This year Rihanna is set to put on a memorable and EPIC halftime show. Of course football is at the center, but the Super Bowl isn’t just about the touchdowns, tough tackles and Hail Marys. Since Michael Jackson’s extravagant performance changed the halftime show game in the early '90s, viewers also have a show-stopping halftime performance to look forward to every year.
Not only has the NFL scored some major superstars like Prince, Madonna, Beyoncé, Britney Spears and The Rolling Stones, but the mid-game show is also known for its genre-crossing performances that take the stage. In honor of the upcoming Super Bowl LVII this Sunday (February 12), I have compiled a list of the most unexpected halftime performances to date. Last year, Eminem, Dr. Dre, Snoop Dogg, Kendrick Lamar and Mary J. Blige took to the stage for the first hip-hop California centric halftime show ever, but check out these one-of-a-kind collabs below.
1. Britney Spears, *NSYNC, Aerosmith, Nelly and Mary J. Blige - Super Bowl XXXV, 2001: In 2001, when pop princesses and boy bands were ruling the world of music, it was fitting that Britney Spears and *NSYNC would come together on one of the biggest stages. What made this show legendary was the addition of Aerosmith, Mary J. Blige and Nelly for a performance of “Walk This Way”.
Madonna, LMFAO, Nicki Minaj and M.I.A. - Super Bowl XLVI, 2012: Dressed as a Greek goddess, the singer performed crowd pleasers like “Vogue” and duets of “Like A Prayer” and “Express Yourself” with Cee Lo Green. The stage then turned into one big party with dance duo LMFAO for a mashup of “Party Rock Anthem” and her track, “Music”. Rappers Nicki Minaj and M.I.A. also joined the Queen of Pop onstage for their verses on "Give Me All Your Luvin”.
Shania Twain, No Doubt and Sting - Super Bowl XXXVII, 2003: Country legend Shania Twain kicked off the 2003 halftime show before No Doubt’s duet with Sting for an updated “Message In A Bottle”.
Bruno Mars and Red Hot Chili Peppers - Super Bowl XLVIII, 2014: Bruno Mars’ halftime show broke records with it’s 115+ million viewers, making it the most watched performance at that time. He also delivered a surprise performance alongside The Red Hot Chili Peppers to collaborate on their track, "Give It Away”.
Coldplay, Beyoncé and Bruno Mars - Super Bowl 50, 2016: Coldplay opened the Super Bowl 50 halftime show with a colorful display of hits like “Viva La Vida” and “Paradise”. Two years after his headlining halftime act, Bruno Mars crashed the show with a high-energy performance of “Uptown Funk” before engaging in a dance-off with Queen Bey herself. The three superstar acts closed the show together with Coldplay’s “Up&Up”.
Who could forget? Janet Jackson, Justin Timberlake, P. Diddy, Nelly, Kid Rock and Jessica Simpson: Although the 2004 show had a lineup stacked with an unexpected collaboration of artists and a stellar performance from Janet Jackson, the real talk of the event was her infamous wardrobe malfunction with surprise-guest, Justin Timberlake.
And of course the last time country really dominated the halftime show and was well represneted. You have to look all the way back to the early 90's when Clint Black, Travis Tritt, Tanya Tucker,and Wynonna and Naomi crushed it.