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Maroon 5 headline Super Bowl halftime show amid racism row

Adam Levine (L) of Maroon 5 and Travis Scott (R) perform during the halftime show of Super Bowl LIII between the New England Patriots and the Los Angeles Rams during the first half of Super Bowl LIII at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta, Georgia, USA, Feb. 03, 2019. EPA-EFE/LARRY W. SMITH

Adam Levine (L) of Maroon 5 and Travis Scott (R) perform during the halftime show of Super Bowl LIII between the New England Patriots and the Los Angeles Rams during the first half of Super Bowl LIII at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta, Georgia, USA, Feb. 03, 2019. EPA-EFE/LARRY W. SMITH

EFE

Maroon 5 on Sunday headlined this year’s Super Bowl halftime show in a lackluster performance that even pyrotechnic effects could not salvage.

The band - who was petitioned to not perform at the show amid allegations of racism against the National Football League (NFL)'s Super Bowl - could ignite the crowds momentarily with tracks such as “Girls Like You”, and when lead singer, Adam Levine , decided to take off his shirt mid-performance.

Levine, who had begun his performance in a black jacket, ended the show showing off his inked body.

The band performed on tracks from the “Songs About Jane” album, with which they had debuted in 2002, including “Harder to Breathe”, “This Love” and “She Will Be Loved”.

Some 100 million people had tuned in from their homes to watch the band perform.

NFL also showed a few seconds long video clip of the animated character, Spongebob Squarepants to pay tribute to its creator, Stephen Hillenburg, who died at the age of 57 in November last year.

The halftime show also included performances by rapper Travis Scott and Big Boi .

Scott performed a part of “Sicko Mode”, which has been censored on television, while Big Boi presented “I Like The Way You Move”.

Earlier, Rihanna and Pink had refused to perform at the Superbowl due to a controversy surrounding racial inequality.

The controversy began when, Colin Kaepernick , who played for the San Francisco 49ers , on Aug. 27, 2016, decided to kneel down during the national anthem of the United States in protest of alleged police brutality against the African-American community, which has resulted in numerous controversial deaths in the last few years.

Two-and-a half years after his protest, that led to a dozen players replicating his action, Kaepernick has been left out in the cold.

He has not been signed by any professional team since Mar. 2017 due to an alleged boycott by NFL.

Following the incident, the NFL had also made it compulsory for players to remain standing during the anthem.

In the last few weeks, the controversy had spiraled and Kaepernick’s supporters were able to collect 114,000 signatures on a petition that urged Maroon 5 not to perform at the Super Bowl.

The petition said that the NFL punished Kaepernick for his stand against racial inequality, adding that no artist should work with NFL until the institution changes its policy.

The CBS network, which broadcast the game this year, bagged around $5.1 million to $5.3 million for 30 seconds of advertisement in a game where the New England Patriots defeated the Los Angeles Rams 13-3.


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