Maroon 5 will take the stage on Sunday in Atlanta for what is probably the least-anticipated Super Bowl halftime show in recent memory.
People jeered when the NFL announced the LA-based band fronted by Adam Levine would perform during the most-watched television event of the year. Some people wanted an artist that better reflected Atlanta’s musical heritage. Others wanted the band to refuse to perform in a show of solidarity with quarterback Colin Kaepernick. A few just felt the band was too boring to merit such a high-profile gig.
Perhaps in an effort to sidestep the controversy, Maroon 5 went so far as to cancel the routine pre-game press conference, instead deciding to “let their show do the talking,” according to a statement from the league.
In short, this year’s halftime show is likely to leave a lot of people unsatisfied. And what does Maroon 5 get for being the butt of jokes and the target of criticism? Not a lot, at least financially.
Super Bowl halftime performers aren’t paid
The halftime show is a big deal – so big of a deal, in fact, that the NFL seems to feel that the free press means it doesn’t need to pay the people who perform. Maroon 5, Travis Scott, and Big Boi will be working for free on Sunday. That’s in keeping with a long-standing practice of not compensating halftime show acts.
While acts are not paid to perform, the NFL does shoulder the costs of producing the show and picks up other expenses, according to Fox Business. In addition, performers get other benefits from doing the halftime show.
More than 100 million people typically tune in to watch the Super Bowl, a massive audience that’s virtually unheard in this day and age. Having the undivided attention of so many people can pay big dividends. Last year, sales of Justin Timberlake songs increased by 534% on the day of game, Fox Business reported. Lady Gaga, the 2017 halftime performer, sa a 1,000% increase.
The band and the NFL just donated $500,000 to charity
While Maroon 5 won’t take home a paycheck for playing the Super Bowl, they did get together with the NFL to make a donation to Big Brothers Big Sisters of America. Along with Interscope Records, the band and the league will give the non-profit group $500,000.
“Playing the Super Bowl has been a dream of our band for a long time,” Levine told People magazine. “We thank the NFL for the opportunity and also to them, along with Interscope Records, for making this donation to Big Brothers Big Sisters, which will have a major impact for children across the country.”
The BBBSA isn’t the only group getting a sizable donation from the NFL. Rapper Scott and the league will give $500,000 to Dream Corps, an organization founded by CNN’s Van Jones that “closes prison doors and opens doors of opportunity for all.” Scott and the NFL arranged the donation after he came under harsh criticism for agreeing to do the show, Variety reported.
“I know being an artist that it’s in my power to inspire,” Scott said in a statement. “So before confirming the Super Bowl Halftime performance, I made sure to partner with the NFL on this important donation. I am proud to support Dream Corps and the work they do that will hopefully inspire and promote change.”
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