Kelly Clarkson sang to her audience on The Kelly Clarkson Show Monday (May 2) that she was “never going to breathe again.” Don’t worry, though: No inhalers or CPR were needed — she was actually just belting out Toni Braxton ’90s hit “Breathe Again” for the latest installment of Kellyoke.
Accompanied by her band Y’all, Clarkson was submerged in purple light as she and her duo of breathy — no pun intended –backup singers did justice to the easygoing soul infused in Braxton’s original recording. “If I never hear ‘I love you’ now and then,” they sang, “If love ends, then I promise you, I promise you, that I shall never breathe again.”
“Breathe Again” is still one of Braxton’s best charting singles nearly 20 years later — though it doesn’t hold a candle to the 11-week reign over the Billboard Hot 100 her hit “Un-Break My Heart” had in 1996. “Breathe Again,” did, however, spend 35 weeks on the chart and peaked at No. 3. It also won Braxton her second consecutive Grammy for best R&B female vocal performance in 1995.
While promoting her 2018 album Sex & Cigarettes, the “He Wasn’t Man Enough” singer revealed to Billboard that “Breathe Again” is actually the one song in her decades-long discography that she never gets tired of singing. She even performed it for Rihanna at her 30th birthday party, as the track is apparently one of the Fenty beauty mogul’s favorites.
“It’s my go-to song that I can sing anytime,” she told Billboard. “If I need to warm up, if I need to impress you with my vocal skills, if I want to feel good as I help heal people with broken hearts, that’s the song I’m going to sing. It’s like that classic black Chanel dress that goes with everything. You just change it up with accessories.”
Allow Kelly Clarkson to take your breath away with her Kellyoke performance of “Breathe Again” below: