Watch: ‘Smash’s’ Jennifer Hudson belts new song ‘I Can’t Let Go’

While there will never be another Whitney Houston, Jennifer Hudson has proven to be the closest heir apparent among the current crop of female divas. She has a voice that just won”t quit and an emotional fervor that she brings to each song without ever appearing overwrought.

Watch the below clip from “Smash” as her character, Veronica “Ronnie” Moore sings “I Can”t Let Go,” a power ballad written by “Smash”s” composers/executive producers Marc Shaiman and Scott Whittman. Hudson, rooted in one spot, is riveting.  It feels like a sure bet for an Emmy nod

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As the lyrics explain, Hudson/Moore wants to learn to love again, but she can”t let go of the past. She performs the song on her own televised concert special. Are you with me so far? Hudson plays a character on a television show and within that television show her character gets her own television special.

To keep it meta, Columbia Records will release a cast album for “Bombshell,” the pretend Broadway play that the members of “Smash” are working on. The 22-song album will come out Feb. 12.

The song, which Entertainment Weekly premiered today, will air in Episode 4 of the show”s second season, which begins Feb. 5.

What do you think of “I Can’t Let Go?”