“I Can’t Breathe,” inspired by the death of 46-year-old George Floyd, whose death sparked riots across the United States last year, won “Song of the Year” at the 63rd Grammy Awards.
Singer-songwriter H.E.R. won Song of the Year at the Grammys on Sunday evening for her song titled “I Can’t Breathe,” inspired by Floyd’s death. While pinned to the ground by police in Minneapolis, Minnesota last year, Floyd said “I can’t breathe” multiple times throughout the arrest.
The lyrics of the song include the verses:
Trying times all the time
Destruction of minds, bodies, and human rights
Stripped of bloodlines, whipped and confined
This is the American pride
It’s justifying a genocide
Romanticizing the theft and bloodshed
That made America the land of the free
To take a black life, land of the free
To bring a gun to a peaceful fight for civil rights
You are desensitized to pulling triggers on innocent lives
Because that’s how we got here in the first place
These wounds sink deeper than the bullet
Your entitled hands could ever reach
Generations and generations of pain, fear, and anxiety
Equality is walking without intuition
Saying the protector and the killer is wearing the same uniform
The revolution is not televised
Media perception is forced down the throats of closed minds
So it’s lies in the headlines
And generations of supremacy resulting in your ignorant, privileged eyes
In an interview ahead of the Grammys, H.E.R. told Entertainment Tonight that she considers the song “the soundtrack to a movement” in reference to the Black Lives Matter protests and riots that occurred last year following footage of Floyd’s death going viral online.
“I mean, it’s been the soundtrack to a movement, you know, one of many songs and I’m just happy to be a part of history now,” she added about the track, which is up for a GRAMMY for Best Song.
Jury selection for Derek Chauvin, one of four former Minneapolis police officers charged in the May 25, 2020 death of George Floyd, opened Tuesday, and, as the Associated Press reports, one juror “was anxious, worried about high emotion surrounding the case. One worried his family might be targeted. The person who worried about the divisiveness of the case was dismissed, as was the potential juror who feared his family could be targeted.”
The Associated Press contributed to this article.