As the first mass-produced Nike running shoe (it started in 1971, folks), the Nike Cortez has been a staple in every sneaker-lovers life since most of us were in diapers. I remember (read: saw a picture of and remember the picture) wearing my mother's far too big white and blues around the house when I was barely old enough to feed myself in my high chair. So, in honor of this upcoming July 4th holiday I wanted to pay homage to a true classic in a way that is both fitting and patriotic. What do you get when you combine the National Anthem, one of the nation's most cherished voices, and the iconic Cortez? January 27, 1991.


On January 27, 1991 Whitney Houston took to the field at Super Bowl XXV and delivered one of the greatest renditions of the "Star Spangled Banner" of all time. And she was rocking the Cortez. Tensions were high as the Gulf War began to take root and Whitney's stirring performance was just what the nation needed to boost its patriotic spirit. So much so, that her version of our national song was released as a single the very next month.

Take a look below at Whitney's performance in full and, if you're feeling the need to Shop The Sneaks, head to Champs to nab your red and whites.