"I'm just going to try to tell myself to have a really good time," she said of singing "America the Beautiful" before the big game on Sunday

By Benjamin VanHoose
February 04, 2021 10:34 AM

H.E.R. is gearing up for a massive audience.

The 23-year-old Grammy winner is set to perform "America the Beautiful" at Super Bowl LV on Sunday, an opportunity she feels "blessed" for, even if she's admittedly nervous.

"Honestly, I am so excited to just be performing at the Super Bowl. It's a huge stage and it doesn't get any bigger, you know?" she told Entertainment Tonight in a recent interview. "But I think the goal, for me, is to make [the song] my own. I'm a huge fan of the different versions of 'America the Beautiful,' but I really want to bring some different elements in there ... make it H.E.R."

"I'm just going to try to tell myself to have a really good time. But I'm going to be in there, getting my warm-ups in, and just praying that everything goes well," she added.

Elsewhere in the pre-game lineup will be Eric Church and Jazmine Sullivan, who will perform the national anthem and The Weeknd will be the halftime show headliner.

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H.E.R., whose real name is Gabi Wilson, expressed what it means to be taking the microphone at the major event as a Black woman. "I think the No. 1 thing I think about a lot is the fact that I'm a young Black girl from the Bay area that never imagined that I would be on a stage like that. I think it's a message to other young Black women that you can do it too," she said. "There's nothing that you can't do. Reach for the stars."

Last month, Eric Church — who vowed never to perform the national anthem — revealed the reason why he agreed to perform "The Star-Spangled Banner" at the Super Bowl with Sullivan in an interview with Apple Music Country's Today's Country Radio.

"I've said this forever: 'I will never ever sing the national anthem...' it's so hard. Except the Super Bowl," he said. "I'm not Chris Stapleton. I fully assumed they were never going to ask me."

"My first response was 'Mm-mm. I'm a stylist, not a vocalist,'" Church explained.

But then ... he heard Sullivan's voice and he was sold.

"And then I heard her and I'm not missing a chance to sing with her. And that was it," the singer said. "Once I heard her voice, I said, 'Okay, I'm in.'"

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Kansas City Chiefs are facing off at Super Bowl LV on Sunday in Tampa, Florida. The game will air on CBS at 6:30 p.m. EST.