Watch: Kelly Clarkson and Sheila E Perform “that’s right” from Clarkson’s New Album

Kelly Clarkson recently tapped legendary percussionist Sheila E for the song “that’s right,” featured on her new album Chemistry, and subsequently brought Sheila to The Kelly Clarkson Show for a live performance of the song during Kellyoke.

Videos by American Songwriter

The song is a jazzy anthem for leaving a bad situation or relationship, as Clarkson has explored this theme recently following her divorce last year. She’s empowering herself through the song with lines like I miss myself, it’s been a while since I made time for me / Back on the shelf, but it’s right where I want to be and I was blue too long inside / Truth is that I’m tired of trying / Diving straight into goodbye / Found myself in ocean eyes.

[RELATED: Kelly Clarkson Brings Positive Energy with Kellyoke Cover of “Unwritten” by Natasha Bedingfield]

Sheila E’s expert percussion work gives the song a solid backbone to build on, and she switched between conga drums, snare drums, and a shekere to add depth. The album itself follows “the arc of an entire relationship,” as Clarkson described. It was meant to give listeners the experience of every emotion from the beginning to the end of a relationship, making it relatable and devastating in turn.

Clarkson began writing the album in 2019, eventually announcing her divorce in 2020. The album took a shift from the original vision, then, with a stronger root in endings and new beginnings. She described Chemistry as “very therapeutic” and her “most personal [album] yet.”

There was another special guest on the Kellyoke stage recently as well; special education paraprofessional Lacey Schaffer-Thomas from Fort Smith, Arkansas joined Clarkson for a rendition of Stevie Wonder’s “Superstition” after Schaffer-Thomas went viral for her Joplin-esque vocals and incredible stage presence. According to Shaffer-Thomas’ daughter, Phoebe, who commented on the video posted by The Kelly Clarkson Show, her mother has been singing for 45 years and is getting back into music because of the overwhelmingly positive response to her performance.

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