When it was announced that Usher would be headlining the 2024 Super Bowl halftime show, the music world was buzzing with excitement. However, for Usher, this momentous opportunity is not just the result of recent preparations, but rather the culmination of preparation that spans over three decades.
In a recent interview, Usher shared his thoughts on being chosen for the highly coveted Super Bowl spot. He revealed that the call came from none other than Jay-Z, the chairman and founder of Roc Nation, which has been responsible for producing the Super Bowl halftime show since 2020. Hov, as Usher affectionately calls him, said, “It’s your magic moment. This is it. This is your Michael moment.”
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Usher, however, couldn’t help but feel the immense pressure that comes with such a stage. He laughed as he recalled his response, saying, “That’s a lot of pressure, bro.” It’s understandable, given the legendary performances that have graced the Super Bowl stage, including icons like Beyoncé and Prince.
So, what can fans expect from Usher’s halftime gig? In his words, “You’re going to get hit records.” He wants to play songs that people instantly recognize and ones that he celebrates.
Hinting at the possibility of special guests joining him onstage at Las Vegas’ Allegiant Stadium, Usher said, “I’ve also collaborated with a lot of people in the process, so… there’s a celebration there. You gotta decode it.” It seems that Usher has some surprises up his sleeve that fans will have to wait until 11th February 2024, to experience.
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For Usher, the Super Bowl performance is a pinnacle in his career. He emphasized, “It doesn’t get any bigger.” To prepare for the 13-minute set, he’s drawing from his previous experience of performing at the Super Bowl. In 2011, he collaborated with Black Eyed Peas frontman Will.i.am for a memorable halftime performance in Arlington, Texas. Usher descended from the stadium ceiling to deliver his hit ‘OMG.’
Usher’s musical catalogue is extensive, featuring chart-toppers like ‘Yeah!’ with Ludacris and Lil Jon, ‘Burn,’ ‘Confessions Part II,’ ‘U Got It Bad,’ ‘U Remind Me,’ ‘You Make Me Wanna,’ and ‘Love in the Club.’ As he put it, “Don’t take the moments for granted because you only get 13 of them.”
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Beyond his music career, Usher is also using his Super Bowl moment to raise awareness about early Type 1 diabetes screening. His connection to the cause runs deep, as his child was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes at a young age in 2014. Through The 1 Pledge movement, which he launched in collaboration with healthcare company Sanofi, Usher aims to encourage early screenings.
Reflecting on his own experience, he stressed the importance of early detection, saying, “Had I known about this opportunity early, I would feel better.” He recognizes that managing Type 1 diabetes involves a complex journey, not only for the child but for the entire family.
With decades of experience and an extensive catalogue of hit songs, he is set to create a magical moment that will be one for the ages.