The joy of New Year’s Eve brings so much to look forward to. There’s so much to accomplish and dream of, with the emergence of a new year serving as an opportunity to start over. It’s an exciting night to celebrate a new start with friends, family and some fun televised performances of the most of popular songs of the ending year.
There is a particularly high sense of pressure surrounding these performances. They’re watched by millions and they are basically representing the end of the year. They serve as goodbyes to the old year and they ring in a new one. Sometimes they’re beautiful and other times they’re… Yikes.
Check out these cringe-worthy performances, ranked from most terrifying to mildly disappointing. In the end, the years have still gone on. Though they’re not easy (read: 2016), the years begin and end despite these flat notes, awkward dance moves and strange outfits. Enjoy… as much as you can.
1. Meghan Trainor performing “Lips Are Movin'” at 2015’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve
Meghan Trainor, a person who doesn’t vote and has no ‘desire’ to do so, ended the year of 2015 with this cheesy performance of her hit song “Lips Are Movin'” before making 2016 her year by dating a former Spy Kid. Trainor sounds fine in terms of vocals but this performance is like watching someone’s adult mother attempt to disguise as a hip teenager and sing her version of what she believes is a cool song for teens with painfully embarrassing choreography. She should have said “No” to this one.
2. Macklemore performing “Thrift Shop” & “Can’t Hold Us” At 2014’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve
Though we left Macklemore in 2015, it seemed that 2014 was truly his time to shine. And here he is rapping breathlessly about “cold ass honkies” while wearing a poncho and hopping around like if Peter Cottontail and G-Eazy had an irritatingly enthusiastic love child. “Can’t Hold Us” is certainly the better of the two songs but solely because of the background singers and the vocalist performing the chorus. Luckily, time has gone onward and the only memory of Macklemore is a haircut that boys who ask “where’s my hug?” keep requesting at Great Clips.
3. Jessie J performing literally one minute of John Lennon’s “Imagine” in 2015
Jessie J is a very talented vocalist with some extremely amazing and highly underrated songs, including her semi-popular single, “Domino.” Jessie J performed “Imagine,” a song that doesn’t really suit her voice and also one that anyone who has ever tried out for The Voice has used in an audition, and was not only heavily interrupted by literally everyone involved with the programming but also seemed to be dressed like Liza Minelli. The whole thing is confusing. She sounds fine but has so much potential and that is not a good way to end a year.
4. Taylor Swift performing basically the entire Fearless album at New Year’s Rockin’ Eve 2009
#TBT to the old Taylor Swift. This was a curly-haired young girl fresh on the country crossover scene. Swift hadn’t yet dated Harry Styles or written the legendary and iconic “All Too Well” and extensive vocal training was only a glimmer in her eye. If we’re being 100% honest, this just isn’t her best work. And that’s ok because I am both extremely scared of Taylor Swift/her legal team and also because we now know Taylor Swift has grown exponentially. The whole point of a new year is character development.
5. One Direction performing “Steal My Girl” At New Year’s Rockin’ Eve 2015
“Steal My Girl” is an amazing song. It’s one of the best 1D songs ever. Expectations are high for this one, as the song features a lot of different and ambitious vocal arrangements and is generally a tough one for all of them to sing at once. This was not their best. Also, hindsight is 20/20 and Zayn is clearly miserable. He doesn’t even attempt his jawdropping high note at the end. They all seem slightly dejected… Just like us, they were ready for a new year. P.S. Louis CAN NOT SING. Please don’t drag me.