Super Bowl XLVIII: Musical Artists Who'd Be Great Fits for Halftime Show

Sam Stryker@sbstrykerContributor IIIFebruary 13, 2013

Super Bowl XLVIII: Musical Artists Who'd Be Great Fits for Halftime Show

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    With Super Bowl XLVIII to be hosted in the New York area for the first time, expect the NFL to pull out all the stops to make this one of its biggest events ever.

    That includes a difficult decision when they select who performs at the halftime show.

    Beyonce will be a tough act to follow no matter who is selected, but the league should have their pick of the crop when it comes to performers.

    The NFL could go in a variety of directions—choose another female pop star like Lady Gaga, a rapper like Jay-Z, a band like Maroon 5 or a local favorite like Bon Jovi.

    But whomever the league chooses will have to have the star power to match up to the bright lights of the Big Apple.

Lady Gaga

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    After Madonna and Beyonce have performed at the past two Super Bowl halftime shows, the NFL might want to go in a different direction than another female pop star. 

    That being said, Lady Gaga has a lot going for. She’s a New York native, which would provide for a nice storyline. She’s also slated to release her next album Artpop later this year.

    But most of all, Lady Gaga can provide both theatrics and talent that are well suited to an international broadcast. Her music spans genres from pop to rock and she surely would draw a broad audience.

    Gaga may be an outside-the-box pick, but she’s got what it takes to perform on her home turf.

Maroon 5

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    Several years ago this pick would have been laughable, but ever since lead singer Adam Levine joined the cast of the singing competition The Voice, Maroon 5 has been on a tear.

    The band has released hit after hit, from “Moves Like Jagger” to “Payphone” and has the sort of broad appeal necessary to perform in such a venue.

    Maroon 5 would be a safe pick and a smart one as well. The band’s music is fresh and upbeat, and after two straight years of female performers, such a selection would be inspired.

    In other words, don’t be surprised if you see Adam Levine shimmying on a New York stage at next year’s Super Bowl.


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    Like Gaga, Rihanna’s potential as a halftime performer may be hurt by the fact that she’d be the third female pop star chosen in a row for the Big Game.

    But if anyone is worthy of continuing that streak, it’s Rihanna.

    The Barbadian-born pop star boasts the spunky attitude that made Beyonce’s performance this year such a success.

    Rihanna also boasts a deep catalog of hits, from ballads such as “Diamonds,” her twelfth No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 to up-tempo hits like “We Found Love.” 

    She may just be 24, but Rihanna is a more than worthy pick to sing in New York next year.

Billy Joel

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    Another hometown pick, Joel would be a selection with a distinct nod to the host city.

    He’s got a deep selection of hits, from “Piano Man” to “Only the Good Die Young” that connect with older audiences but also hold crossover appeal. 

    The Bronx native also has performing experience at the Big Game—he sang the national anthem at Super Bowl XLI in Miami.

    Joel is a New York legend and would only add to his legacy by performing at MetLife Stadium in 2014.


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    Like Maroon 5, Coldplay boasts massive international appeal that is important for Super Bowl halftime performers. The band is arena-friendly and more than qualified to perform on such a big stage.

    The band claims such hits as “Clocks,” “Speed of Sound” and “Viva la Vida.” Perhaps a collaborative performance with Rihanna—who sings on Coldplay’s hit “Princess of China”—could be in the works. 

    Lead singer Chris Martin and company are already working on their sixth album, and the Super Bowl might be the perfect time to launch such an endeavor. 

Bon Jovi

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    Bon Jovi would be the ultimate nod to any local New Jersey fans who attend the game at MetLife Stadium in East Brunswick, N.J. 

    Based out of the Garden State, the band has been performing strong for three decades, yet still hold massive appeal. Bon Jovi is the type of pick who would appeal to audiences both young and old, a crucial factor in deciding the halftime performer. 

    The band is scheduled to release their newest album later this year, making a Super Bowl performance next season perfectly timed. 

    Don’t be surprised if lead singer Jon Bon Jovi and company make the ultimate homecoming and perform at Super Bowl XLVIII.


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    Shawn Carter, better known by his stage name Jay-Z, would be yet another local favorite if selected to perform at the Super Bowl in 2014.

    A Brooklyn native, Jay-Z has both critical acclaim (he’s won 17 Grammys) and popular success on his side.

    Between his own personal projects and collaborations (think Watch the Throne with Kanye West, who might be a strong supporting act) Jay-Z has the credentials to perform at the Big Game.

    It might be considered an odd choice if the NFL selected Beyonce’s husband as the follow-up act, but the New York native would combine local flair with national popularity.