The Star-Spangled Banner: a “nasty piece of work” or the greatest song America has?

Marvin Gaye singing the Star-Spangled Banner: drawn and copyrighted by PJ Mcquade, who you can find here http://pjmcquade.com/

Marvin Gaye singing the Star-Spangled Banner: drawn and copyrighted by PJ Mcquade, who you can find at pjmcquade.com

You decide! Or, er, read this article I wrote for The Guardian about the song’s 200th anniversary, then make your mind up.

The article features comment from a descendant of the anthem’s author; a pop star who was banned from US radio for messing with the song; and many other equally fascinating people. Yes, I did try calling Bruce Springsteen. No, he wasn’t available!

It also mentions Marvin Gaye’s bizarrely sexy version of the anthem, which is good as it means I have an excuse to use the above portrait of Gaye to illustrate this post.

The portrait’s stolen from this article about Gaye’s anthem, which appeared in Grantland last year. It’s a great read and well worth your time… after my Guardian article, of course!

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