For many Super Bowls in the past, the NFL has been known to choose only seasoned artists who have already proven themselves not just in the music industry’s competitive market but in the more impactful cultural subconscious of their loyal fans to headline the much anticipated Super Bowl half-time show.
Many thanks to King of Pop Michael Jackson who electrified millions of Super Bowl viewers in 1993, setting the bar high for upcoming Super Bowl half-time show performers, the half-time show itself has already evolved to become an integral part of the Super Bowl, drawing an even larger number of spectators including those who are clueless about football.
This year, however, Super Bowl offered the stage to Bruno Mars, the young guy who promised the world he “would catch a grenade for ‘ya” perhaps “because you’re beautiful just the way you are”.
Mars, the 28 year old singer, producer, song-writer and Grammy award winner responsible for Billboard charting albums “Doo-Wops and Hooligans” and “Unorthodox Jukebox”, is set to perform at the Super Bowl halftime show this Sunday.
Armed with years of extensive experience in singing, songwriting and producing musical material not just for himself but for other notable artists as well, impressive record sales – 10 million albums reportedly sold worldwide – and a host of recognitions from various organizations and award giving bodies in the music industry, Bruno Mars is going to take over the stage that had once been graced by such iconic figures as Paul McCartney, U2, The Who, Bruce Springsteen, Prince, Madonna and Michael Jackson.
So you wonder, what gives Bruno Mars the edge to perform on the Super Bowl stage over so many other artists who seem to have accomplished more as musicians?
There are many speculations on how the young artist got one of the most coveted gigs in the entertainment industry ranging from being a favorite entertainer in sports events to being a star in his own right.
Here’s what I think.
In a technology driven world such as what we have right now with millions of opinion generated from Twitter and Facebook dictating the trend, Bruno Mars’ performance at the Super Bowl is guaranteed to clog the bandwidth just a few seconds after he hits the stage.
Mars’ youth and energy will lend the NFL a fresher and younger image that would appeal to a younger generation of fans and consumers who are both existing and potential followers of anything that the NFL merchandises and all the other products and brands that support it.
Mars possesses a certain type of maturity and musical genius that transcend demographics. He has a bit of the old and the new incorporated in his music - the rhythm, the beat and the melodies of the past and the present - that are easy to embrace by anyone who appreciates music.
Times are changing.
Unfortunately, many musical greats of the 80’s and the 90’s have already lost the flair that they once enjoyed during their prime, some even deciding to stop making music altogether, that it’s getting more difficult for the modern world to tap talents from a continuously diminishing pool of seasoned musicians.
For our generation, of course, it would be nice to see more of the MTV figures that we grew up listening to performing in the Super Bowl but maybe it’s time to surrender the scepter and give the younger artists a chance to shine.
But don’t pout just yet, 90’s funk-rock superstars The Red Hot Chili Peppers will share the stage with Mars as guest performers during the half-time show on Sunday and if you’re familiar with the Peppers, it would be quite interesting how spicy the group’s performance with the young headliner is going to get.
Let’s gear up for Super Bowl everyone. See you tomorrow at the game, the half-time show that promises to be truly out of this world and the sizzling TV commercials and crowded social media in between.