Spoilers ahead. If Grey’s Anatomy has given us anything, other than copious amounts of eye candy, it’s iconic music. The drama has put many artists on the map — and firmly into your Apple Music favourites — using songs to punctuate emotional, steamy, and sometimes straight-up bonkers scenes throughout the series’ 17-season run.
First there was The Fray, whose 2005 tune “How To Save A Life,” — which has been used throughout numerous episodes and show promos — became the soundtrack to every junior high school dance. Then came Snow Patrol, whose 2006 song “Chasing Cars” became the soundtrack to every high school dance. And now, there’s Hunnah. During the final moments of last night's episode over Meredith Grey’s now-staple monologue, the audience was treated to the Toronto-born R&B musician’s “See the Sun.” It’s an emotional and uplifting ballad from the singer, who co-wrote it over Zoom alongside musicians Breagh Isabel and Peter Groenwald with the show in mind, and whose music is influenced by stars like Lauryn Hill and Stevie Wonder as well as her Ethiopian roots. "You never know if something's going to be placed, or if it'll be cancelled last minute, so I never get excited until it actually airs," she tells Refinery29 of having her song on the popular show.
In fact, the singer only found out that her song would be in the episode an hour before it aired, at 5 p.m. L.A.-time, before hopping on FaceTime with a friend on the East Coast to watch it and popping sparkling apple cider with her roommates. Regardless, Hunnah’s big musical moment did come, during a big moment in the episode, during what has already been a monumental season, with Meredith briefly waking up after being in a COVID-related coma. (FYI, she fell back asleep, but apparently is okay.) Over the final strains of "See the Sun," the staff at Grey Sloan Memorial can be seen outside Meredith’s room, commenting on her resiliency, implying that yes, the fan favourite will eventually pull through. Paired with Hunnah’s melodic voice, it’s a straight-up hot mess for your tear ducts. "It was definitely a moment," she says of closing out the episode. "When we were writing it I remember thinking, ooh seeing the sun? This could be an ending moment."
The song, and moment, has extra sentimental meaning for the now L.A.-based singer-songwriter, who’s currently working on her second EP after the 2019 release of Show You. In a post to her Instagram shortly after the episode aired, Hunnah shared that the song is streaming under a close friend’s nickname, Rai, (the same one she watched the episode with) as an homage to her friend’s love for the show. "She's always just been so incredibly supportive and is obsessed with the show, so I had to see what I could do."
And as for where Hunnah would like to hear her music next? After having her music cut twice from episodes earlier in her career, the singer is gunning for fan favourite Insecure (CC: Issa Rae!). "They're going into their last season, so I'm trying to do a manifestation thing. I'm moving into that realm of trying, thinking please, please be on the last season of Insecure. That would be really nice."
This piece was updated with quotes from Hunnah.