The song that H.E.R. sings is called “Freedom! ’90,” although it is mostly referred to by many as “Freedom.” It was originally written and performed by George Michael, the former lead singer of Wham!, who went on to have a very lucrative solo career in the late 1980s and early 1990s. “Freedom! ’90” comes from Michael’s album “Listen Without Prejudice Vol. 1,” and was a huge hit for the singer/songwriter. Those who grew up in the ’80s and ’90s will probably remember the song’s music video, which featured famous supermodels lip-syncing the song in place of Michael himself, who was barely visible in the video, according to Songfacts.
Although H.E.R.’s version of the tune is a fun, upbeat dance number, the inspiration for “Freedom! ’90” was actually born out of resentment. For Michael, the song was an expression of his feelings about leaving Wham! to explore his own artistic ambitions. The lyrics are a statement about how his career with the band made Michael feel like he was pretending to be something he wasn’t, and that it was time for him to move on. While the George Michael original is truly a classic, there’s no denying that H.E.R.’s rendition for Old Navy definitely slaps.