Although it’s been decades since veteran rockers The Who have displayed the crazed intensity that marked their early career, guitarist Pete Townshend is encouraging the half-time crowd at this year’s Super Bowl to “go wild.”
In an interview with Billboard, Townshend described the set list for Sunday’s show as “a mashup of stuff” with bits of “Baba O’Riley,” “Pinball Wizard,” “Who Are You” and “Won’t Get Fooled Again.”
He said, “It’s quite a saga. A lot of the stuff that we do has that kind of celebratory vibe about it — we’ve always tried to make music that allows the audience to go a bit wild if they want to. Hopefully it will hit the spot.”
Townshend and vocalist Roger Daltrey, the band’s original members, will be joined by Simon Townshend on rhythm guitar, Pino Palladino on bass, Zak Starkey on drums and John “Rabbit” Bundrick on keyboards for the concert.
In recent years, the half-time show (following 2004’s ”wardrobe malfunction” with Janet Jackson and Justin Timberlake) has featured established acts such as U2, Bruce Springsteen, Tom Petty, Prince, the Rolling Stones and Paul McCartney, some of whom have resorted to playing medleys as a way to capitalize on their huge hits and long histories.
According to the NFL, the Bridgestone Super Bowl halftime show was seen last year by more than 151 million viewers. This year’s show will be broadcast in more than 230 countries.