The Top 5 Super Bowl Halftime Show Performances

A hundred million people plus will be tuning into this weekend's Super Bowl LVII taking place in Glendale, Arizona between the Kansas City Chiefs and Philadelphia Eagles.

But let's be honest, unless you're a fan of either team, how invested can one really be?

Sure, the rise of sports betting has of course made people care more about random games that their favorite teams aren't in, but historically the Super Bowl is the SUPER BOWL because of everything else that comes along with it.

In some instances - it can be better than the actual game itself.

Of course I'm talking the commercials and the Halftime Show.


In the past, the Super Bowl commercials had always been a must-see.

However, for some reason the corporations and brands have started releasing the commercials ahead of time - thus spoiling the "shock and awe" aspect. Literally you can Google and find many of the commercials that you will see tomorrow during the game. Sure, there will be a few surprises here and there but not nearly like it used to be.

Oh yeah, plus in recent years the commercials have been awful. (Bring back the "Bud-Weis-Errrr" frogs please!)

So with the commercials now being lame, all attention will be on the Halftime Show.


This will be the first year that Apple Music takes control of the Halftime festivities since Pepsi had a hold on it for years.

And despite saying that she would never play the Super Bowl because of the league's response to Colin Kaepernick and not agreeing with the NFL's morals, I guess Rihanna had a change of heart because she agreed to perform this year.

I'm not really sure what changed in recent years in the NFL for Rihanna to change her mind. Oh wait, she has a new album coming out and she'll be able to perform in front of 100 million people. Funny how that works out.


So ahead of Rihanna's performance tomorrow night, I decided to take a delve into the Halftime Shows that have already happened - and everything that's come along with it.

From technical difficulties, to marching bands, to wardrobe malfunctions and more - the Super Bowl has had some of the most iconic names, as well as 'buzz bands' that were big at the moment.

It wasn't an easy list to make, especially when you consider how production and sound has changed throughout the years. Also you need to consider the impact that some songs had at the time with what was going on in the world.

But without further ado, here are the Top 5 Super Bowl Halftime Shows. (According to me at least)

*** NOTE: Because the NFL doesn't like people having fun, many of these links below have to be clicked on to see the performance because they won't let us post the actual performance. Don't blame us - blame the NFL***


Coming in at number 5 we have what was known as the "Blues Brothers Bash" as Dan Aykroyd, John Goodman and Jim Belushi came out in the portrayal of the iconic film characters. In Jim's case, honoring his older brother John who was in the original Blues Brothers movie.

This performance made the list because it was the perfect blend of absolute chaos and FUN.

To see a John Goodman have no idea what is going on and is straight up living his best life is entertaining as hell.

The fact that it took place in New Orleans, Louisiana at Mercedes-Benz Stadium made it a no-brainer as to how well the music would resonate.

You can't tell me that some of those songs didn't absolutely crush.

Plus they brought out James Brown and all of a sudden ZZ Top starts ripping some guitar solos? The perfect blend of mainstream semi-corniness with Aykroyd and Goodman and two iconic musicians put this one on the list.


I mean let's be real - there's a reason Bruce Springsteen is one of the greatest musicians of all time.

Springsteen straight up brought the energy and of course the hits during his Halftime performance, showcasing a medley of various songs including the greats like 'Born to Run' and 'Glory Days.'

It was also the first show to have a live audience on the field during their performance. Springsteen demanded it, saying he didn't want to perform without that live crowd reaction. Soon after, every artist began incorporating a live audience.


Beyonce's performance came at a time when social media was going from a niche, cool thing to be a part of into the eventual massive outlet it is today.

Her show reportedly brought in 299,000 tweets per minute - making it the most tweeted thing the platform had ever seen. It was one of the first live events that showed the potential of what social media could become; millions of people reacting to something in real-time.

It also proved just how relevant and impactful the Super Bowl can be.

In the week that followed, Beyonce sold 220,000 digital songs, which was up 80% from the previous week.

Oh, and it also happened during the legendary 'blackout game' in New Orleans at the Superdome where the power suddenly went out and delayed the start of the second half of the game. Eventually the 49ers came back from behind and defeated the Ravens.


It's hard to believe but this will be the 30th Anniversary of Michael Jackson's Super Bowl XXVII performance.

The game was played during the daytime at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, California with the Dallas Cowboys ultimately defeating the Buffalo Bills. Jackson reportedly asked the league and producers if they could move the game time back a couple hours because he said his performance would look better in the darkness, however the NFL declined.

Jackson's performance was the first one to transition from what used to be various marching bands and random acts to now mainstream stars.

Look at the beginning of the performance - he stands motionless for 90 seconds as the crowd goes wild before he does his various songs throughout his music career. And yes, even though the "Heal the World" part can be kind of cringe, the whole entire show was definitely groundbreaking and monumental and without a doubt needs to be towards the top of anyone's list.

With over 133 MILLION people tuning in, Jackson made the event the global spectacle that we know it as today.


There will never be a Halftime Show better than Prince's.

The iconic star was able to deliver in such a way that brought his core fanbase as well as casual fans and heck, even those that didn't even care about him to at least respect and appreciate him after that night.

Prince made the show literally a mini-concert. He jammed out so many hits including '1999' as well as covers of songs like 'All Along the Watchtower,' 'Proud Mary,' and even the Foo Fighter's 'Best of You.'

But the biggest moment of the night was when he performed 'Purple Rain,'

Already a song that everyone associates with Prince... you couldn't script the story if you even wanted to.

As he's performing the song - it literally stars downpouring.

Purple Rain WHILE it's also downpouring?!

Unbelievable. Truly an amazing moment and that is why Prince's performance tops the list and will always be the best Halftime Show ever.

What are your thoughts on the Halftime Show list? Post your favorite performances below!

Written by
Mike “Gunz” Gunzelman has been involved in the sports and media industry for over a decade. He’s also a risk taker - the first time he ever had sushi was from a Duane Reade in Penn Station in NYC.