Reportedly, the NFL has asked top performers Rihanna, Coldplay and Katy Perry to actually pay the league for the right to play at next year?s Super Bowl halftime show. Multiple sources report a strong negative reaction from all the acts involved.

Some reports say that the NFL has broached the subject with artist representatives, but the league hasn?t specifically said how much it would want or how it would be paid. Digital Music News? story says that rather than just getting the artists to write a check, the league might ask for something more creative, such as participation in a tour that takes place after the Super Bowl.
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An NFL representative said, ?Our only goal with the Pepsi Super Bowl Halftime Show is to put on the best show for the millions of fans who watch,? she said. ?Our contract arrangements with artists are confidential.?

The NFL has traditionally not paid acts to play the coveted half time slot, but has always offered to cover the hefty travel and production expenses.

It?s a great promotional opportunity for the acts that play. Last year?s halftime show, featuring Bruno Mars and the Red Hot Chili Peppers, garnered a record 115.3 million viewers. Mars performance led immediately to a big spike in album sales and a record year for Mars financially, including Mars? first-ever appearance on the Forbes Celebrity 100 list.

The Super Bowl halftime show has evolved over the years. In the early years, Carol Channing and the Grambling State University marching band were among the featured acts, each appearing twice in the first 6 years of the game. Popular acts started to become the norm in the early ?90s, with Michael Jackson?s performance in 1993 cited as a seminal moment. Jackson was booked to increase start power after the previous year?s halftime show showed a drop in viewership.

– Pat Welsh