Theme Ride Thursday: Super Bowl Halftime Showstopper Profile

The Super Bowl halftime show is the ultimate merger of sports and pop culture; what better resource for an indoor cycling playlist than this collection of iconic musical performers? Fern has taken this idea and created a different kind of Super Bowl celebration with her new Super Bowl Halftime Showstoppers profile. You can find that profile and playlist below, along with a bucket playlist of halftime performers over the decades if you want to switch out some songs or create your own halftime performers profile.

Click here for this year’s updated Super Bowl playlists (KC Chiefs and SF 49ers) and links to our fabulous fun interactive profiles.

When Did the Modern Super Bowl Halftime Show Begin?

The Super Bowl is one of the most-watched single-day sporting events in the world captivating audiences from around the globe. Each year, the halftime show strives to outdo its predecessors, becoming as much a part of the Super Bowl experience as the game itself. From unforgettable moments to controversial performances, the halftime show consistently generates buzz and excitement, drawing in millions of viewers. The halftime show has become a platform for cutting-edge technology and innovative storytelling, pushing the boundaries of what is possible in a live entertainment event.

There is a long history of the evolution of the halftime show as we know it today; you can read more about it here. Before the 1990’s, there were marching bands and drill teams. To keep audiences glued to the TV, the modern-day halftime show extravaganza was born. Michael Jackson. headlined the first major halftime show at Super Bowl XXVII in 1995 

The typical format of each performance now features popular contemporary musicians as single headline artists often collaborating with a small number of guest acts. The NFL does not pay the halftime show performers an appearance fee, though it covers all expenses for the performers and their entourage of band members, management, technical crew, security personnel, family, and friends. Performing at the Super Bowl halftime show is considered a pinnacle of success for musicians and is an opportunity to showcase their talent to a global audience. 

Rating the “best” Super Bowl halftime shows is subjective and varies based on personal preferences, cultural impact, and overall production quality. Rolling Stone has a list of best Super Bowl halftime shows as does BillboardTimeout, NBC Sports, and Vulture.  Despite where a performance may land on any given list, several halftime shows are frequently cited as standout performances due to their iconic moments, memorable performances, and significant influence.  Below are some of my favorite performances. (NOTE: The NFL blocks some of these links from being displayed on websites, but you can still watch them on YouTube.)

When you think of the Super Bowl, sports betting might be one of the first things that come to mind. From football pools to numerous betting opportunities on aspects like the winning team, point differentials, coin toss outcomes, and even the color of the celebratory Gatorade, there’s no shortage of gambling options. And of course, you can even place bets on the halftime show, predicting the first song to be sung and which musical stars might make a surprise guest appearance. Usher is set to headline the halftime show in Las Vegas on February 11, 2024. Care to wager a guess on which song he’ll kick off with?

ICA members can download Fern’s Super Bowl Halftime Showstoppers profile below, a rolling hills journey to celebrate the musicians from the best halftime shows of all time. 

You’ll also find a bucket playlist of over 250 songs from musicians who have performed at the Super Bowl.

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