Super Bowl LVI between the NFL’s Los Angeles Rams and Cincinnati Bengals takes place this Sunday (February 13) — and there are plenty of football-related reasons that an estimated 117 million viewers could tune in for the big game.
We know, however, that not everyone who watches Super Bowls is really interested in which football team is going to walk away champions. Not counting the snacks necessary to fully experience the Super Bowl, many people devote the day to football because they enjoy watching the TV commercials and Halftime Show.
Along with the music during halftime, there are other musical performances that take place prior to the game that usually feature high-profile talent. In addition to the U.S. National Anthem, other patriotic and faith-based songs that have been performed at the pre-game show in the past include “America the Beautiful,” “God Bless America,” and “Lift Every Voice and Sing.”
In the last 56 years, a handful of Latines have taken the mic to sing during the Super Bowl. Here is a look at seven of those performances that are still notable today.
Gloria Estefan (1999)
During the Halftime Show at Super Bowl XXXIII, Estefan joined Stevie Wonder and Big Bad Voodoo Daddy to entertain fans live at the Pro Player Stadium in Miami Gardens, Florida, and those watching from home. She sang solo on two songs, “Oye!” and “Turn the Beat Around,” before teaming up with Wonder for a performance of “You’ll Be Mine (Party Time),” “Another Star,” and “My Cherie Amour.” The theme of the halftime show was “Celebration of Soul, Salsa, and Swing.” See how many dancers you can count who are wearing neon-colored outfits.
Marc Anthony (2002)
The first Super Bowl after the 9/11 tragedy was an emotional one. Anthony helped capture that sentiment when he joined fellow singer Mary J. Blige and the Boston Pops Orchestra to perform “America the Beautiful.” The duet with Blige was a powerful rendition. Military members stood close by, and millions of Americans looked on and remembered what makes the United States such a great country.
Mariah Carey (2002)
At Super Bowl XXXVI, Carey sang the U.S. National Anthem in the New Orleans Superdome. The Boston Pops Orchestra accompanied her. Referred to by the announcer as the “biggest-selling female recording artist in history” (although Madonna might have something to say about that today), Carey started the anthem softly and with lots of control. Her beautiful voice carried through the entire song, and she even had enough power to belt out an incredibly high note on the word “free.” How many octaves was that anyway?
Christina Aguilera (2011)
The pop superstar was inside Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas, for Super Bowl XLV when she took the stage to perform the U.S. National Anthem a cappella. Unfortunately, Aguilera flubbed some of the lyrics but was able to find her way back with “and the rocket’s red glare” as the 103,000 people in attendance roared in approval. And, of course, what’s an Aguilera solo without a few vocal runs?
Demi Lovato (2020)
Dressed in a stylish white pantsuit on the 50-yard-line of the Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens, Florida, for Super Bowl LIV, Lovato sang a classic rendition of the U.S. National Anthem to a crowd of 62,000. At the end of her performance, the camera cut to four American combat jets from the U.S Marines and U.S. Navy streaking across the nighttime sky.
J.Lo & Shakira (2020)
Super Bowl LIV was full of Latine talent. Along with Lovato singing “The Star-Spangled Banner,” superstar Jennifer López took the stage during the Halftime Show to sing solos like “Jenny from the Block,” “Ain’t It Funny (Murder Remix),” “Get Right,” “Waiting for Tonight” and “On the Floor.” Headlining with J.Lo was Colombian singer Shakira, who joined her on stage to perform solos to tracks like “Dare (La La La),” “She Wolf,” “Empire,” and “Ojos así.” The duo ended the night with a performance of Shakira’s “Waka Waka (This Time for Africa).”
Bad Bunny & J Balvin (2020)
Although he wasn’t headlining the Super Bowl LIV Halftime Show, Bad Bunny brought down the house when he joined Shakira on stage to perform “I Like It,” “Chantaje,” and “Callaíta.” Also, making an appearance during the show was J Balvin, who teamed up with J.Lo. for “Booty,” “Que Calor,” “El Anillo,” “Love Don’t Cost a Thing,” and “Mi Gente.” Talk about a packed Halftime Show!