Following a good deal of controversy in the weeks leading up to the 2019 Super Bowl halftime show, pop rock band Maroon 5 and hip-hop artists Travis Scott and Big Boi delivered a high-energy performance for assembled fans at Mercedes-Benz Stadium.
Maroon 5 ran through some of their biggest career hits, including earlier songs like “Harder to Breathe” (2002), “This Love” (2002), and “She Will Be Loved” (2002), and more recent ones like “Moves Like Jagger” (2010) and “Sugar” (2014). For their biggest recent song, 2017’s “Girls Like You,” the band was joined on the field by a marching band and gospel choir.
Travis Scott jumped in after two songs from Maroon 5, launching into his chart-topping hit “Sicko Mode” and seemingly making the CBS censors earn their paychecks. The audio cut out three times during his performance, presumably due to some not-s0-family-friendly lyrics.
Georgia native Big Boi, one half of the duo Outkast, received a hometown welcome, rolling up to the stage in a lowrider before jumping into Outkast’s “The Way You Move.”
In the lead-up to the Super Bowl halftime show, some critics suggested that, in support of former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick, artists should refuse any offers from the NFL to perform at the championship game. Kaepernick famously knelt during the national anthem while he was on the 49ers to protest racism and police brutality and last played in the NFL in 2016. He has has filed a lawsuit accusing the NFL of collusion, claiming that his unemployment is due to his activism.
The controversy reared its head again on Tuesday when a previously scheduled press conference for Maroon 5 and the halftime show was canceled, with the NFL issuing a statement saying that “the artists will let their show do the talking.”
According to Variety, Maroon 5 reached out to more than half a dozen artists to join them for the halftime show, including Cardi B, Andre 3000, Lauryn Hill, Nicki Minaj, and Usher, to no avail. Rihanna also reportedly turned down the opportunity to perform.
Watch the full performance below.