Ricky Martin's 4th of July performance of 'Livin' la Vida Loca' goes a little bit loco

Wendy Geller
Writer, Yahoo Entertainment

Ricky Martin is 46 years old, has retained his good looks and physique admirably, and dusted off a crowd-pleasing hit he made famous nearly two decades ago for NBC’s 42nd annual Macy’s 4th of July Fireworks Spectacular, which aired Wednesday. What could possibly go wrong?

Well, things did go a bit loco. Martin’s 1999 hit “Livin’ La Vida Loca” — which he performed as part of a medley — fell oddly flat. While the singer was filled with energy and gamely shook his bon-bon amid a troupe of scantily clad dancers from all around the globe, his voice put a concrete anchor on the frothy performance.

Martin seemed to be delivering his vocals in a different register than the original recording, and the tune sounded, well, just simply kind of off. It threw viewers into a tizzy — and also got social media buzzing, once people had taken their fingers out of their ears.

Ouch. Twitter being its usual melting pot of opinions, however, meant that there were a few brave souls out there who stood up for poor Martin, saying he wasn’t half-bad.

And, of course, there were several diehard fans who were so dazzled by Martin’s ageless good looks and smooth moves that they didn’t even bother to notice how he sounded.

At any rate, Martin offered up a serious sentiment in a pretaped segment for the special. After mentioning that he planned to spend the Fourth in the pool relaxing with family, he dedicated Independence Day 2018 to “fellow Puerto Ricans, who are, unfortunately after the hurricane … still struggling.

“We’re talking about 4 million U.S. citizens. Some of them have no power, and it’s been almost 300 days since the devastation. I’ll have them in my prayers.”

Martin was referring to last year’s Hurricane Maria, a disaster for which he has spearheaded philanthropic relief efforts.

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