Cee Lo Green Adds Religion to 'Imagine,' Fueling Outrage
Cee Lo Green Adds Religion to 'Imagine,' Fueling Outrage

Singer Deletes Apology From Twitter

C ee Lo Green rang in the new year with a fresh controversy. The "Forget You" singer fueled outrage after his performance on NBC's Times Square telecast for doing what many John Lennon fans deemed sacrilege: changing the lyrics to the late Beatle's song "Imagine" to say "all religion is true" instead of "and no religion too," as was Lennon's original verse.

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Green, who moonlights as a judge on the NBC talent contest The Voice, performed alongside Justin Bieber, Hot Chelle Ray, Pitbull, and Diego Torres on the Ryan Seacrest co-hosted Dick Clark's New Year's Rockin' Eve special. Watch:

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Lennon fans immediately pounced on Twitter following his solo rendition of the classic tune.

"Cee-lo ruining John Lennon....not everything needs a remix. Although the message is relevant," wrote a reader named D'Nai. Said @kevinkieninger: "Cee Lo. There's some songs you just don't cover. Like anything by the Beatles or John Lennon."

"The whole point of that lyric is that religion causes harm. If "all [sic] religion's true" it would be a pretty bleak place," remarked @geekysteven, summing up Lennon's anti-religion philosophy.

Green responded to his critics on the micro-blogging site with an explanation, which he deleted after apparently changing his mind.

"Yo I meant no disrespect by changing the lyric guys!" he wrote in his erased post on the matter. "I was trying to say a world were u could believe what u wanted that's all."

But Green, in a seeming change of heart, replaced that message with this one: "Happy new year everyone!!! Now playing: we just disagree [by] dave mason." Tuesday morning, the singer posted another update saying he was listening to The Beatles' 1966 song "I'm Only Sleeping."