Ever Notice Why Rockstars Don’t Play Superbowl Halftime Anymore
via Queen Official / Youtube
In recent years, Super Bowl halftime shows have taken a notable turn away from featuring rockstars, marking a significant shift from the early 2000s when rock acts dominated the stage. But why have these iconic figures seemingly disappeared from one of the biggest stages in entertainment?
To understand this change, let’s rewind to the early 2000s when rock music reigned supreme at Super Bowl halftime shows.
Acts like Aerosmith, U2, and the Rolling Stones electrified audiences with their energetic performances. However, as the years passed, the lineup began to shift towards R&B, pop, and hip-hop artists, leaving rockstars on the sidelines.
Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes, now a Super Bowl veteran, was still in high school when the Who rocked the stage in 2010. Since then, there hasn’t been a top-billed rock act headlining the halftime show. This begs the question: what led to this change?
According to industry insiders, the decision to move away from rock acts may stem from various factors, including international appeal and artistic preferences. The Super Bowl isn’t just an American phenomenon; it attracts millions of viewers worldwide. As such, organizers may opt for artists with broader global recognition.
“I can’t dance, I can’t jump around. I’m not an acrobat, I’m not a variety show, you know?” James Hetfield of Metallica once remarked. “We are artists. We’re a band. We love playing songs. We’re not gonna fly through the air on a sparkly star with a unicorn.”
This sentiment is echoed by other rockstars who feel that the halftime show’s spectacle-oriented nature may not align with their artistic vision.
Dee Snider, known for his work with Twisted Sister, expressed frustration over the perceived lack of representation for heavy music.
“Once again the great heavy music that rocks the stadiums week after week, game after game is completely ignored,” Snider lamented. “I guess we don’t shake our ass enough!”
The absence of country music acts in recent halftime shows further highlights the organizers’ emphasis on genres perceived to have greater international appeal. Despite country’s popularity in the United States, it has been more than two decades since a country artist headlined the halftime show.
Who selects the performers for the Super Bowl halftime show?
While the decision-making process for selecting halftime performers remains somewhat opaque, it typically involves a panel of experts convened by the NFL. Local representatives from the host city also play a role in the final decision, which can sometimes lead to controversies, as seen in the case of Super Bowl 50.
“I do feel compelled to point out to you that the halftime show should have included some of the local iconic bands that the world would have loved to see perform,” remarked Carlos Santana following the announcement of the lineup for Super Bowl 50. “Bands like Metallica, Steve Miller, Journey and yours truly. We would have rocked the halftime show and done the San Francisco Bay Area proud.”
In conclusion, while rock may no longer dominate Super Bowl halftime shows, the debate over its absence continues. As the music industry evolves and tastes change, the future of rock in this iconic event remains uncertain. Whether rockstars will reclaim their place on the Super Bowl stage or whether other genres will continue to reign supreme, only time will tell.