"It's an honor," said the Grammy winner of performing the anthem at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas before the Chiefs and 49ers took the field
Andra Day took the crowd even higher with her pregame performance.
The Grammy winner, 39, sang the hymn “Lift Every Voice and Sing” ahead of Super Bowl LVII at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas.
Before the Chiefs and the 49ers took the field, Day belted out the uplifting gospel song, which is commonly known as the Black national anthem and was originally written as a poem by NAACP leader James Weldon Johnson in 1900.
The R&B songstress was joined by a handful of back-up singers, and together their harmonies soared as they performed the classic song. While she seamlessly reaching high notes and her supportive vocalists performed simple yet affective choreography, they brought an inspirational energy ahead of the big game.
See PEOPLE's full coverage of the Super Bowl LVII as it broadcasts live on CBS from the Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas.
Day looked stunning in a sleek, beige suit featuring an oversized blazer, matching trousers and suede, heeled booties. She wore her red braids pulled back half-up-half-down.
The host referenced the song as “the Black National Anthem” and asked the “Rise Up” singer how it felt to prepare “such an important piece of our culture with the world."
“More than anything, it’s an honor. It’s exciting,” Day replied. “And it feels intentional. I like to do things with intention and with purpose.”
She added that she had recently spoken to her mother about the upcoming performance and that the pair agreed that the “song is a hymn.”
“It’s a hymn of triumph, and that’s what I want people to encounter when I sing this song. I want them to know that we have victory and we have peace already… It feels like there’s an honor,” Day continued.
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Day also told the Associated Press that performing this song is “inspiring” her. “I’m looking forward to the day that the Black national anthem, or anthems that represent other people, or a universal anthem that represents everyone,” said Day. “Where everyone feels represented and loved is not such a conversation but it is the future’s norm.”
Day is one of four music performers during the 2024 Super Bowl. In addition to her performance, Malone, 28, performed his rendition of “America the Beautiful” during the pre-game telecast while McEntire, 68, opened the match-up by performing the national anthem.
Usher will be the headliner of the Apple Music Super Bowl LVII Halftime Show.
The Kansas City Chiefs and the San Francisco 49ers face off in Super Bowl LVIII, airing on CBS on Feb. 11.
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