Arcade Fire, Beyonce, T-Pain, Grizzly Bear, Carrie Underwood: Which musicians cashed in at the Super Bowl?

02.08.10 8 years ago

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With an audience of around 80.53 million viewers, you know that any licensing that the NFL and advertising partners for the Super Bowl and its commercial breaks is gonna be a costly one. But what great game doesn’t have a soundtrack? And what bad commercials are made worse with the wrong syncs?

Below, we touch on at least some of the music highlights from yesterday’s Indianapolis Colts vs. New Orleans Saints championship game, including pre-game, advertisements, interstitials and the halftime report.

The Who’s halftime show:

Let’s just knock this one out early: We agree with HitFix Melinda’s full review in that the stage and LCD effects were the best part of this washed-out medley performance. And yes, HitFix Dan, they sure are old. Everybody loves those classic songs, but that doesn’t mean we want to endure 10 minutes of joylessly flaccid revamping in 40-year-old costumes. Oh, but hey, that was Ringo Starr’s son behind the kit! Click here for part one and part two of the show.

Steve Winwood’s pre-game concert:

“Higher Love” is what was broadcasted. Nothing says football like Steve Winwood?

Daughtry’s pre-game concert, basketball commercial:

It seems like “Life After You” has been promoted for 44 years. If you don’t know by now that Chris Daughtry and Co. did this song, you’re never gonna. This isn’t the Macy’s Thankgsgiving Day Parade. Watch it here, a lil overwraught. Here’s a better “Every Time You Turn Around” from yesterday, instead.

Also, Daughtry stars in a promo for the forthcoming NCAA madness. Nothing says basketball like Daughtry?

Wynton Marsalis’ pre-game New Orleans segment:

Whether you were rooting for the Saints or the Ponies, you couldn’t help but be moved by Marsalis’ prose and music piece on the city of New Orleans. You can read the whole “The Spirit of New Orleans” speech on the jazz player’s website.

Rascal Flatts and “CSI”:

This commercial teases a forthcoming ep of the hit cop drama featuring pop-country band Rascal Flatts. It is within that episode that the boys will undoubtedly prove they should just stick to concerts.

Grizzly Bear and Volkswagen:

Hey, that was Grizzly Bear’s “Two Weeks” in a VW commercial! The car company has always done a good job of letting music help make their brand — a culture brand — so this will at least appeal to some folks who listen to NPR. And read this website.

Carrie Underwood and the National Anthem:

“The Star-Spangled Banner” got the white pumps treatment from Carrie Underwood, who SANG THE SONG AT THIS LEVEL START TO FINISH AS IF EVERY NOTE WAS THAT HIGH NOTE. That high note, by the way, went on for years and years. Paula would probably call that last note “pitchy.” She seemed pleased with herself, though, and I never get tired of flyovers. Watch it here.

Queen Latifah and pre-game “God Bless America”:

As a friend said last night: I’m so sick of Queen Latifah. She’s everywhere, and I can’t even tell anymore if she’s good at anything.

Jay-Z’s “Run This Town” pre-game intro:

This Rihanna- and Kanye-featuring track was the perfect start to the game: “Who’s gonna run this town tonight?” All black (and gold) everything… we’re just thrilled there were no New York teams in the running this year so that we wouldn’t have to revert again to “Empire State of Mind.”

T-Pain and Bud Light:

“Auto-Tune the News” did this better. Budweiser decided to extend T-Pain’s 15 minutes about a year late. Cute, but nodding to T-Pain is like when Sprint lamely jumped on the Flava Flav train, or when your mom figured out the whole Snoop Dogg vernacular and started saying “izzle” at the end of everything.

Arcade Fire’s “Wake Up” and the NFL:

Different versions of this ad aired no less than four times, which means donations to Arcade Fire’s charity of choice is the real winner of the night. This particular promo is our favorite.

Michelob Ultra’s ad with Blur:

Blur’s “Song 2” is frequently used at a number of sports events, but now that omnipresent “woo-hoo” is used for football and drinking! Also, a sad reminder that these guys will probably never get back together, particularly considering Damon Albarn’s present project with Gorillaz.

Kia Sorento and The Heavy:

And you thought it was James Brown. No, the sock monkey, Yo Gabba Gabba and other plush characters head to Vegas to the tune of The Heavy’s “How You Like Me Now” in a Kia spot. It’s adorable.

Beyonce, “Chocolate Rain,” “Live Your Life” and Vizio:

Thank goodness that this isn’t “Upgrade U” and that awful tie-in commercial, but still, it features the worst wind machine ever on Bey. A cameo is made by Mr. Chocolate Rain himself, Tay Zonday, and the warbling vocal sample from T.I.’s “Live Your Life.” Also, I still don’t know what a Vizio is.

“My Generation” and FloTV:

Commercial whore Will.I.Am “remixed” The Who’s “My Generation” in order to make it sound exactly like the original recording of The Who’s “My Generation,” which apparently warrants a personal appearance by Mr. I.Am at the end. Also, I still don’t know what a FloTV is.

Kiss’ “Dr. Love” and Dr. Pepper:

They both have “Dr.” in it, get it? Kiss rocks out with little people versions of themselves as the introduce Cherry Dr. Pepper (which by the way sounds disgusting and intriguing). As if it wasn’t obvious before, Kiss is very nearly Spinal Tap, the mission is nearly complete.

Bill Withers’ “Ain’t No Sunshine” and “Dante’s Inferno” video game:

Nothing says full-throttle hellfire, mayhem and destruction like Bill Withers.





Follow HitFix”s Katie Hasty on Twitter for more music and movie news at /katieaprincess.

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