H.E.R. performs mesmerizing solo guitar rendition of 'America the Beautiful' at Super Bowl 2021

(Image credit: Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for TW)

H.E.R. made sure that last night's Super Bowl kicked off in style, offering up a mesmerizing rendition of Katharine Lee's patriotic anthem America the Beautiful, complete with an awe-inspiring high-gain guitar solo.

Taking to the stage armed only with an electric guitar, H.E.R. delicately steps into the song, with her commanding vocals floating on top a bed of pristine cleans, courtesy of her immaculate touch and jaw-dropping Chrome Glow signature Fender Stratocaster.

A minute later, she cranks up the volume and launches into a sizzling guitar solo, letting loose a series of sensational bends and exquisite phrases that take the track to another level.

Using whole-note bends to maximum effect, and utilizing a host of expertly constructed phrases, H.E.R. transverses the whole length of the fretboard, showing off her formidable guitar-playing prowess.

H.E.R. finishes off with a rapid-fire two-hand tapping sequence that is executed with both pinpoint precision and impeccable feel.

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Before the performance, H.E.R. spoke to Entertainment Tonight, saying: "It's a huge stage and it doesn't get bigger, you know? But I think the goal, for me, is to make [the song] my own."

The R&B star also revealed that she is "a huge fan of the different versions of America the Beautiful", but that she really wanted to "bring some different elements in there – make it H.E.R."

"I think the No. 1 thing I think about a lot is the fact 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."

It is by no means the first time that H.E.R. has wowed us with her guitar playing powers, having recently engaged in a guitar solo battle for the ages on The Tonight Show.

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Matt Owen

Matt is a Staff Writer, writing for Guitar World, Guitarist and Total Guitar. He has a Masters in the guitar, a degree in history, and has spent the last 16 years playing everything from blues and jazz to indie and pop. When he’s not combining his passion for writing and music during his day job, Matt records for a number of UK-based bands and songwriters as a session musician.