New Orleans bandleader Claude Bryant will certainly think twice the next time someone asks to take the mic during one of his sets.
That’s because he was recently approached by Christina Aguilera to do that very thing, and told her “no.”
Bryant and his band, Claude Bryant and the All Stars, were playing their regular Thursday night gig on Nov. 8 at Cafe Negril, a popular Frenchmen Street bar were Aguilera and her crew were enjoying a night off of their Liberation Tour.
Inspired by the music, Aguilera, 37, decided to approach Bryant to sing a tune. “I was just like, ‘Let me just get up on stage and jam with this guy, maybe I’ll sing a song,’ ” Aguilera recalled to a sold-out crowd the next night during her concert at the Saenger Performing Arts Center, according to video captured by The Advocate‘s Marchaund Jones. “‘It’ll be fun.’ “
Things didn’t go as Aguilera planned, though. “He would not give me the mic!” she joked. “He was a little older… he was not feeling it! He was not going to give up his mic!”
Trying to compromise, Bryant suggested that Aguilera dance for him instead. “I was like, ‘No, I just want to sing a song with you!’ ” Aguilera said. “I was like, ‘Okay, I’ll just save it for tomorrow then. It’s alright. It’s all good.’ He was like, ‘Don’t hurt yourself.’ I was like, ‘Okay, you’re not feeling me, it’s okay. I’m just going to be on my little merry way. Find somewhere else to go!’ ”
The supremely awkward moment between Aguilera and Bryant was also captured on video by an onlooker, all seeming to play out exactly as Aguilera described.
So what was Bryant thinking?
“I didn’t recognize her,” he told WGNO-TV. “She had a cap over her head and over her eyes. She was in a jersey. She didn’t introduce herself to me, but she had very soft hands and that got my attention. I asked her if she wanted to dance and she said that she wanted to sing. I started playing the beginning riff of the song, ‘No, No, No,’ by Bob Marley, but then her bodyguard picked her up off the stage, and she left.”
“I’m sorry Christina, I just didn’t recognize you!” he added, addressing Aguilera directly. “Come back Christina. You can sing anything you want with us!”
RELATED: Go Inside Christina Aguilera’s Liberation Tour
Aguilera is currently in St. Petersburg, Florida, where she’s scheduled to play the Mahaffey Theater Tuesday night — the final announced show on her Liberation tour (though two shows, which Aguilera had to postpone due to illness, have yet to be rescheduled).
Fans can expect songs from the Grammy winner’s newest album Liberation, including “Fall in Line,” “Maria” and “Accelerate.” There are also old favorites like “Fighter,” “Beautiful,” “Ain’t No Other Man,” “Genie in a Bottle,” “Can’t Hold Us Down,” “What a Girl Wants” and “Come on Over (All I Want Is You).”