Musician Sam Ryder performs the British national anthem on the grid before the F1 Grand Prix of Great Britain on July 3 in Northampton, England. (Photo: Dan Mullan - Formula 1 via Getty Images)
Ryder presented an extremely spirited version of the anthem (the same tune as “My Country, ’Tis of Thee,” thanks to a cheeky twist by Americans) at the British Grand Prix in Northampton, England.
Sam Ryder performed the national anthem of UK at Silverstone GP pic.twitter.com/WfWgo8O0Is
— isak✨ (@isakbishvilo) July 3, 2022
In May, Ryder won the runner-up spot with his song “Space Man” in the annual Eurovision song contest in which member countries of the European Broadcasting Union each submit a song to be performed on live television.
But some viewers were split over whether Ryder slayed with his innovative version of the national anthem — or obliterated it. Online publication Metro.co.uk gushed that he “wowed fans with iconic ‘God Save The Queen,’” adding: “What a legend.”
Here’s a range of the rest:
Fabulous!!! Never heard it sung with such passion!❤️❤️❤️😀
— Lynda Hayes 💜 (@Lyndahayes) July 3, 2022
Man is living his childhood dream. Let him be free to enjoy every second, god knows so many of us don't enjoy a second of our own lives!
— /ˈliːəm/ 🏳️🌈🇺🇦🇪🇺 (@doktorb) July 3, 2022
That Sam Ryder has just butchered the national anthem lifetime imprisonment needed
— MILTS (@alex_milton00) July 3, 2022
I hardly ever watch F1 and I rarely notice God Save the Queen sung on any occasion except maybe at a football match, but Sam Ryder's rendition just now was spectacular. I loved the 'Oh yeah' at the end. Respect.
— Judith Wilson (@judithwilson99) July 3, 2022
Sam Ryder having an absolute ball there singing the national anthem in a far more interesting and uplifting way than we normally get.
Normally dull and dour like it's trying to put the drivers to sleep!!#SilverstoneGP
— Gruffalo Trace ❤️🇺🇦🇺🇦🇺🇦❤️ (@MapleFiltered) July 3, 2022
Was really awfull
— steven (@Smudgejr) July 3, 2022
UK locals saying Sam Ryder sounded ‘bad’ or that his rendition of God Save The Queen was ‘cringe’.
1) have you heard GTSQ? it is objectively one of the poorest national anthems.
2) Sam is a great singer and he made GSTQ interesting.
3) Who tf cares, you talentless nobody
— Cuz 👩🚀 (@HeIsTheCuz) July 3, 2022
Sam Ryder doing a superb job with dogshit material.
Respect the hustle.
— Jonty (@Jontys_Corner) July 3, 2022
If you think Sam Ryder didn’t sing the National Anthem well enough…
1) You’ve no fucking idea about music
2) You voted to get rid of immigrants#BritishGP2022
— Rob Jeffries (@RobJeffries) July 3, 2022
Had to look up Sam Ryder doing the National Anthem because saw so many saying it was 'butchered' and 'worst thing they've ever seen'... Wtf are they even on about? 😂 it's fucking brilliant lmao, voice and style, best I've ever heard that boring shite song #F1
— Loz♡🐈 (@LemonadeLoz) July 3, 2022
Sam Ryder and actor Damien Lewis pose for a photo outside the Red Bull Racing garage prior to the F1 Grand Prix of Great Britain at Silverstone July 3 in Northampton, England. (Photo: Mark Thompson via Getty Images)
CORRECTION: A prior version of this story misidentified the tune of “God Save the Queen” as that of “The Star-Spangled Banner.”
This article originally appeared on HuffPost and has been updated.