There's no doubt about it: Christina Aguilera is the reigning Queen of Vocal Runs. When she's really feeling a song, the 34-year-old diva has been known to stretch out a syllable for hours and hours on end, singing upwards of 11,397 different notes in rapid succession. (I'm kidding. Her longest riff only lasted, like, 45 minutes or something.) Christina Aguilera’s best vocal runs are thrilling. They make you want to throw your hands up in the air and scream "YEEESSS!!!" at the top of your lungs, like you're riding her voice like a roller coaster. When she’s on her "A" game, nobody does vocal acrobatics better than Legend X. Nobody.
Of course, throughout her career, Aguilera has been criticized for "oversinging" (which I openly admit to calling her out on a number of times in the past), but I actually think there's a time and a place for it. Sure, oversinging can be a little ridiculous. Sure, oversinging can be a little over-the-top. Sure, oversinging can be a little melodramatic — but it can also be a lot of fun! Sometimes, there's nothing cooler than watching an artist pull out their bag of vocal tricks.
Accordingly, here are 11 Christina Aguilera vocal runs that will make your jaw drop:
"Ain't No Other Man" At The 2006 MTV Movie Awards
Sing it, Xtina!
"Contigo En La Distancia" During The My Reflection Concert
"Lady Marmalade" At The 2002 Grammy Awards
This is, without a doubt, the best part of the song. If you claim to have never lip-synced to it in a mirror, you're lying.
"What A Girl Wants" During The Stripped Tour
I love it.
Aretha Franklin Tribute At The 2011 Grammy Awards
The first bit is repeated in the above clip three times for emphasis (naturally). There are more vocal runs starting at the 0:20 mark.
This Beautiful, Beautiful Disaster
Play the whole video from start to finish... if you dare! (Honestly, I don't know if a person's brain can handle listening to all those vocal runs in one sitting.)
"Candyman" During The Back To Basics Tour
"Candyman" is one of my favorite Aguilera songs of all time. Don't judge me.
"Dirrty" At The 2003 MTV Video Music Awards
There's a good riff at the 4:29 mark, too.
"Riot" At The 2015 Academy Of Country Music Awards
She's still got it!
"Climb Every Mountain" During The My Reflection Concert
Everything from the 1:22 mark on is required viewing/listening if you're into this sort of thing (and if you've come this far, you probably are).
"Beautiful" At CNN Heroes
Yeah, you need to watch this entire performance. It's bonkers (in a good way).