like a 'Giddy Teenager' When They Began Dating

February 26, 2022

Kris Kristofferson Said Wife of 38 Years Is His 'Real Blessing' and Made His Life 'Perfect' with Their 5 Kids

February 17, 2022

Tina Turner Fell Instantly in Love with Much Younger Man Years after Hiding with 'No Money, No House' from Ex

May 23, 2022

Inside Adele's Post-divorce Relationship with Ex-husband despite Sparking New Engagement Rumors

February 10, 2022

Kelly Clarkson's Dad Wanted Kids at His Side When on His Deathbed – Kelly 'Did Not Show up,’ Claims Brother

March 17, 2022

Charlotte Rae's Husband Cheated on Her with Other Men – He Could Not Marry His Love after Their Divorce

March 30, 2022

Bruno Mars Had to Live In a Zoo After Parents’ Divorce – He Slept in 1 Bed With His Dad & Brother

April 05, 2022

Samuel L Jackson & Wife Are Married for 41 Years & 'Still Love Each Other' Though They Took 10 Years to Wed

March 10, 2022

Natalie Cole Gifted 6 Years of Life via Organ Donation from Late Fan's Family: 'It Was a Pretty Big Miracle'

April 29, 2022