The 1993 Super Bowl halftime show was an epic win for its producers. Even decades later, it is still considered one of the most memorable performances, and how could it not be? The King of Pop himself was the star of the show.
Jackson’s entrance on stage lasted a full minute and a half because the audience wouldn’t stop yelling with excitement. Jackson started with “Jam” and continued with the timeless classic “Billie Jean.” He closed the show with an emotional children’s choir singing “We Are the World” and finished with an incredible rendition of “Heal the World.”
Best: Bruce Springsteen, 2009
The 2009 Super Bowl was one of the most exciting games in the NFL’s history. It was a nail-biting game between the Cardinals and the Steelers, and the halftime show featured the great Bruce Springsteen. The Boss performed an unforgettable 15-minute set, rocking out hits like “Born to Run” and “Tenth Avenue Freeze-Out”.
The show producers had been trying to get Springsteen to perform for the halftime show for years, but he had turned the offer down. So, in 2009, everybody was extremely happy to have him on stage, especially after that epic knee-slide straight into the camera.
Best: Aerosmith, Britney Spears, 'N Sync, Nelly, & Mary J. Blige, 2001
Now, this was a lineup that looked great on paper and ended up being even better on stage. For the 2001 halftime show, producers made sure to book the most famous music artists of the year, which back then were Britney Spears and NSYNC. The sheer fact of having Spears and Timberlake on stage was enough to drive the crowd wild.
Aerosmith’s “Walk This Way” was one of the craziest performances ever, and then Mary J. Blige entered the stage singing at the top of her lungs. The show was unstoppable and one of the best halftimes in Super Bowl history.
Best: Stevie Wonder, 1999
The crowds in Miami clamored when they saw Stevie Wonder appear for the Super Bowl halftime show of 1999. As always, Wonder was as good as ever, playing all-time favorites that made the audience dance their feet off. He also played a homage to Duke Ellington’s 100th birthday with the song “Sir Duke”.
To boot, Gloria Estefan recovered from her 1992 halftime show flop and wowed people with a salsa percussion performance. And who can forget the cameo from Big Bad Voodoo Daddy? Or Stevie Wonder driving on the football field?!
Best: Bruno Mars and the Red Hot Chili Peppers, 2014
Performing at the halftime show one year after Beyonce’s stellar act must have been nerve-wracking, but fortunately, Bruno Mars and the Red Hot Chili Peppers pulled it off. After dozens of teenage dancers took the stage for the 2014 halftime show, Bruno Mars suddenly filled the spotlight by banging on the drums. Mars sang, played all the instruments, danced around, and was basically a one-man show.
Then the legendary rock band Red Hot Chili Peppers appeared on stage, and everyone went wild. The band took off their shirts and started going crazy on stage and playing their most beloved hits. It was like a rave on stage.