After American Idol

Iam Tongi apologizes for national anthem gaffe

Iam Tongi performs the national anthem prior to the MLB Home Run Derby Monday night.

Iam Tongi performs the national anthem prior to the MLB Home Run Derby Monday night.


American Idol Iam Tongi is apologizing for his national anthem performance prior to the Major League Home Run Derby Monday night.

No, he didn’t forget the lyrics.

No, he didn’t embellish the anthem to the point where it was barely recognizable.

But he did forget to remove his hat for the performance.

Tuesday, he posted an apology on all his social media and on the video uploaded to his YouTube page.

“First time singing the National Anthem and it was nerve wrecking that the nerves took over and I forgot to take my cap off,” Iam wrote on Instagram. “So sorry guys.”

And on Twitter, he added: “Tens of thousands of people. I walk out and my uncle reminds me to remove my hat before I start singing. I remember. A few seconds later, the nerves took in and didn’t remember until it was all done. I will try to do better next time.”

Fans seemed more inclined to praise his straight-forward, sincere approach to the Star Spangled Banner than to beat him up over the faux pas.

At least that seemed to be the near unanimous sentiment on Twitter.

Here’s a sampling:

Brook Alyson: “Your voice is so angelic that I never even thought twice about the hat. I doubt anyone will shame you for it. Shame on them if they do. We know your heart 😉🩵.”

Scott Jaeggi: “Honest mistake. Great job on singing the National Anthem.”

Mary Cons: “Omg I got chills listening to this! So much passion and feeling. Don’t worry about it. We see jerks not taking it off because they are being disrespectful, you were nervous. Good job!!”

MW: “TBH. I was so immersed in your voice and your performance, I didn’t even notice. Nicely done!”

Crystal Rose: “You owning up to your mistake shows your true character. We all make mistakes. You nailed the singing!!! Keep it up.”

NM Desert Gardener: “Your fans know that you have a kind heart and soul. It wasn’t an intentional act. It was all nerves. We still love ya…this is coming from a military spouse. 😎🤗🤗”

Dawn M. Andrews: “You addressed it.
You owned it.
You sang the Hell out of the anthem! ❤️❤️”

Of course, the sentiment wasn’t unanimous.

Writes Boog’s ShaSha: “You sang it great. However, the hat was ridiculous. Why didn’t you just take the dang thing off when your uncle said something?!? I’ve read everyone saying NoBigDeal! But it is. It’s called RESPECT. Have some.”

But DD67 probably summed it up best: “Awesome job Iam‼️. No worries there will be many many next times!!!”

See also …
Iam enjoys triumphant homecoming in Hawaii
Iam announces lots of July tour dates


  1. DEB FUSCO July 15, 2023 at 5:25 am -  Reply


  2. Pam July 18, 2023 at 4:18 pm -  Reply

    I love this kid. He is so talented and humble.

Leave a reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

© Mark Franklin, Idol Chatter/Voice Views, 2008-2020. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author is strictly prohibited.