NFL Sought Potential Payment From Super Bowl Halftime Show Musicians – Report

NFL Halftime Show Seeks Artist Payment

The National Football League has in some cases inquired about the possibility of having the musicians who might play the halftime show for Super Bowl XLIX pay for the privilege of doing so, according to a report in The Wall Street Journal.

The newspaper said Tuesday that the NFL asked representatives of Coldplay, Katy Perry and Rihanna if they would be willing to make some sort of financial contribution to the League in exchange for their appearance, citing people familiar with the matter. One potential scenario involved the artist contributing some portion of post-Super Bowl tour income to the NFL. The artists gave the ideas a “chilly reception,” the paper reported.

“Our focus is putting on the best show for the millions of fans who watch it,” said NFL spokeswoman Joanna Hunter, adding that details of conversations about contracts with artists are “confidential.”

The effort may show the NFL attempting to defray costs of one of the Super Bowl’s signature events. Once centered on marching bands and contributions from performance groups such as “Up With People,” the halftime show has for several years been filled by a concert from a popular musician or rock band. Last year, the NFL and Pepsi made a bid for youth, tapping Bruno Mars and The Red Hot Chili Peppers to take the reins of the mid-game event. For several years prior, the halftime show featured older artists like Bruce Springsteen, Tom Petty and Madonna. Production costs for the event are said to have soared to $10 million.

The NFL may be looking at the halo effect a musical performance at the Super Bowl has on the artist’s work. Bruno Mars’ “Unorthodox Jukebox” album saw sales increase 180% during the week of the 2014 Super Bowl, and then rise 92% in the week following the game, according to data from Billboard. After Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers appeared in the halftime show of the 2008 game, sales of the band’s “Greatest Hits” album rose 196%, to 33,000 in the week following the game. Digital sales of individual songs played during the band’s mini-concert also rose significantly.

Super Bowl XLIX is slated to take place near Phoenix on Feb. 1. NBC will telecast the game. Pepsi is the sponsor of the halftime show. A Pepsi spokeswoman told the paper the company is not involved in the signing of talent for the event.

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  1. Arthur S. says:

    Golly, gee ! Is NFL complaining that they have expenses running their multi-billion dollar business; and, therefore, people and performers should give goods, services, and performances for free?! Poor NFL already has reduced taxes on various things. Poor NFL ! Who would have believed that you are a charity case? Who?

  2. Darrin says:

    What a bunch of arrogant idiots, performs should just ay no to the NFL, when hey ask. This way they don’t have a half time. Entertainers are pretty full of themselves, but the NFL must really think they can do anything and get away with it. That goes from the Commissioner on down. The prices they charge for admission and food is robbery.

  3. Deidra says:

    I got a change org. in my email that the NFL is tax exempt, which totally blew me away. I did sign it that I did not think that was right since they are a multi billion dollar business. I have been trying to find out if this is really true. If the very rich owners etc. are exempt from paying taxes like a lot of the other rich people in this country, it is really sick. The rich know all the loop holes in how to get away with taxes. So if the NFL is tax exempt they are really greedy wanting money from entertainers for the half time show. The money they get for commercial time is crazy, their usually better than the game.

    • CNU says:

      Speaking just to the tax issue, the NFL does not pay taxes, the the teams that make up the NFL and the owners of those teams do. The NFL is considered a trade association under the tax code, and money it makes or collects is then distributed to the teams that makes up it’s membership who then pay taxes on those funds.

  4. Lynnacworth says:

    Are they insane, quite often the only reason to watch the Super Bowl is the half time show. I can’t imagine that the league management idiots are so arrogant to think that entertainment is so honored to be asked to perform that they would be thrilled to pay for the honor. The cost of commercial time alone could support a small country’s national debt that should be plenty for the NFL.

  5. Rebecca S. Lane says:

    The Superbowl half time show will be REALLY BORING if the NFL requires payment to greedy assholes who are not content with making BILLIONS off their fans and sponsors! Do the CEO’s of the NFL work for free? Entertainers work all year to perfect their performances. They should be duly compensated!

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