Coldplay to perform at Super Bowl 50. Who might join them at halftime?

The NFL has announced that Coldplay will perform at next February's Super Bowl and other artists may sign on, as well. The choice of Coldplay is an interesting one, considering past Super Bowl halftime shows.

Jack Plunkett/Invision/AP
Coldplay performs at the iTunes Festival during the SXSW Music Festival in Austin, Texas in 2014.

The band Coldplay will perform during the halftime show for Super Bowl 50.

The NFL has announced that the British band, which is known for such songs as “Yellow” and “Viva La Vida” and just released a new album, “A Head Full of Dreams,” will take the stage during the program and that Coldplay frontman Chris Martin will work on the design.

The choice is a move away from recent Super Bowl halftime shows, which had newer chart-topping performers like Katy Perry, Beyonce, and Bruno Mars taking the stage. Coldplay’s 2014 album “Ghost Stories” debuted at number one on the Billboard 200 chart and the album spawned songs that were successful on the charts like “A Sky Full of Stars” and “Magic,” but they are viewed as more of a rock act than artists like Perry or Mars.

This represents a turn back to the run of halftime shows of rock acts following Janet Jackson’s 2004 wardrobe malfunction. After the incident, older rockers like Paul McCartney, The Rolling Stones, and Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers took the stage. Choosing first the Black Eyed Peas for the 2011 game and then acts like Beyonce and Mars represented a swing back to acts that are more pop. 

However, the Super Bowl halftime show has a history of bringing together performances from different musical eras and genres. In 2012, for example, Madonna performed alongside newer acts like Nicki Minaj and LMFAO. Mars’ show had him teaming up with the rock band the Red Hot Chili Peppers, while Lenny Kravitz joined Perry onstage.

In the NFL’s announcement, the league said that “other special acts” will be involved, so this tradition will most likely be followed – perhaps the NFL will bring in newer performers like Taylor Swift or Pharrell Williams alongside Coldplay to attempt to appeal to multiple demographics, something that’s crucial during the massive Super Bowl event. (Mars and Beyonce are rumored to be possibilities to return.)

The Super Bowl is so big that performing there can be a boon to album or ticket sales to the artists. Coldplay had previously revealed that the band will tour in 2016 and some are predicting that the Super Bowl gig could help their tour ticket sales.

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