RIAA Music Notes Blog

More Than A Feeling

February 11, 2011

For a sporting event hailed for its sweeping appeal, last weekend’s Super Bowl XLV on FOX did not disappoint, attracting a record 111 million viewers to become the most-watched television program of all time

What can we suspect attracted non-footballers?  Plenty!  Be it the traditionally creative commercials, never uneventful half-time show, or smattering of celebrity citings, the Super Bowl has something for everyone. But what we take a particular interest in is how terrifically musical the event was this year.

Beginning the night with patriotic performances from Glee’s Lea Michele and RCA Record’s Christina Aguilera, and including original commercials with music star power by the way of Eminem, Faith Hill, Justin Bieber, Ozzy Osbourne and others, musical appetites were appropriately whet for the Black Eyed Peas’ eight song halftime set.  B.E.P.’s performance – which garnered more viewers than the last three year’s respective halftime shows – wooed fans with upbeat dance beats and surprise appearances from musicians Slash and Usher. 

The halftime show also boosted Peas’ music sales up 25 percent week-over-week, while songs played at the Super Bowl or in its commercials bumped the album sales of Eminem, Kenny G, Guns 'n' Roses, Elton John, Boz Scaggs and Usher up an approximate 20 percent, according to SoundScan figures reported in Variety.  Additionally, the special football-themed Glee that followed the game achieved the song-and-dance series’ highest ratings yet.

What does this all mean?  For one, it suggests that music’s appeal is as high as ever and an essential element to help drawing interest to other products and positioning them more favorably with consumers.  It’s also a reminder that fans today can find their next favorite song from a variety of diversified platforms. Labels today are forging media and tech partnerships to offer fans greater access to their favorite music than ever before, and every uptick matters.  Hear a song on a commercial, TV show or in a restaurant, use an app like SoundHound or Shazam to identify it, stream it via iLike, Pandora, Rhapsody, MOG or other streaming services or click the “buy” button on iTunes, Amazon or other download stores and in little to no time, the music’s all yours to enjoy.  It’s that easy access, anywhere-you-go-model that is putting modern music label offerings at the top of fans’ wish lists today.  And my friends, there’s so much more to come!

And while last weekend’s big event was a nice taste of live music, this weekend’s 53rd annual Grammy telecast will be a smorgasbord of entertainment.  Don’t miss music’s biggest night, airing at 8 PM ET/PT on CBS this Sunday, with live performances by Bob Dylan, Mumford & Sons, the Avett Brothers, Lady Gaga, Katy Perry, Cee Lo Green, Miranda Lambert, Arcade Fire, Dr. Dre joining Eminem and many more.  See you there!

Liz Kennedy, Deputy Director, Communications, RIAA

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