By Mya Singleton / @MyaMelody7
Attending a Super Bowl game is a sports lover’s dream. Witnessing your favorite team compete for the Vince Lombardi trophy is the icing on the cake after watching a stressful season. While the majority of the world watches the big game on TV, scoring tickets to the sporting spectacle doesn’t come cheap, but luckily the game isn’t the only hot ticket to cop. Super Bowl LI is quickly approaching and the city of Houston is prepping to score touchdowns on and off the field.
For Houston fans, they may be a bit bummed about their Texans missing the mark, however that doesn’t mean local residents are dodging out of town. As the New England Patriots and Atlanta Falcons prepare to go head-to-head on Sunday, the hosting city knows the Super Bowl must offer much more than the game itself, especially for music fans. The events leading up to the game makes the Super Bowl an unforgettable experience. Whether that means slaying the dance floor at a star-studded party or grabbing an autograph from a player, Super Bowl Week is the place to be. For years, we’ve seen the worlds of music and sports create magical moments, and Super Bowl week is no different.
Last year, a huge portion of the events for Super Bowl 50 were hosted in my hometown of San Francisco (the game itself was in Santa Clara). Now if you’re a music connoisseur like me, then you made a game plan of which concerts were going to be the hottest in town. The show I refused to miss was seeing Pharrell perform. He’s the type of artist that doesn’t tour very often, so when he comes to town, you have to snag a ticket quickly. Anybody who’s a Skateboard P fan knows this super-producer has a long resume of hit songs with some of the biggest names in music. The best part about catching a Pharrell show is that he always brings out special guests. So imagine singing your best rendition of “Frontin’” and then next thing you know, T.I. hops on stage to perform “Blurred Lines” and the crowd goes wild! However, the best part about attending a Super Bowl event is that all your favorite celebrities are in town. People like Swizz Beatz, DJ Khaled, Steelers wideout Antonio Brown and Saints quarterback Drew Brees were all in attendance partying to Pharrell that night.
If you’re a big music fan or simply enjoy taking selfies with celebrities, then Super Bowl Live is one of the week’s go-to events. A nine-day festival in downtown Houston featuring exhibits, food, and of course, live performances. Texas is known for breeding some of the biggest names in music as it is—Willie Nelson, Selena, UGK and the queen herself, Beyoncé. Typically, the hosting city books a plethora of artists from all over the world. However, Houston decided to show an abundance of hometown pride by only booking artists hailing from its own part of town, and these are performances you don’t want to miss.
For the R&B fans, make sure to mark your calendars when Solange hits the stage. If you want to hear music about healing, self-empowerment and Black magic, then you want to be front and center for Solange. After her third album peaked at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 chart last year, she continues to prove that Beyoncé isn’t the only talented musician in the Knowles family. The best part about seeing Solange perform is her ability to bring enchanting visuals to the stage. When she took over the Saturday Night Live stage last November, Solange and her crew dazzled as they brought her videos to life. (Not to mention, Beyoncé was in the audience cheering her sister on. Queen Bey may just show up again to support her sister at SB Live and rep her beloved H-Town.)
For hip-hop and soul fans, Robert Glasper is a set you want to watch. He may not be a huge household name to some, but you’ve probably heard his sound more than you think. Primarily known as a jazz musician, he’s worked with some of the biggest hip-hop and pop artists including Common, Erykah Badu, Norah Jones, and Kendrick Lamar. The last time I attended a Robert Glasper show, he brought out singers Lalah Hathaway and Bilal to perform some of their collaborations. Let’s just say, you know never know what special guest is going to share the stage with him to surprise the crowd.
The thing that makes this concert line-up so dynamic is the type of artists across different genres. So whether you’re a fan of Leon Bridges’ throwback ‘60s tone or ZZ Top rocking out on guitars, there’s something for everyone’s musical taste. To top it all off, fans can enjoy Super Bowl Live without paying a single dime. That’s right, you can check out this eclectic roster of artists for free! It’s a family-friendly event that fans of all ages can enjoy, just make sure to get there early to see your favorite artists.
Although the Texans missed out on playing in the championship game this year, the music line-up at Super Bowl Live gives residents a deeper sense of pride to constantly rep their city.
Mya Singleton a.k.a. Mya Melody is a music writer hailing from the Bay Area. As the current music editor for TSFJ, think of her as the playlist virtuoso or the audio aficionado for sports fans everywhere. Although music is her first love, she occasionally partakes in any argument regarding the NBA. She’s a huge Kobe Bryant fan who’s still upset Chris Paul never became a Laker. To this day, Hardball is one of the saddest movies she’s ever watched, R.I.P. G-Baby! Follow her as she navigates to change the face of music journalism and remember, a wise philosopher once said, “Music gives a soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination and life to everything.”