The first Super Bowl to be held in the New York City/New Jersey area will bring an equally historic volume of concerts, as the music industry looks to top recent efforts in cities like New Orleans, Indianapolis and Dallas.
Leading the charge is VH1, which will kick off a series of six concerts in New York City's five boroughs (plus New Jersey) on Monday, January 27, with the appropriately titled VH1 Super Bowl Blitz. Participating artists will be J. Cole at Queens College (Jan. 27), Janelle Monae at Lehman College in The Bronx (Jan. 28), Fall Out Boy at Brooklyn Bowl (Jan. 29), TLC at Manhattan's Beacon Theatre (Jan. 30), Goo Goo Dolls at Staten Island's St. George Theatre (Jan. 31) and Gavin DeGraw at Montclair, New Jersey's Wellmont Theatre (Feb. 1).
"Normally we would do one big show in the market where Super Bowl is being played, as we have with All American Rejects to Maroon to B.o.B. to Rihanna – twice," says VH1 president Tom Calderone. "But we wanted to celebrate the fact that it's not only in New York and New Jersey for the first time, and it's an opportunity to do an outdoors, against-the-elements kind of show."
The concerts will air live each night on VH1 at 11 p.m. ET/PT and stream live via the VH1 mobile app and at SuperBowl.VH1.com. Official sponsors are Papa John's, Verizon and Mars/Wrigley. To amplify the outdoor angle, exclusive pre-shows will stream online featuring marching bands, dance performances and other surprises. "We'll be outside whether it's 32 degrees or minus 5," Calderone says.
Tickets will be available starting Monday, Jan. 13, when @VH1 will tweet secret times and places in New York City where fans can show up to have their picture taken with Iggy The Penguin, the official mascot of the Super Bowl Blitz concert series and tag their photo with the hashtag #Vh1Blitz for a chance to win tickets. Additionally, a limited number of tickets for each show will be available for purchase.
While many bookings during Super Bowl Week will be paid, VH1's are promotional – like a talk show or an awards show – and will therefore be paid. "They're doing it for the exposure on VH1, being tethered to the Super Bowl energy. Not only will you hear the hits, but we chose artists who have new music to promote, so it works out best for everybody," Calderone says.
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