H.E.R. Debuts Chilling New Protest Song, 'I Can't Breathe'

Illustration for article titled H.E.R. Debuts Chilling New Protest Song, 'I Can't Breathe'
Photo: Paras Griffin (Getty Images)

During an appearance on IHeartRadio’s Living Room Concert Series, H.E.R. performed a new protest song titled ‘I Can’t Breathe.” The live-streamed event, which took place on June 10, helped raise money for Meals on Wheels and the Urban League, the latter of which garnered over $75,000 in donations.


The Grammy-winning singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist noted at the beginning of her set that the song “means something very, very kind of painful and very revealing.” The song was written in response to the recent wave of protests unfolding after the tragic death of George Floyd at the hands of police in Minnesota.

“All of the names you refuse to remember, was somebody’s brother or friend, son to a mother that’s crying, saying, ‘I can’t breathe, you’re taking my life from me,’” she sings over an intoxicating guitar and organ combination.

“Music is powerful when it comes to change and when it comes to healing,” H.E.R. explains, “and that’s why I wrote this song, to make a mark in history.”

The eight-week series began on April 29 and has featured performances from SHAED, Brett Eldredge, Sam Smith and Katy Perry, to name a few.

Pronounced "Jay-nuh."