Marsha Ambrosius (Photo by Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP)

Shortly after the celebration of Nipsey Hussle’s life began on Thursday, Marsha Ambrosius was on stage. She belted out "Fly Like A Bird," the song closed Mariah Carey’s comeback album, "The Emancipation of Mimi," in 2005.

For some, it was surprising that it seemed like Marsha, who has written and performed many a hits, was singing a cover version of a song by a living and able artist. But there was some method to this madness.

On Nipsey’s "Victory Lap album," Marsha appears on "Real Big." It's one of the standout tracks from the 2018 album. It features a sample from "Fly Like A Bird"'s instrumentation, but Marsha chose to pay tribute to her collaborator by singing the song.

The ballad is about ascending and asking a higher power to carry you up. It’s fitting for a memorial. Towards the end of the performance, Nipsey’s chorus vocals boomed through and it was like they were performing the song together.