By Maria G. Valdez, Jul 23, 2013 01:22 PM EDT
Marc Anthony has been making headlines since last week after his flawless performance of "God Bless America" at the MLB All-Star Game, which sparked controversy for many viewers who felt "insulted" that a "non-American" - as some called him - was singing a song about the U.S.
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What most people didn't know is that Anthony was born and raised in New York and although he's of Puerto Rican descent, and identifies with his Latino roots, he's been an American citizen all of his life.
But that "outrage" over the singer performing at the MLB game, has only helped Anthony promote "3.0," his new highly anticipated salsa album out today.
After nearly 10 years, Marc Anthony makes his return to salsa music with original material and a world tour of 15 countries, expected to be a success after the wide acceptance that "Vivir mi vida," the first single off this new album has had. The song rose to number one on iTunes hours after its release, and has spent 10 weeks atop Billboard's Hot Latin Songs chart.
The salsa singer made his way onto the Today Show to perform his new hit and talk to Matt Lauer and Savannah Guthrie about the "God Bless America" controversy.
He joked about his new album saying "It's like a whole new and improved me," noting it was a "little tongue-in-cheek" reference, and that someone else had already taken "2.0."
But he was more serious responding to Lauer's question about his performance at the All-Star Game on July 16, where he drew some criticism on Twitter and the Internet, with some non-fans who apparently didn't think he was "qualified" to sing "God Bless America."
"If I'm not qualified, I don't know who is," said Anthony. "I was born and raised in New York; I'm an American; I'm Puerto Rican. And for those who don't know, Puerto Rico is a territory of the US to start with."
"But if you think about it," he added, "Irving Berlin was a Russian-Jewish immigrant who wrote 'God Bless America.' Just think about that for one second."
After setting the record straight, he went on to perform "Vivir la vida" as part of the "Today Summer Concert Series," adding that he feels younger than ever and there's a lot more Marc Anthony that we haven't seen.
"I literally feel like I'm 18 all over again, and I have so much more to do!" he said.