Macy Gray’s version of national anthem at NBA All-Star game grabs internet’s attention  

Even noted that Gray’s “unique vocal style” wasn’t the perfect fit for everyone, and she earned mixed reviews.

Sunday’s 2022 NBA All-Star Game at Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse in Cleveland had a lot of highlights. From the ever-popular dunk contest to the 3-point competition, the event always trends on social media. But this year, it was the night’s opening performance that got basketball fans talking.

Grammy Award-winning singer Macy Gray, who is a native Ohioan, sang the national anthem at the top of the game. According to, Gray’s “unique vocal style” wasn’t the perfect fit for everyone, and it earned some mixed reviews. 

Macy Gray sings the national anthem before the 2022 NBA All-Star Game at Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse Sunday in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo: Tim Nwachukwu/Getty Images)

“These dusties laughing at Macy Gray are just showing their lack of cultüré. Macy has sang like that for years. That’s her style,” one Twitter user wrote. “While I do agree that it’s a different style for the National Anthem, which is usually belted out, my sis was on key and giving you soul & emotion.” 

“I know it’s BHM. But Macy Gray? Jennifer Hudson was standing right there. Who do I need to write a letter to?” another tweeted

“Macy Gray is what Fergie thought she sounded like,” one fan site opined, referencing the former Black Eyed Peas singer whose performance of the anthem at the 2018 All-Star Game has been called “one of the worst renditions of all time.” 

One element of Gray’s rendition was similar to Fergie’s in that several players appeared to hold in laughter — including LeBron James.

Still, some fans sang the singer’s praises. “Macy Gray making that mid song sound incredible,” one wrote. “Macy Gray turned the anthem into a 90’s R&B ballad and I ain’t mad at it,” added another. 

Born Natalie Renée McIntyre, Gray is known for her distinctive, raspy voice and has released 10 studio albums. She is also an actress who has appeared in seven films, including Training Day and For Colored Girls

Gray is best known for her 1999 hit single, “I Try,” which was the second single from her debut album On How Life Is. The song was nominated for Record of the Year and Song of the Year at the 2001 Grammy Awards. 

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