Eric Church and Jazmine Sullivan offered a unique take on “The Star-Spangled Banner” ahead of the 2021 Super Bowl between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Kansas City Chiefs. The country music singer, 43, and the R&B chart topper, 33, performed together for the first duet since Aretha Franklin and Aaron Neville teamed up for Super Bowl 40. Jazmine’s vocal prowess was on full display, as Eric harmonized and played the guitar. She stunned in a cream suit and a silver bedazzled head piece while Eric wore a purple jacket with denim jeans and dark sunglasses.
— NFL (@NFL) February 7, 2021
Fans couldn’t get enough of the performance. “excited for the football game tonight at the Jazmine Sullivan concert,” one Twitter user joked, while another wrote, “I love Jazmine Sullivan’s voice. I could just listen to it all night long.” Jazmine and Eric had actually never met prior to their February 7 performance. He previously opened up on Apple Music Country’s Today’s Country Radio about the duet. “I’ve not met her yet. She may be the best singer. I was floored,” Eric began. “I’m a fan. I’ve went in and listened to everything she did. And I had heard her name, but full disclosure, I had not listened.”
Okay!!! Didn’t know how this combo would be for national anthem and it is AWESOME. I’m hyped. #SuperBowl
— Francesca (@BarstoolFran) February 7, 2021
Eric also revealed that he had previously vowed to “never” sing the national anthem because it was “so hard”. “Except the Super Bowl,” he said during the interview. “[But] I fully assumed they were never going to ask me. My first response was ‘Mm-mm. I’m a stylist, not a vocalist … And then I heard her [Jazmine] and I’m not missing a chance to sing with her. And that was it. Once I heard her voice, I said, ‘Okay, I’m in.'”
Due to COVID-19 measures, the Raymond James Stadium — which has been decked out for the Super Bowl — will not be at full capacity. Instead, the NFL opted to invite 7,500 health care workers from the Tampa area and across the United States as a tribute to their tireless efforts during the pandemic. An additional 14,500 tickets were sold to fans who were picked by a lottery.