Jazmine Sullivan has one of the most melodically distinctive voices in the music industry –and that’s undeniable. Whether it be the Philly bred singer’s own debut album Fearless or her first extended play Heaux Tales released earlier this year, Sullivan is an artist who can deliver vocals any time, any place. And when she adds her own flare to timeless songs by icons such as Prince and Aretha Franklin, that’s the icing on the cake.
When the star of our July/August ESSENCE Festival of Culture issue sat down to chat with Issa Rae about her career she shared, “I wish I could say I had a master plan, but I really didn’t. I was just doing what felt natural, and luckily I had gotten with a record company and with people who allowed me to do that.”
We’re so glad covering these classics comes natural to the singer as well. Check out eight of the “Pick Up Your Feelings” singer’s best covers over the years below.
Nearly five years ago, Sullivan covered the late Purple One’s 2002 song from his Sing “O” The Times album.
“National Anthem,” 2021 NFL Superbowl
Accompanied by Eric Church, Sullivan stopped the world with her soulful rendition of the country’s “National Anthem” at this year’s Superbowl.
Aretha Franklin Tribute
At the 2018 Black Girls Rock! Awards and celebration, Sullivan was joined by Ledisi, Cynthia Erivo, Stephanie Mills, and Yolanda Adams for a proper Aretha Franklin tribute.
Lauryn Hill, “Killing Me Softly”
While performing live at the Gramercy Theatre in New York City back in 2014, Sullivan paid homage to Lauryn Hill by beautifully singing The Fugees’ 1997 hit single.
Live at the Filmore on Valentine’s Day, Sullivan gave fans a heartfelt cover of Kehlani’s song “Gangsta” from the Suicide Squad original movie soundtrack.
Whitney Houston’s “I Have Nothing”
If anyone can do the late legend justice, it’s Sullivan. Check out her rendition of Houston’s song from The Bodyguard: Original Soundtrack Album in 1992.
Pentatonix, “Joyful, Joyful”
In 2019, Sullivan was featured on Pentatonix’s Christmas collection The Best of Pentatonix Christmas on the group’s cover of “Joyful, Joyful”.