The Truth About Music: Play It Loud

"What's hot, what's not, and whats next in pop music"

Opinion: Musical Mash-Ups Needed to Make the Magic Happen at Super Bowl

It’s been seven years since the world got a sneak peak of Janet Jackson’s areola on national television. And ever since, the Super Bowl halftime performances have been as weak as a grown man drinking Zima. Last night’s Black Eyed Peas performance was a half-assed attempt at bringing the energy back to what’s become known as “the fifteen minutes you change channels until the game comes back on.” The post-Nipplegate halftime performance world is no fun.

The Super Bowl has a tough job to do. It’s the most watched event on television every year, and the halftime performance has to please many different types of people from diehard sports fans to those that are only there for the commercials, spanning generations from grandmas to little kids and everyone in between. So, I understand why the networks have been in favor of lameness. Who would want a billion dollar fine from the FCC?

However, censorship shouldn’t equate to lackluster performances from middle-aged men who passed their prime a decade ago. And, the funny thing is censorship hasn’t even been successful with them. The Rolling Stones’ lyrics had to be bleeped out because they were too sexually suggestive, the Boss’ crotch got a little too close to a camera, and at the end of his set in 2007, Prince feigned masturbation with a giant phallic-shaped guitar.

It’s the Super Bowl for goodness sake! The halftime performance should be the most anticipated event of the year. Performances should be high-energy, exciting, memorable, and leave people talking for weeks. And, what’s better than a good music mash-up? Mash-ups not only have the ability to please people of all ages, but they are exciting because they pair up artists who you would never get to see perform together, otherwise.

They started music mash-ups in the late 90’s with acts like Boyz II Men performing with Smokey Robinson, Martha Reeves, The Temptations, Queen Latifah. But no halftime performance rocked harder than the MTV produced mash-up of Aerosmith, Britney Spears, N’Sync, Mary J. Blige, Nelly, Adam Sandler, Chris Rock and Ben Stiller. When it comes to harnessing pop culture, MTV knows what they are doing.

Unfortunately, the nipple seen round the world has ruined their chances of producing another epic halftime performance. And, the Black Eyed Peas weren’t the best choice to “pump it up.” There were memorable bits and pieces from their performance, but overall I expected more. It didn’t help that Dallas’ sound system sucks. But, at least they didn’t flub their lyrics.

Next year, I vote for Jay-Z or Diddy to produce the halftime performance. Jigga is the king of music mash-ups, has relationships with everyone in the game, and would never put his name on something less than perfect. Diddy has all of these qualities, plus an awards show under his belt. The year that Diddy took charge of the VMA’s, was by far the best show MTV’s ever done.

So, to those in charge of the Super Bowl halftime performance: I’m counting on you to bring it next year. You have 364 days to figure it out.

Add A Comment