Country superstar Eric Church says that the Capitol riot last month convinced him to sing the national anthem at Super Bowl LV.
Church is set to team up with R&B star Jazmine Sullivan to sing “The Star-Spangled Banner” at this weekend’s Super Bowl LV, while Grammy-winning singer H.E.R. will perform “America the Beautiful.”
“I’ve avoided it forever,” Church told the Los Angeles Times.
“It’s an incredibly hard song to sing. And I’m not a vocalist — I’m a stylist. Somebody like me, you take some liberties with it, then you’ve gotten too far away from the melody and suddenly you’re a communist.”
“With what’s going on in America, it feels like an important time for a patriotic moment,” he added. “An important time for unity. The fact that I’m a Caucasian country singer and she’s an African-American R&B singer — I think the country needs that.”
“I feel like in this country, we’ve given up the common ground,” Church continued. “When I’m at a concert, I’m not thinking about how many people there are Republicans or Democrats. But that’s how you win elections — you have to create the division, to rile up a base. And because of COVID, we’ve lost the things that used to unite us: concerts, sporting events, trips to Vegas with the boys. I can tell you from the concert standpoint, the longer we go without people being able to put their arms around the person next to them and have a moment of communion, it gets more tenuous and more dangerous. And I think the reality of that is what happened at the Capitol.”
Meanwhile, the Kansas City Chiefs are set to take on Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sunday, February 7 at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida.
The Weeknd will headline the halftime show. Deaf rapper and recording artist Warren “WAWA” Snipe will perform “The Star-Spangled Banner” and “America the Beautiful” in American Sign Language.
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