When the 2019 Grammy nominations were announced last month, one of the biggest takeaways was that H.E.R. is here to stay. Only a couple years into her career, the breakout R&B star racked up a whopping five nominations, including Best New Artist and the prestigious Album of the Year for her self-titled debut. Now, with the awards show only a month away, H.E.R. is making the celebratory rounds, stopping by The Late Late Show on Tuesday night (January 8) for a performance that proves why all those nods are so very deserved.
Taking the stage with her trusty band, H.E.R. launched into “Carried Away,” a hypnotic standout from her 2018 EP I Used to Know Her: Part 2. She was flanked by two backing singers who supplied plenty of energy as the latter half of the performance shifted into a funked-out jam session. They also hyped H.E.R. up as she effortlessly bounced between instruments — the 21-year-old played no less than three of them, showing off her dexterity on the acoustic guitar, bass, and keyboard.
Prior to the performance, H.E.R. did a short interview with host James Corden, telling him all about the meaning behind her stage name.
“It stands for Having Everything Revealed,” she said. “It represented this time of becoming a young woman and going through heartbreak, and all these things that happen… I call it the evolution of woman.”
The name is also, she said, a way to ensure that the focus of her career is on her music and not her image.
“The best way for me to release my music was to be honest, and in order for me to do that, I felt like, let me not put my face on my music. Let me not put a name on my music, and just give my music the way that it is; its pure message,” she explained. “That’s all you can see: H.E.R.”